It’s been a long, hard summer for Jack Hobbs so far but the popular City defender is starting to see a bit of light at the end of the tunnel.
Hobbs, who was one of the Tigers’ top performers in 2011/12, is currently recovering from a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament sustained in a game against Coventry in late March.
Although it’s far too early to be setting comeback dates, the centre back has been getting through plenty of hard work with the club’s medical staff out in Portugal this week and, step by step, he is feeling the benefits.
“The best way to approach something like this is step by step,” said Hobbs.
“You can’t look too far ahead and set tough targets because you don’t quite know how your knee is going to react. You can really beat yourself up and get too downbeat if you do it that way.
“I’m just taking each day as it comes, listening to the advice I’m getting from the physios and doing what they say.
“Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve started to do some cycling and I’ve done some swimming out here in Portugal, so that is a little bit more mentally motivating and challenging. Right back at the start, all I could do was try to move my leg up and down whilst sitting on the physio bench.
“A lot of what I’ve been doing is very repetitive, but I know I have to do it because it will help further down the line.”
For a man who prides himself on maintaining a peak level of physical fitness, it has understandably been a tough few months but Hobbs, nicknamed ‘The Machine’ by his team-mates for his dedication to his work, knows it could have been worse.
“I’ve spoken to a lot of people in the game and they’ve all said that 15 years ago, this injury would have been a career-ender.
“The advances in sports science since then mean that players now come back from these injuries to carry on playing. The surgery I had went well and what they’ve done for me is brilliant and I have to thank them for that.
“I’m getting looked after really well by the medical staff here now as well as the sports science guys. Because I’m not doing as much physically as I would normally, you have to eat the right foods at the right time.
“But as well as the physical things, the physios also have to try and keep you right mentally because it’s easy to get down about things in this situation. Family and friends come into that as well.
“There are other things as well. We all saw how Cameron Stewart and Richard Garcia came back from similar injuries last season, so that is encouraging.”
As well as things are going, Hobbs will miss the opening months of the new season but he is looking forward to the new campaign under new manager Steve Bruce and his coaching staff.
“Obviously I’ve not been involved in the main training sessions, but speaking to the rest of the lads they’ve enjoyed the sessions with the new staff, although it looks as though it’s been hard work!
“I’m really looking forward to the season ahead, even though I won’t be fit for the first few months of it. It’s going to be another exciting challenge for us and I’m confident we’ll do well.”