Once on the Battlefield, Now on the Playing Field
By Staff Sgt. Robin Olsen, JFHQ
/ Published February 18, 2010
Nashville -- The Olympic Committee's Paralympic Military Program is hosting an inaugural Warrior Games for wounded servicemembers, May 10-14, at the US Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs.
The games, which are a joint effort between the Pentagon and the U.S. Olympic Committee, are part of an effort to inspire recovery, capitalize on physical fitness and promote opportunities for growth and achievement among those wounded, ill or injured.
An estimated 200 athletes will compete as guest of the USOC Paralympic Military Program. From the Army there will be 100 servicemembers chosen, 50 from the Marine Corps, 25 from the Air Force and 25 from the Navy/Coast Guard.
All athletes and alternates selected will receive about a month of training assistance in preparation for the games. The events will be shooting, swimming, archery, sitting volleyball, cycling, track, wheelchair basketball, discus and shot put. Some of this support includes coaching clinics by US Paralympic coaches, training by the Army Marksmanship Unit, cycling training by Ride 2 Recovery, and adaptive sports equipment provided by the USO, the American Red Cross, the Air Force Wounded Warrior Program, the Navy's Safe Harbor, and the Marine Corps Wounded Warrior Regiment.
As in all adaptive/Paralympic athletic events, athletes will compete against others with similar challenges and the athletes will be grouped into different categories based on upper body injuries, lower boy injuries, spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injuries, and post-traumatic stress disorder.
Those who are interested in submitting a nomination package to be a competitor should request a packet through their chain of command, or from the following service representatives: U.S. Army, Master Sgt. James Shiver, firstname.lastname@example.org; U.S. Air Force, Capt. Sarah Bruno, email@example.com; U.S. Marine Corps, Lt. Col. Benjamin Hermantin, Benjamin.firstname.lastname@example.org; and U.S. Navy, HMCS Kenneth Montgomery, Kenneth.email@example.com. The deadline to register is March 1.