The 27-year old back rower picked up a groin problem in pre-season last summer, an injury that eventually ruled him out for the campaign. It means he hasn't featured in an Ospreys shirt since the 45-10 win over Munster in the 2012 PRO12 play-off semi-final.
Now, with preparations for the coming season well underway, Smith is set to challenge for a starting place in the opening game of the new league season which is less than two months away.
"It's nice to be back out there with the boys" said Smith.
"It's been a long time out of the first team environment for me so it's good to be involved again and getting a rugby ball in my hands at last.
"It was a tough injury to get my head round as there was no time frame at the start of it. It started off with me thinking I'd be back in time for the start of the season but the return to play date kept on rolling on and before I knew it, the season had come and gone.
"It was tough to deal with, but I suppose it's just one of those things that comes with the job unfortunately."
Smith has been a permanent fixture at Llandarcy throughout the summer, working closely with the region's medical team to ensure he was ready to go when the squad returned for pre-season.
"I was glad to be able to come in and do some work as I could start to see the light at the end of the tunnel" he continued.
"My body is in pretty good condition generally, it's had time to get over the knocks and bumps you get every week so it wasn't as though I had to recover after a long season was it?
"It's been a very frustrating time for me and I couldn't have got through it without the support of physio Brian O'Leary who I've spent a lot to time working closely with. He's pulled me through and got me into some kind of shape.
"If it was frustrating for me, it was doubly frustrating for him but I'm extremely grateful to him and the other physios for all their help over the last year."
Smith, who is just nine games away from joining the exclusive band of Ospreys centurions, has enjoyed being back involved in rugby sessions and is now hoping to impress the coaches enough over the coming weeks to pick up where he left off almost 14 months ago.
He said: "I'm dying to get stuck back into it properly, desperate to be back playing and hopefully get into some kind of form in pre-season so that I can challenge for a place when the league starts in September.
"I'll be trying my hardest to get my way back into the side. I realise that some boys have a head start on me because of the way they played last season but I can't worry about that. If I want to get back into the jersey I've got to enjoy my rugby and really give it everything."