Rowing Program Helps Vets

 In News

Jim,

After reading your pieces, especially the part on silence, I feel it necessary to share my experience on what I’ve learned from rowing.

Being a combat vet of the Marine Corps I suffer from TBI (traumatic brain injury) PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder) and also an addict/alcoholic. 2.5 years ago I reached a place in my life where I no longer wished to be here but miracles happen and I reached out to the VA for help.

Two months into the beginning of this new life I was introduced to Rochester Community inclusive Rowing (RCiR) and more importantly the Joy of Sculling. This was the first profound change in my recovery and it is one that has given me back a life of joy and freedom. For the first time in a couple decades I can say I enjoy things I used to and so much more because I found sculling.

Sculling has taught me how to relax and to get out of myself. When you write about being alone in the shell, this was my greatest fear in life, alone with myself. By developing trust in my mentors, Denny and Tim, I began a growth process that taught me it’s ok to be vulnerable (the catch), powerful (swing and leg drive) then relax as the fingers feather the blade and then relax (recovery). Vulnerability and relaxation are 2 new tools for me. These are tools that I can translate into life and are allowing me to succeed in many aspects of my life.

Much respect,
RJ

Rowing Program Helps Vets

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