Brooke Cullen is an 11 year-old diver from the UK with Osgood-Schlatter Disease, a common condition our RockDocs see often among athletic children between the ages of 10 and 14 years old. Knee pain and swelling around the kneecap are the main indicators. Since the surrounding muscles (quadriceps, hamstrings, calves) become tight and mechanics are altered due to pain, Osgood-Schlatter’s becomes especially painful during certain activities, such as running, kneeling and jumping, and eases with rest. Kinesiology tape can be applied to help alleviate the pain and swelling associated with this condition.
We discovered Brooke after her mother, Gemma Cullen entered her in a contest to win a year-supply of RockTape. After learning about her condition and her dreams of diving and competing internationally, we fell in love with this little champ.
Here’s how we keep Brooke Cullen and other kids with Osgood-Schlatter’s moving easier and going stronger longer:
Tell us about Brooke’s diving career! What are your goals?
Brooke has been a sporty, athletic child since toddlerhood. She trains with her diving club 18 hours per week on the England Diving Programme
alongside England Diving coaches progressing towards the elite level.
Brooke was scouted from her primary school physical education lessons onto the Talent Identification Programme when she was eight. Initially, around 2,000 children were selected and tested locally. She was 1 of 85 children asked to progress to the next stage of testing!
Then she was selected again, with 16 other children, for the last part of the trial – stage 3 – to attend Diving lessons for 6 weeks to see of she had what it takes. After the final round of testing she was asked to join the TID Diving Squad
– where her journey toward competing begins… We’re now 3.5 years in and she is one of six children asked to continue at her level of training. She is thriving and enjoying every minute of her sport.
My plans are to keep training hard at diving. I really love my sport and would love to compete for my country one day. This takes a lot of dedication. I’ve already been chosen for the England Z Camps
which is run by Swim England
so it’s a great start for my future. Later in life, I would also love to coach kids to dive.
When/how did you discover Brooke’s Osgood Schlatter’s Disease? How has it affected her athletic performance?
Around 6 months ago Brooke began to feel pain in her knees while training so I took her to a physiotherapist
to be assessed. She was diagnosed with Osgood-Schlatter. Her physiotherapist showed me how
to tape her knees using RockTape H2O
for pain management and support. She is so active and in water so much, the doctor suggested we use the stickiest tape on the market. The pain would be on and off, good and bad days, but she has always been able to continue to train with the help of RockTape strapping her knees. At the moment we are having a good spell and very little pain after quite a good growth spurt but I always have RockTape at the ready for when more pain comes back.
Taping the knees seems to be very beneficial to children with Osgood-Schlatter’s. We have her knees strapped continuously not just for training, we find this works best and helps with recovery. Brooke and I recommend it for pain relief and support to anyone and everyone affected. Using RockTape on her knees has made a huge impact on Brooke’s symptoms and keeping her in the sport she loves at the level of training she does.
What is your favorite RockTape product?
My favorite rocktape product is the H2O tape
as it stays put during her wet training sessions as well as dry board, and also through daily strength and conditioning sessions.
My favourite is the H2O tape
too. It feels really strong and secure while I’m training in the pool and in the dry land sessions.
RockTape is an official sponsor of USA Diving.