“Take your time. Every day is not going to be perfect. You’re not just going to move in some straight perfect line. You’re going to have days where things just don’t go your way.”

Frank kaminsky

What You will learn

  • How to support an athlete when faced with an injury.
  • How a professional athlete approached rehab and overcame the struggles of surgery.
  • How the business side of sport can influence the outcomes of rehab.

Have you ever been curious what happens behind the scenes when a professional athlete sustains an injury and must endure rehab? In this episode NBA player Frank Kaminsky shares his story of enduring rehab while also shedding light onto how the business of basketball has affected him over his career.

Frank is professional basketball player in the NBA who has played for the Charlotte Hornets, Phoenix Suns, Atlanta Hawks, and Houston Rockets. He also has served as a player representative for the NBA Player Association. Prior to his time in the NBA, Frank played for the Wisconsin Badgers where in 2015 he was named National Association of Basketball Coaches Player of the Year. 

Frank is fun to be around, a great pro, and a great teammate. Over his career he has endured a few minor injuries and a significant injury that led to surgery. In this episode Frank offers incredible insight into his journey through that surgery and how he found his way back on the court while also overcoming obstacles. 

Listen here – Finding Small Wins Podcast:

005 | Frank Kaminsky: Behind the scenes of rehab with a professional athlete

Notable Quotes

“Athletes getting injured is always going to happen, but how fast they can get back healthy is what will pay dividends to the organization, the fans, and even the player.”

Frank kaminsky

“There’s always going to be little weird setbacks with surgery. It’s never going to go exactly how the plan is designed to go. Things aren’t going to go perfect. There were days where I would come in and have two, three great days in a row and then just that one bad day where it felt like it was magnified tenfold. It can be an extremely frustrating process.”

frank kaminsky

Key Takeaways:

[1:16] Where does Frank play basketball before entering the NBA?

[3:21] How does Frank feel about the NIL?

[5:08] How do Frank’s ranking and draft order influence his rookie deal?

[6:03] What was Frank’s fit into the massive TV deal?

[6:57] Apart from the financial aspect, what else changed in the league from 2015 to 2023?

[9:30] Frank shares his perspective on the injury process. 

[10:44] Frank talks about the side of injuries that really can mess with someone’s head.

[11:09] What are the first steps as a player that Frank takes when an initial injury takes place?

[13:50] Adam and Frank talk about the role of the timing of an injury.

[16:26] Frank shares how to balance what is best for the player and what’s best for the Team.

[19:54] How did Frank prepare mentally for his unusual surgery?

[23:43] What was Frank’s attitude toward the physical aspect of rehab?

[25:49] How can PTs do a better job of setting realistic expectations?

[30:21] Frank shares what he thought was the most frustrating aspect of rehab.

[31:43] Has Frank picked any habit during the rehab process?

[33:40] Frank and Adam discuss the value of giving to rest in different cultures.

[38:42] Frank states: “It is not easy showing up for practice every single day.”

[40:27] Frank advises those going through rehab,

[44:00] Bodies take time to heal naturally.

[44:42] Are there any ways in which rehab could be made more enjoyable for professional athletes?

[51:38] Rehab is not like riding a bike, Frank explains why.

[57:59] How may contracts interfere with the rehab process?

[57:35] When Frank has to travel, how does he deal with the mental and physical toll? 

[58:43] Frank shares how challenging it is to play in Denver.

[1:01:56] Frank talks about the day he hit his “rookie wall”.

[1:03:53] Frank shares the crucial importance of being mentally present in the game.

[1:05:46] How does Frank define a small win?

[1:08:50] Frank advises anyone who wants to upgrade their health and performance.

[1:11:27] Frank shares his favorite NBA place to play.

[1:11:47] What is Frank’s favorite arena to play in?

[1:13:30] Frank answers questions about his favorite movies.

[1:15:15] Rapid-fire questions with Frank.

Mentioned in this episode

Adam Loiacono on InstagramLinkedInTwitter, and YouTube.

Book mention: Surgery, The Ultimate Placebo: A Surgeon Cuts through the Evidence, Ian Harris

Adam Loiacono


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