It Hurts – Woody’s Book

by James Wood

A powerful no stone unturned account of how a workplace incident changed James’ life. ‘It Hurts – 12 Reasons NOT to get hurt at work’ is written in a way that most people will relate to and without any spin or jargon.

It Hurts! Expo

Disability Inclusion and Workplace Health and Safety: It Hurts! Expo has been produced in partnership between the Vocational and Applied Learning Association (VALA) and CNB Safe.

VALA and CNB Safe have worked together to develop two resources for an integrated VCE VM project for both Year 11 and Year 12 studies.

VALA and CNB Safe believe that the It Hurts! Expo is a valuable tool for teachers wanting to use a project-based approach in their teaching. It provides a structured approach with resources sourced from those with lived experience of disabilities and workplace injuries at CNB Safe which supports both teachers and students.

We hope you find this resource useful and we look forward to hearing about the Expo’s it inspires.

Woody’s two videos at the top of this page provide an understanding into the resources available for Year 11 and Year 12 students through this program and insights into Disability Inclusion and Workplace Health & Safety for the students to take with them for their rest of their lives.

To access the It Hurts! Expo Program to use at your school contact VALA via the website or at   The It Hurts! Expo is only available to VALA members.

I wrote this short book to answer some of the questions I get asked when I share my story at workplaces.

Some answers may come across as a little crude and I do swear, so I apologise in advance if you are offended. Getting hurt at work sucks and I’m not going to sugar coat it!

When I was in my early twenties, I stuffed up!

I made some wrong CHOICES and I’ve been in a wheelchair ever since. Woody

Note: Woody has released 2 versions of his short book. One without swearing to keep the some people happy and the other is written in the way that he and many others talk. You can choose which version will suit your students best.




Book Reviews


A very insightful read on WHY safety is so important. 12 reasons NOT to get Hurt at Work tells a story of workplace injury and the impact on one’s physical and mental health. James brilliantly reflects on his accident and his life with clarity and candor. 

Read it: it will change the way you see workplace safety. 

Mary Appleby
Human Resources Executive - MHRM CAHRI

“Woody’s book is brutal. It reflects the seriousness of the incident that changed James’ life and those around him but is not always a “serious book”. Any book like this needs levity.

The book serves its purpose as an honest response to many of the questions that James is asked every time he speaks to workers and managers. The choice of language reflects James’ voice but also the voices of his readers and his audiences.

This book is nothing like a glossy self-help about coping with trauma. It reflects the reality faced by James and hundreds of other people who are seriously injured at work. The clear, but never simple, lesson is ‘Don’t hurt yourself’.

Kevin Jones