The Wigan Warriors star took time out from his preparations to praise the sports injury team at The Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital in Oswestry, Shropshire, where he has received treatment on numerous occasions.
O’Loughlin has come under the care of Sports Injury Consultant Mr Simon Roberts and his team – and says any sports person suffering with an injury – no matter what their level – could benefit from a trip to Oswestry.
“Rugby League has given me a fantastic life and I’ve been proud and honoured to captain both my club and country,” said Sean.
“But, like any professional sportsman, I know that the risk of injury is always there. I have had a few injuries during my career and I’m so grateful to Simon and the team at Oswestry for the fantastic work they do.
“From the first time I went there, I knew I was in good hands. These guys are the best in their business.”
O’Loughlin’s team-mate Sam Tomkins is another who has crossed paths with the sports injury team at RJAH over the years.
While Sam was disappointed to miss out on selection for the England squad this time around, he knows his very career was on the line at times in recent years – and credits the Oswestry team with getting him back playing again.
“I’ve had a couple of bad injuries over the last few years,” said Sam. “I had knee ligament surgery in 2015 and was back under the knife last year owing to a foot injury.
“I was lucky to be in the hands of a great sports injury team who never doubted for a minute that I would be back as strong as ever. I feel in great shape now and I owe a lot of that to them.
“The team at Oswestry really look after you and I’d advise anyone with a sports injury that has the chance to go and meet the team to do so.”
Mr Roberts has treated internal sports stars from a wide range of sports as well as Rugby League – including internationals from the spheres of football and Rugby Union, as well as celebrated Olympians.
But the service he and his team of sports injury experts offers is available to all on the NHS – and he encourages anyone struggling to seek an early referral from their GP.
He leads a team that includes fellow consultants Mr Pete Gallacher and Mr Andrew Barnett. They are supported by Clinical Nurse Practitioner Gaynor Kanes, while patients can also benefit from the expert input of sports physiotherapists Dr Andrea Bailey and Jane Leah.
“Sean and Sam are two outstanding Wigan Warriors,” said Mr Roberts. “It’s been great to work with two such dedicated sportsmen and help them get back to doing what they do best.
“But we also offer the same standard of care and expertise to what I like to call the weekend warrior – sports enthusiasts who play for pleasure.
“We’ve got a wealth of knowledge and I’m not sure the people of Shropshire know quite what an outstanding service they have for sports injuries right on their doorstep.
“We can’t help if you don’t come and see us – so I’d say to anyone with a sports injury to speak to their GP and ask to be referred.”