Lindsey Vonn wraps injured shin with Austrian cheese

Posted By: The Ski Channel on February 18, 2010 3:13 pm

Yes, you read that right. Lindsey Vonn, American superstar skier and Olympic gold medalist, has been competing on an injured shin. That injury may have gotten the best of her today as she crashed during the slalom section of the Olympic super combined race.

However, she has been working vigorously to heal. Massage, laser therapy, cheese, painkillers…wait, back up. Cheese?

Lindsey has wrapped her shin with an Austrian topfen cheese with the hopes it will heal her faster. The cheese has a grainy texture and is low in fat. Sports medicine experts and cheesemongers alike are confused. John Lucey is a food chemist and professor at the University of Wisconsin. “Using it on an injury is an unusual purpose for cheese even in those countries,” he said, referring to Germany, Russia and Poland, where the cheese is popular. “It’s not clear if there’s anything in this that would help”.

Dr. William Levine, director of sports medicine at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center reminds us that athletes will do whatever it takes if they believe it will help them get better faster. “If an athlete thinks that something that is not illegal will help them heal better, they will do it,” he says. “There is no science behind using the cheese that I am aware of. But the kind of deep tibial bruise that Lindsey Vonn has is a tough injury. We would treat it with rest, a highly potent anti-inflammatory and ice.”

While the scientific evidence may be lacking, the empirical evidence is there. Despite the shin, Lindsey won a gold medal. Anyone know if Trader Joe’s carries Austrian topfen cheese? My ankle’s been bothering me…