Norweigan native and LSU diver Anne Tuxen was forced to redshirt her freshman season.
After years of believing she had shin-splints, she found out that she had exertional compartment syndrome in both her legs. This is a condition affecting the compartments within the lower legs with excess pressure build-up, causing extreme pain.
In Tuxen’s case, all four compartments in her shins were affected.
“It was extremely hard to find out that I wouldn’t be able to dive with the rest of my freshman class,” Tuxen said. “I was really looking forward to representing the Tigers.”
Tuxen underwent surgery on both of her shins. This involved cutting the fascia away from the compartments in her legs, resulting in several months without the use of her legs.
Taking legs away from anyone is difficult, but taking legs away from an athlete, whose primary job is to jump, is on a whole other level of frustration.
“I was very sad for a long time,” Tuxen said. “I moved from my home in Norway to dive in America, and when I was told I wouldn’t even be able to walk, it was truly devastating.”
Tuxen is a hard-working and high-level athlete, so it was no surprise that she worked hard to recover quickly.
“She recovered extremely well, and, based off of comparison of previous research, she was about a month ahead of schedule for return to activity,” said Joshua Bunch, a graduate assistant trainer with swimming and diving last year. “What made a huge difference in the recovery is her compliance to the program.”
Tuxen represented her home country, Norway, this summer at the 2019 FINA World Championships and the European Championships. She competed in the women’s ten-meter individual events as well as the women’s three-meter and ten-meter synchronized events with her younger sister Helle. This was Tuxen’s first World Championships, and performing at one of the highest levels in the international diving circuit was an incredible achievement for Tuxen.
“Anne’s hard work and dedication in rehabilitation post-op have given her a full recovery,” said head diving coach Douglas Shaffer. “I’m excited that this difficult time is behind.”
Tuxen is prepared to participate in the women’s platform events and three-meter events this year.
Tuxens goals are to remain unhurt, and she will maintain rehab in her shins to ensure her health. She also aims to final at this year’s Southeastern Conference championships and score at this year’s NCAA championships.
“I’m excited to finally be part of the team,” Tuxen said. “I’m excited to do what I love the most, which is to dive.”