On the Day for People with Disabilities

Psychological and physical boundaries can be shifted. No other sport event shows this like the Invictus Games. Our article for the international day of peoples with disabilities shows you why.

It is the everyday barriers that create a disability. There are wheelchair users who stand in front of a step or traumatised people who want to buy bread at the bakery and watch the entrance from the other side of the street. Disability is not always congenital, an injury or wounding can also bring disability. Perhaps disability is also just a matter of age. Barriers can be overcome and one’s own mental and physical limits can be pushed. Sport can be a building block in the individual rehabilitation process.
For Para table tennis athlete Sandra Mikolaschek (Borussia Düsseldorf), sport can above all support the discovery of new abilities: “For most people, the numerous everyday barriers are hardly noticeable and by that I don’t just mean the obvious ones like getting on the tram, but also above all the restricted range of movement, like reaching for a glass of water. Sport can be a way to discover and promote new skills – something the Invictus Games also stand for.”

Sport motivates many people beyond their discipline. Through sporting goals, those affected find new courage and also set new goals in life. In this way, sport creates a new, solid structure for everyday life.
“Soldiers need a special way back into everyday life. But the clear structure of everyday sport can help us,” emphasises Stefan Huss, Ambassador for the Invictus Games 2023 and former team captain of the German team; “We need a lot of understanding and support from our families and friends, because we are often not able to talk about our experiences. All competitors share traumatic experiences that have left traces on the body or in the soul. Despite the multitude of experiences and paths that have led us to participate in the Games, we are a community of destiny. We encourage each other on our way. Our past and memories will accompany us throughout our lives, but the personal success of having pushed our own limits and taken part in the Games can carry us even afterwards”.

Especially the immediate environment of the servicemen and women feels the changes and challenges. When the life of a loved one changes fundamentally after a wound, injury or illness, it is also the families and friends who often try to their own mental and physical limits to reshape their life together. The Invictus Games also aims to recognise and honour their work, effort and sacrifice in the process of changing their lives.

“For me personally, the Invictus Games helped me understand my husband better. The exchange with the friends and families of other participants and participants, this feeling of being understood, has helped us unbelievably to continue on this path together,” describes Evelyn Huss, who as the wife of Stefan Huss is also involved in voluntary work for veterans.
The step or shopping at the bakery do not have to remain a barrier. The Invictus Games want to be an inspiration – not only for wounded, injured or sick soldiers, but also for society. This also includes creating ever new places of encounter where a society can give itself its vision for living together.
Our vision for 2023 is “A Home For Respect. It is you, the visitors, who carry on the spirit of respect and cohesion through proximity and personal encounters.