SPENDING three months on the sidelines has given Gab Pound a new perspective on her football life. 

Managing a stress reaction in her shin during the off-season, Pound was unfortunately unable to return to full training when the pre-season kicked off. 

Pound has found the process difficult, especially watching the rest of the side getting stuck into full training again. 

“It’s hard, when you have the whole group out on the track, you just want to be there,” Pound said on the Behind The Game Changers podcast.

“It can get pretty lonely, but it is what it is and it’s part of the journey.” 

Not one to get bogged down in the negatives, Pound started looking for the silver linings in her recovery journey. 

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Having two other players on the long-term injury list with Pound inspired her to create a rehab group where the girls could support each other through their own tough times. 

“Mim [Hill], myself and Brooke Walker kind of started [a rehab group] with a WhatsApp group,” she said. 

“Basically it’s just a support circle, so we send memes and inspirational quotes, lame stuff but it’s just funny and we have a cute little group.

“It’s nice to get that support from each other because it’s easy to think we’re all feeling lonely but you have to do something about it, and you know others are feeling the same way.” 

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Pound noted that her injury has given her a new appreciation of playing football, now desperate to get back out onto the track and into full training with the rest of the squad. 

“It makes you appreciate being out on the field so much more,” she said. 

“It motivates you more and you really appreciate your time out there and hopefully it’s the last time but it might not be, that’s just the reality of it.” 

In the meantime, Pound has been working hard with Wayne Schultz, the AFLW skill acquisition coach, on refining her craft and adding some more strings to her bow. 

“I’ve been doing a lot of work with ‘Schultzy’, working on the pipes, a lot of upper body stuff while the legs were out for a bit,” she said.

“I’ve been able to work on my skills a lot more and really work on my left foot.” 

Pound is now integrating back into training drills and hopes to be ready by Round 1 of the AFLW season. 

Listen to the full podcast below or wherever you get your podcasts.