The Invictus Games Toronto 2017 Organizing Committee announced today that they will fund a research study by Dalhousie University and Canadian Institute for Military & Veteran Health Research (CIMVHR) researcher Celina Shirazipour. The study will examine the role of adaptive sport in the rehabilitation of ill, wounded and injured military personnel and their families, through a comprehensive evaluation of the competitors participating in the upcoming Invictus Games, which will be held in Toronto in September 2017.
The announcement was made at the 7th Annual Military & Veteran Health Research Forum, co-hosted by the CIMVHR, the University of British Columbia and the University of Victoria. The Forum was held in Vancouver, B.C. on November 21 to 23, 2016.
“The Invictus Games in Toronto provide an unparalleled opportunity to fill research gaps by allowing for the exploration of sport participation and its effects on the health and well-being of military personnel and their families in the short and long term,” said Shirazipour.
“I have experienced first-hand the healing power of sport, having turned to fitness after I was medically released from the Canadian Armed Forces after 15 years of service,” said Bruno Guevremont, team captain, 2016 Invictus Games Team Canada. “My hope is that this study provides fact-based proof — beyond the anecdotal evidence — of the benefits derived from participating in adaptive sport competitions, so additional sport programming can be made available for wounded and injured military.”
“By funding this study, one of the potential outcomes will be to demonstrate that the Invictus Games are more than just another sporting event; that they are a means of helping competitors overcome mental and physical injuries sustained as a result of their service,” said Michael Burns, chief executive officer, Invictus Games Toronto 2017 Organizing Committee. “Our hope is that these results would encourage further development of adaptive sport programs, therapies and events for ill, wounded and injured military personnel in Canada and internationally.”
Preliminary study findings will be presented at next year’s Military & Veteran Health Research Forum, which will be held in Toronto in September 2017 during the Invictus Games Toronto 2017. The Forum will see hundreds of academics from around the world gather to discuss recent health research studies concerning military, veterans and their families.
The Invictus Games were established by Prince Harry in 2014. They are the only international adaptive sporting event for wounded, ill and injured active duty and veteran service members. Presented by Jaguar Land Rover, the third Invictus Games will welcome 550 competitors from 17 nations competing in 12 sports, including wheelchair rugby, swimming and, new to the Invictus Games this year, golf.