Member Richard shares his inspirational rehabilitation story after almost losing his leg in a motorbike accident.
Richard Vanloon became a member at Holmes Chapel Community Centre the day after being discharged from hospital after a serious motorbike accident. Just 14 months later, his injuries that he was told may be irreversible, are practically healed.
Richard suffered a crushed leg that was so severe, there was potential for his lower left leg to be amputated. Post accident, despite Richard being a regular gym user, he was advised against exercise, informed that he wouldn’t walk for at least 18 months, and told he would never run again. However once Richard eventually found out that he was due to be discharged, he rang Holmes Chapel Community Centre from his hospital bed to ask if he could become one of their members despite his injury.
The team supported his decision to incorporate exercise into his rehabilitation and on meeting him and observing his training, were amazed at his positive attitude and determination. Richie Knight, Leisure Assistant at Holmes Chapel Community Centre, observed Richard’s journey from the beginning. He explains, “Due to his injuries, Richard used methods of training that I had never witnessed before. I remember him placing his good foot on a bench whilst raising his injured leg, still in a cast, in the air and doing press ups! His positive mind-set and determination was and still is, inspiring to witness. Without this, and his commitment to using the gym, he wouldn’t have recovered like he has so far.”
Richard believes that without the staff at Holmes Chapel Community Centre facilitating his ambition, he would have struggled to remain motivated throughout his rehabilitation journey. “I knew that I could ask any of the staff for help if I needed it. After seeing the staff daily, we became friends and I know even now that I can count on them to support me”
Richard now stresses the importance of maintaining a positive mind-set and urges anyone who is apprehensive to take the first step into their fitness journey to “Have a clear goal. As long as you believe in it, then you will achieve it”. Richard’s goal initially was to be able to walk again. Now, a mere 14 months later, he can walk with ease and is even beginning to use the treadmills in the gym to run too.
If you would like help and support with getting started in the gym or making lifestyle changes, we have a range of services and programmes available to you. From health programmes and Lifestyle Coaches to Personal Trainers and Fitness Instructors there is always somebody available to help and guide you. If you would like more information please visit our website www.everybody.org.uk or email [email protected].