Darren’s Journey

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Darren Smith our Client of the Month!

Here’s Darren’s Story…

Darren was diagnosed with a rare liver condition secondary to Crohn’s disease and at Christmas 2016 became so ill that he needed a life-saving liver transplant.

Darren has been working hard to improve his fitness and strength and to prevent any injuries stopping his journey.

Ha has since regained his fitness and returned to the sport he loves, swimming.

Lechlade man, Darren has had a busy sporting summer competing at various levels in swimming.

With events ranging from pool based masters competitions to open water events including the Lechlade Lions Open Water swim at Bowmoor lake to national and international success, it has been a busy summer.

For transplant athletes, staying healthy and fit is key to a successful life and to this end Transplant Sport encourage a competitive attitude at all levels.

Representing his transplant hospital, QEHB, Birmingham, Darren raced in the British Transplant Games held in Newport, Wales in July in all distances of freestyle and to his delight became British age group Champion in the 200m event achieving Gold in his race.

However, this was just the warm-up for the main event this year as Darren then went on to compete in the World Transplant Games in Newcastle representing Team GB&NI.

An incredible week started with the opening ceremony parade of athletes from all around the world and 60 countries parading through the streets of Newcastle to a hero’s welcome as the games got underway on the 17th August.

The main competitions then began, lasting all week and Darren was delighted to achieve a new world ranking of 5th for his 200m event.

More personal best times and top 10 rankings followed alongside a lifetime of memories shared with his family who were all able to watch and cheer.

If you watched the documentary “Transplant Games” on BBC at the beginning of September, you may have been able to hear them! If you haven’t seen it then it is still available on iPlayer.

Darren would like to thank sincerely everyone who has supported him in any way this year – from his physiotherapist, Dale, his swim coach, to friends and family – he couldn’t have done it without you all.

Now he is back home, training has resumed as Darren starts his quest to become European champion at the next games to be held in Dublin, and the British Games in Coventry (which will be the qualifier for the 2021 World Games in Houston Texas) next summer.

Darren is an inspiration to us all with his hard work and dedication to achieve his goals regardless of illness and set backs.

We look forward to working with Darren in the future and his continued health and success!

Have a look at our other inspiring client journeys and incredible stories

Thanks for reading…

Kate Markland

Clinic Founder

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