Sir Steve Redgrave spent time at a Help for Heroes and GB Rowing event today, at the Charity’s Tedworth House Recovery Centre, Tidworth, Wiltshire.
Regarded as Britain’s greatest ever Olympian, having won Gold medals at five consecutive Olympic Games, Sir Steve was there to better understand what Help for Heroes deliver through their Sports Recovery programme, which helps military athletes at a high performance and grass roots level, in addition to the wider support the charity offers on an individual’s road to recovery.
Speaking at Tedworth House, Sir Steve said: “Those in the armed forces are naturally competitive and sharp. When they get injured that is taken away from them and there is a big hole to fill. For those that are wounded to still be able to do sport is amazing and to see their vigor and determination is very impressive.”
Sport plays a huge part in someone’s recovery both physically and psychologically. Sport and physical activity can contribute immeasurably to an individual’s physiological wellbeing and the camp provided a great opportunity for that.
Sir Steve met James Rose, 27, of Middleborough, a former member of 2nd Battalion The Yorkshire Regiment. He lost both his legs after an improvised explosive device went off underfoot while on patrol in Helmand province, Afghanistan, in November 2009 and now uses rowing as a way to keep fit.
“The rowing camp has been fantastic all week and was topped off with the visit by Sir Steve. He is hugely inspirational and congratulated me on my current Personal Best’s and advised me on some training tips. Advice from him means so much.”
During his visit, Sir Steve also met veteran Scott Meenagh who has recently been selected as part of the GB Rowing Development Squad and one day hopes to represent Great Britain at a Paralympic Games. On meeting Sir Steve, Scott said: “It is amazing to see such a legend of rowing taking a keen interest in what happens at Help for Heroes, from a grassroots and elite level. Para-rowing is still so new so for Sir Steve to be supporting us is phenomenal.
“Every individual rower who met him are on their very own special journey and I am sure Sir Steve will one day be glad that he was a part of that for them.”
Help for Heroes and British Rowing have committed to host a number of camps for wounded, injured and sick military personnel and veterans.
The camp, which is the second held in the series, was open to people of all abilities to provide a grass roots opportunity to get involved in rowing. Educational workshops were also delivered around how best to perform in sport and get the most out of training.
There were also opportunities for those identified as potentially talented for Help for Heroes to support them on that journey.
The camp formed part of Help for Heroes partnership with the British Paralympic Association to introduce military personnel to Paralympic sport.
Help for Heroes has been involved with Sports Recovery since 2008, and in the past year alone have offered 300 events across 50 different sports enabling over 2,100 wounded, injured and sick service personnel and veterans to take part in adaptive sports from grassroots through to performance level.
For more information about how Help for Heroes can support if you’re wounded, injured or sick, visit www.helpforheroes.org.uk/get-support