Just a few short months ago, Joel Embiid made sports headlines everywhere as he underwent foot surgery for a broken bone, causing him to fall from the number one NBA draft pick to number three with the Philadelphia 76ers.
This week, he made headlines again, this time for appearing on a basketball court despite still sporting a neon-green cast on his foot.
No, he wasn’t at an NBA training camp or engaging in rehab exercises. So where was he? The big-hearted big man was helping fellow top draft-picks like Marcus Smart and Jerami Grant run basketball drills at Seeds of Peace, a summer camp that bring children from conflict regions like Afghanistan and Pakistan together so they can see each other in a different light.
Of course, Embiid was cautious and reportedly only participated in the least strenuous drills, but there was a moment where he apparently, “ditched the crutches to break out some dance moves.”
Assuming his activity was cleared by his physician, I applaud Joel Embiid using his celebrity to help kids who are in tough spots. As a Houston podiatrist, I also want to point out to anyone facing foot surgery the hope that’s evident in this story—even if you have to change your activities after surgery, you won’t have to drop your entire life. With the guidance and supervision of a skilled physician like Dr. Andrew Schneider, you can still participate in the activities that mean the most to you without jeopardizing your recovery.