Moray martial arts star Andy Adam finally back to his international best after broken leg hell
THOSE who told Andy Adam his double leg break was a career-ending injury may have jumped the gun – as another golden year in martial arts has proved.
The taekwon-do veteran fractured his tib and fib, the two main bones on his lower right leg in a training accident just over two years ago. Surgery involved having a plate and 12 screws inserted to put his leg back in place.
Advised to give up competing in the sport which brought him numerous world, European and top international titles over a memorable 30 years, Adam refused to listen.
“Career-ending, that was what I was told at the time and even the guys I train with were saying that,” he recalled.
“Technically I shouldn’t really be sparring. It’s just if I put the leg in the wrong place at the wrong time and clash shins, there’s so much metalwork in there, does it cave in or does the leg give up?”
But the Elgin School of Taekwon-do fighter and coach embarked on a gruelling stint of recovery and rehabilitation, with the hard work being rewarded by a truly amazing year.
He progressed to the coveted 6th Dan in his sport, medalled at the World and European Championships then capped it all with a triple golden honour at the UK Open Championships.
Battling his way to gold at the Euros in the sparring competition was a massive achievement. “The European win meant a lot. I thought that one was gone since I broke my leg. I thought I would get back to patterns but the sparring one, there were too many parameters that could go the wrong way.
Adam’s world title bid was decimated by a vomiting bug which laid him low for most of the tournament. He still managed to fight his way to a patterns bronze but couldn’t compete in the sparring.
“Then I hummed and hawed about doing the UK Open because I was so burned out from doing the worlds, but I went for it.”
He took gold in the patterns, beating fellow Elgin club member Scott Thomson in the final, claimed the sparring gold and then earned the honour of best overall individual.
“It’s taken me two years to get back to where were I was, pre-injury. Winning the Europeans meant I could kind of draw a line it. Going to the UK Open and winning the sparring, the patterns and getting the overall, it double underlines it now because that’s roughly where I was when I broke my leg.
“I had won the patterns at the worlds, I was European sparring and I was UK sparring champion at that time so that’s the end of that saga as far as I’m concerned.”