Ex-serviceman aims for gold and top ranking for Rio

A WOUNDED ex-serviceman from Musselburgh, who lost both his legs in Afghanistan, is participating in a top power lifting competition this week.

Former staff sergeant Micky Yule. Picture: comp

Micky Yule, a former staff sergeant who served with the Royal Engineers, is competing in the Para-Powerlifting European Open Championships in Hungary.

The father-of-one was injured in Helmand province when he stood on an explosive five years ago.

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But after participating in the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games and winning gold in an international weight lifting contest in Mexico earlier this year, the 36-year-old has said he is on track for the Olympic Games in Rio.

He said: “I am aiming to come back with a gold medal at the Euros and secure a top eight world ranking for Rio qualification.

“This is a massive competition and one I see as allowing me to take a step closer to competing in Rio next year.”

Micky, who is competing in the -80kg category today was a part of the army power lifting team before his injury.

He is now part of the Help for Heroes’ Sports Recovery Programme and has used power lifting as a huge part of his rehabilitation and recovery.

Jayne Kavanagh, performance pathway manager in Sports Recovery at Help For Heroes, said: “We wish Mick the best of luck in Hungary.

“This is a really important competition on his road to Rio next year and will provide an opportunity to secure important qualifying points.

“Micky is a great example of what can be achieved post injury.

“In our military athletes you’re seeing people who are developing resilient skills, and that is why sport is so powerful in that it has psychological and physiological benefits that enable them to cope and manage better.

“That is what we are trying to do, along with their national governing bodies, to help them transition effectively and rebuild their life after injury.”

This week’s event is featuring around 150 athletes from 25 different countries.

Micky was two months into a tour of Afghanistan in July 2010, with the Royal Engineers, when he was injured.

It was previously reported that surgeons had said his size and strength had saved his life.

Following two weeks in intensive care and eight in hospital, he went to the army rehab centre in Headley Court, Surrey.

There, he faced a gruelling period of rehabilitation as he battled to come to terms with his devastating injuries.

Learning to walk again on prosthetic legs, he seized the chance to return to the sport he loved and Help For Heros Recovery programme has funded his equipment.

Help for Heroes is a British charity that was launched in October 2007 to help provide better facilities for wounded British servicemen and women.