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“My greatest foe is migraines” – Serena Williams



Serena Williams Describes the ‘Debilitating, Throbbing Pain’ of Migraines and How They’ve Changed Her Tennis Career. Serena Williams has been at the top of women’s tennis for over 20 years. She’s had to put up with a lot. From being a black woman in a predominantly white sport to her pregnancy sidelining her career for a while, Williams has faced many challenges.



However, one hurdle has nothing to do with injuries, pregnancies, or discrimination. For most of her career, Williams has dealt with horrible migraines. Williams has suffered from migraines for years. While many see them as horrible headaches, those who get them know it goes far deeper. She has experienced back, shoulder, and knee problems, details Bleacher Report, but migraines are different.





They can affect someone’s ability to see, think, hear, and take in their surroundings. Furthermore, in a world as unforgiving as sports, nobody wants to hear a valid excuse like migraines.

“Migraine isn’t a knee injury — it’s something you can’t physically see,” Williams told People. “You can’t really say, ‘Oh, Dad, I have a migraine. I’m going to stop playing.’ People are like, ‘I don’t see swelling. I don’t see bruising. Tough it out.’ I got used to playing through the pain… You can’t go into a press conference with the media asking, ‘Well, what happened?’ and say, ‘Well I had a migraine attack.”





Some of Williams’s highest highs and lowest lows occurred during migraines. They can be debilitating, but Williams learned to cope with them and ensure that she’s ready for the challenge no matter what the migraine is doing. During stressful times such as these, Williams still has to learn how to cope with her migraines even during the recent quarantine.

Williams isn’t just a tennis star. She’s a mother and a wife. Stuck at home with her family, Williams is experiencing much of the same stress that others worldwide are suffering. Unfortunately, stress can be linked to heavy migraines, according to Self.

“I was dealing with a lot of stress and unknown factors and things that I wasn’t used to,” she explained. “And so I think that was contributing to my migraine attacks and making them more frequent.”

Williams is now a spokesperson for the migraine pill Ubrelvy, but even more than that, she’s proof that although this condition can be debilitating, she does not let it get the best of her. Williams is another kind of athlete, but deep down, she has to go through what millions of others do. Her ability to do so, however, might be the key to her overall greatness.


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