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Fitness for life: Life changing incident left him down, but now Mac’s bouncing back

FITNESS: It was Saturday, May 7, 2016, competition time. But it was this one day that changed Mac Rosen’s life forever.

accidents, health, marine,

Hayden Rhodes

Sunday 18 June 2017, 09:00AM

Mac was doing something he had performed 1,000s of times before, and it all came out wrong… He just didn’t know how wrong it was going to get.

Moving on to Wednesday, May 11, 2016, Mac awoke during surgery and felt something cutting through the bone in his leg. It turned out to be the most horrendous pain and emotional sense of overwhelm in his life.

Many people still do not know what actually happened, can you explain what was going on at the time of the accident and what was going through your head. I just went up in the air too high and landed on a straight leg… I just heard it snap. I reached down to feel my leg and realised it wasn’t good. I already did about 70% of the run and only had two tricks left… I guess I was just over excited and did a different trick to what I was planning … and it came out wrong. When I fell no one really realised it was serious but then people just rushed into the water to get me out… All the kids and boys I coach were the first ones to jump in to help me.

How high in air were you?

I don’t know… It was pretty high. High enough to get a massive trauma like that…I heard you were already winning, was this going to be the last trick of the contest? I felt like I was pretty much on top of the scoreboard, but the last two tricks didn’t turn out the way I wanted them to be.

In hospital what thoughts were going through your head?

I didn’t really understand what was going on because I was on so many different medications, but deep inside I knew I wanted to come back stronger. They were rough days, sometimes I felt like I didn’t want to do anything or go anywhere, but just lay down on the hospital bed… because that’s all I could really do, but I always worked to stay positive and knew I needed to do my best to come back stronger.

What coping mechanisms helped at this time?

What really helped me to cope was the support I got from everyone; family, friends and everybody else. I guess I just wanted to prove that I can come back, at least to try to come back and I knew I would do it not just for myself but also for everyone who supported me.

Hayden visited you in BKK – what did you talk about?

When I just lost my leg I was thinking of someone who could help me to come back stronger and then I thought of Hayden, because I trained with him before for the Asian Beach Games, and then Hayden just came to visit me. We talked about mental stuff; he explained that if I want to be strong physically I also needed to be strong in my mind. A few weeks after getting out from hospital, I went to RPM Health Club and Hayden and all the crew there helped me a lot. He’s like a brother to me.

You mentioned to Hayden that you had to get back on your board – is that a big motivator?

It is… and it’s not an easy one. I have to work a lot harder to exercise and I need to get used to moving slower! Getting my fitness, strength and mental confidence back to do what I love, helps me to keep going. If not this dream, I don’t know what I would do.

There are videos of you training in hospital. Is exercise and fitness important?

Super important. For me exercising is like pain relief, I forget about pain and enjoy working out and exercising every time. I still have pain every day but working out helps me to not think about it and make me stronger both mentally and physically, I want to keep going.

What does exercise and fitness do for your brain, moods and energy?

I enjoy feeling strong and looking strong, I don’t really want people to look down and think that I can’t do something just because I have one leg. Life just goes on, with a leg or without it… exercising makes me believe that anything is possible.

The mental and emotional sides of an accident like this can be pretty rough. How low did you go and how did you come out so strong?

I feel like it still might be going… even though I’m trying to come back to my normal life, it’s just not the same any more. I always think about doing what I really want to do when I ride, going up in the air and just running around. But I’m still alive; I guess that’s good… When I arrived to Bangkok in the ambulance mum thought I had died.

Do you still have ‘low’ days? What do you do to pull yourself out of a mental funk?

Well… I exercise. That’s the only way to make myself feel better. I go to RPM Health Club, play basketball, go swimming and even enjoy REBEL Rock Climbing. I try to do anything that is physical activity. I like moving around.

It’s been a very long process to simply walk again, you have had a few prosthetic limbs, how are you doing on the board now?

Riding wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be, but to be able to do things I was doing before will take time. I try not to think that it’s impossible, but sometimes it’s hard to avoid thoughts like that. I aim to ride every day though.

People forget you have to go to hospital frequently, how often do you visit and what goes on?

C and C Marine

What remains of my leg shrinks every few months and the socket has to be adjusted with time. Right now I’m using a better prosthetic leg then the first one I got for walking. However, I did a lot of research and there are really good ones that could help me to be as comfortable with my body as I was before, but the really good ones are the really pricey ones, they could go up to millions of Thai Baht.

A new all-round prosthetic leg, is the goal, right? Why is this so important for your life and how much is it?

I’ve already got a sport leg for riding, Its Moto Knee from Biodapt which I think is one of the best legs I could get for what I want to do (professional wakeboarding). However, having a good leg for day-to-day use would change my life. My hips wouldn’t hike up and affect my back, I could walk smoother, move smoother, you know… just be smoother all round! Hayden’s helping to collect sponsorship money to go towards that fund. It’s really pricey. Without ongoing medical costs it’s about US $100,000 just for the leg! That’s A LOT of Thai Baht. Of course visiting the hospital regularly is ongoing for me now too. Life has dramatically changed.

You have entered the PHUKET SPARTANS team… tell us about this

I don’t really know much about the team yet, but I’ve seen all the photos and I’m sure the team is strong. I think it will be fun, but hard too, not impossible though. If I can do this, you can too. (Look out for more information on the Phuket Spartans and the Spartan race in forthcoming issues of The Phuket News.)

We all have adversity in our lives, what is your current perspective of what happened and your future goals?

Everything just changed completely. Right now I have to start from the bottom to become good at something. In the future I want to try other things, like sky diving or anything that has to do with being active.

Currently I’m working out on street exercising, which seems to be really good for the body, difficult but fun.

Wake boarding, surfing, skating, riding a board in general is an incredible lifestyle, is wake boarding like medicine to you?

Just being on the water and staying active makes me forget about everything else. After I ride I feel more calm and relaxed, enjoying life.

Gary Carrick and your fiancé Maria, have been incredibly important to you over the last year, anyone else you wish to shout out to?

RPM Health Club, Anthem Wake-Park, REBEL Rock Climbing, Thai Wakepark and Phuriwat Phattranonarnan, Teddy Fagerstrom and the team, and everyone who supported me in any way. Without all of you I wouldn’t have made it so far. I really do appreciate all the help and support.

Anything else you would like to add?

Hi to all my friends, followers and sponsors, I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for their love, help and support. No words can describe how grateful I am to have them all around me. To everybody who’s been there for me – thank you.

For those who are willing to donate, here is the donation account information:

Siam Commercial Bank (SCB)

Mackinthai Thomas Rosen

Account #: 601 402070 5

Swift code : SICOTHBK

(Please leave your name in the description area on your transaction, so we know who to thank)

Hayden Rhodes (Club Manager of Phukets Finest Health Club - RPM Health Club) is the creator of Surf Training and is known for his enthusiasm and lifelong love of health, fitness, personal development and surfing. He has been helping people improve their surfing and snowboarding around the world for more then 20 years.

Hayden believes everyone has the ability to improve their lives and promotes health as much as he promotes fitness. He continues to study, surf and snowboard around the world and looks forward to helping you up grade your lifestyle. Visit

Read original story here.



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