Ambassadors

MARK CLOUGHERTY

Drum roll please…. Introducing Skiggle’s first official ambassador!

We are so thrilled to introduce you to our official – and very first - Skiggle ambassador, Mark Clougherty. As a British Army veteran who spent 12 and a half years in the Royal Military Police before being medically discharged in 2013, Mark is a true example of ‘life coming before disability’ – something Skiggle as a disability charity is hugely passionate about.

Mark has been specially selected as one of only 65 athletes to represent Team UK at the Invictus Games in The Hague in spring 2022 and we’re delighted that he’ll be sharing some of his training updates and tips with us in the coming months. The Invictus Games is an international sport event for the wounded, injured and sick servicemen and women, both serving and veteran, and Mark will be competing across an amazing six disciplines – 100m, 200m, 400, 1,500m wheelchair athletics and the hand bike time trial and criterium.

Mark lives each day in constant pain from a number of conditions including Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) and Rhabdomyolysis, which affects his legs and hips, as well as suffering from Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) from a tour of Iraq. However, he doesn’t let his injuries hold him back and is determined to reach the top of his game in the disability sports arena. Despite only using a hand bike for the first time in late 2020, he has set himself a tough challenge of travelling 595km across Ireland in the Summer of 2022. He’ll be attempting to set a World Record for the fastest journey - from Mizen Head to Malin Head - Ireland’s equivalent of Land’s End to John O’Groats no less – in less than four days. We hope you’ll join us in cheering him on and we’re certainly going to be very proud to see Skiggle’s branding on his training jerseys!

Skiggle supports a wide range of people affected by all forms of disability, whether its Armed Forces veterans like Mark, to people with more profound disabilities and children and adults with complex special needs. Remember – life always comes before disability.

A journey to The Invictus Games

Mark will be sharing snippets of his rigorous training schedule ahead of next years' Invictus Games.

He will be sharing an insight into training both inside his home and out on the track through pictures, videos and top tips! A more in depth insight can be found on his Instagram page

The training routine is gruelling and often leaves Mark looking rather green around the gills, but after needing to take 11 months off "there is no feeling quite like being back out on the track!"

Skiggle will be supporting Mark as he embraces every wheel rotation, weight lift and pull up over the next 6 months. We hope you will join us in sharing in his journey with him too!

Plyometrics

Mark completes an explosive Plyometrics session every Saturday as part of his training for The Invictus Games. 

8fit.com defines Plyometrics training (plyos for short) as: "Plyometrics is a form of intense training that involves the use of a stretch and contraction sequence of muscle fibers to generate great strength at a high speed."

With the support of his coach, incorporating Plyos into his training schedule will improve Mark's speed and power, which are crucial to a rapid and explosive start as he takes off at the start line. 

It's time for the Invictus Games!

This weekend (17th April 2022) sees the start of the Invictus Games in The Hague in the Netherlands.

Mark is part of the 59-strong Team UK and will be taking part in the 100m, 200m, 400m, and 1,500m wheelchair athletics, the crit (criterium) race and time trials on the handbike, and the individual indoor rowing.

With his wife, daughter, and mum all making up part of his support team, Mark’s first event will be the Athletics Heats on track on Sunday 17th April.

Catching up with Mark before the games, he said: "it’s something that’s not quite hit home that I’m going to be wearing a Union Jack at an international sporting event. It will make me so proud. But for me, the main thing is competing for my family, they’re my priority.... (read more)“

You can watch highlights of the Invictus Games The Hague 2020 weekdays on BBC One starting from Sunday 17th April at 4.20pm.

Good luck Mark from everyone at Team Skiggle! #IG22

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