Thirty-three representatives from Warrior Transition Units, Wounded Warrior Battalions and Veteran Affairs (VA) medical clinics came to Bethesda, Md., recently to participate in a three-day training camp to build and improve their respective Ride 2 Recovery cycling rehabilitation programs.
Project HERO (Healing Exercise Rehabilitation Opportunities) is designed as a train-the-trainer camp, where vital cycling skills such as organizing and leading rides, bike mechanics, maintenance, adaptations and safety and even bike building and fitting are taught to hospital and military representatives.
Project HERO National Director Barbara Springer said the camp aimed to empower local cycling representatives so they can promote a fuller, quicker rehabilitation for injured servicemen and women.
“These reps will go back to their locations and each will be qualified to start up a Project HERO program at their own hospital or unit,” Springer said. “Each will possess the knowledge and skills required not only to lead a ride, but also to help their unit’s healing heroes reach their highest level of function by using cycling as part of physical and psychological rehabilitation.”
Army veteran Marina Libro is developing a Project HERO cycling program with the McGuire Veterans Hospital in Richmond, Va. For her, learning how to fit riders for a bike and seeing how a maintenance shop was set up was the most useful elements of the training.
“I’ve got the people at the VA behind me now supporting a cycling program, but I didn’t have the technical knowledge or mechanical skills to make it all happen,” she said. “Now I know what I need to set up a bike room and I have the confidence to make it successful.” - Joseph Andrew Lee, USO Staff Writer
More from the USO
Nov 13, 2017
‘My Favorite Part of this Whole Deployment’: USO Camp Lemonnier Surprises Gate Guard with Birthday Cake
When deployed Army Sgt. Sean Brocious woke up on his 23rd birthday in Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti, Africa, he expected the day to pass, just like the other 285 days he’d spent far from home. But thanks to a chance conversation he had at the base gate, he received a USO birthday surprise he'll never forget.
Nov 11, 2017
USO Pathfinder Helped This Former Soldier Pursue His Passion for Music
Music is something that is therapeutic for James Furgurson – a former unit supply specialist and a current USO volunteer – and something he’s passionate about, so he turned to USO Pathfinder to help him pursue a career in the music field.