In the latest in our ”Off the court talks” we welcomed Dimitar Manevski who has been doing his job as a physiotherapist for more than 15 years. He instantly fell in love with physiotherapy and now he is an expert in Kinesiotherapy. From football clubs in North Macedonia and golden years at HC Vardar 1961 with whom he won two EHF Champions League trophies, he is currently working for Hungarian handball giant – Telekom Veszprem. Enjoy another ”Off the court talks” read and stay tuned because more stories are waiting to be heard!
Was physiotherapy your first choice?
Yes, this profession was my first choice. While I was in college, I had a course in Kinesiotherapy and during that time I figured out that this will be my future profession. Basically, it was love at first sight and it simply won me over.
How long have you been working as a physiotherapist?
I have been working as a physiotherapist for more than 15 years. At first, I worked with several football clubs in North Macedonia and then I started working in HC Vardar 1961. I worked there until 2020. After that I made a ”transfer” to the Hungary and Telekom Veszprem.
Before coming to Hungary, you worked in North Macedonia, in HC Vardar 1961. During that time you won the EHF Champions League twice, can you describe how it felt to win that prestigious competition?
It is a dream and a goal for each of us working in sport. The feeling of winning that trophy two times was priceless. I literally thought I was dreaming, especially when the fans welcomed us in the center of Skopje. At that moment you realized that all the effort and sacrifices in private life makes sense and that they were worth it. I want everyone who works in sports to experience something like this. Because everyone wants and dreams about winning the gold.
You have been working at the Telekom Veszprem since 2021. How did that collaboration start?
In 2021, I received an offer from the Telekom Veszprem’s management to be a part of their medical team. I have accepted the offer with pleasure because I have always appreciated and had a high opinion about the whole club and the people who work there.
You are physiotherapist, are you involved in the training process in the club?
The medical team is a part of the professional team in every club. Our task is to lead the rehabilitation process. During that process we are working together with the fitness coach. Our main task is to take care of quality rehabilitation and returning athletes to the field. We are all in constant and daily communication with the coaches. We always inform them about the rehabilitation process and when and how players will return to the normal training process.
Do you still use the Kinetic Flossing technique? Can you tell us something more about it?
A few years ago, I received an invitation from my colleague from Athens to attend Flossing training and Ergon technique training. At that time it was still an unknown technique in the rehabilitation process. Recently, this technique has been often used in rehabilitation processes. This method is a new therapeutic method which consists in the application of different elastic bandwidths that are combined with manual technique. Compression is done on the tape via the application. Basically, you are doing the pressure on the trigger points for a few seconds. At that time, various manual techniques can be additionally applied, which can be combined with active and passive movements of athletes.
Due to the busy season and the tight match schedule, injuries have become very common among professional athletes, what do you think is most important for injury prevention?
Professional sport is really hard, injuries are normal and they are integral part of the each sport, especially handball that is a contact sport. It is necessary to prepare plans and program for the players for injury prevention. Also, it is necessary to make an individual plan for the players who have acute or chronic injuries which emerged during the career. Our task is to prepare them for trainings and competitions, but also to successfully rehabilitate them after hard training or matches. In this way we reduce the likelihood of injury.
Do you work with amateurs or only with professional athletes? How common are injuries in amateurs? And what are the most common injuries?
While I was working in the North Macedonia, I worked with amateurs, mostly runners who run marathons, half-marathons and trail running. Also, I worked with people who play tennis recreationally. Of course, they are more likely to be injured, because they don’t have experts who are constantly telling them how to warm up properly, how to rehabilitate after hard training or what exercises to do for injury prevention. However, people who have a lot of other obligations during the day, for them sport is a stress relief and a hobby, but for us it is a science.
Worst injury or case you encountered during your career and how did the recovery go?
In my career, I have encountered different types of injuries. Each injury is in its own way specific and you have to take every injury seriously and dedicate yourself to rehabilitation process as much as possible.
Do you have any anecdote you want to tell from your career?
Right now, I can’t specifically remember, but of course there were many. Mostly they all stay in the locker room.
Have you ever played any sport, if so, which one?
As a child, I played many sports, but not one professionally.
What do you like to do in your free time when you are not with the Telekom Veszprem team?
Veszprem is a peaceful city. There are many beautiful places where I can spend my free time. My hobbies are hiking and cycling and that’s how I’m spending my free moments.
What is your advice that you would give to all future physiotherapists and those who want to become it?
To invest the maximum in what they do, to constantly upgrade their knowledge, to believe in themselves and in what they do because dreams come true, and effort and investment in yourself will pay off.