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PentUp Challenge gives PTSD sufferers chance to sample pentathlon

Modern Pentathlon

After the success of the inaugural event in 2017, the 2nd PentUp Challenge enabled sufferers of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) to once again take part in Modern Pentathlon in a friendly environment.

The Royal Military Academy in Sandhurst (GBR) played host once again to 36 Pent Up entrants and also incorporated the Army Modern Pentathlon Championships.

PentUp was founded by combat veterans Dr Simon Thompson and Jon Pallas and the competition Is organised by Sue Hyde, former competitions director for Pentathlon GB. It uses the sport of Modern Pentathlon for the therapy and treatment of serving and retired British Military personnel who are affected by PTSD.

The format and scoring system had to be adapted for a huge age range (20 to 63), with abilities varying from novice to Olympian. Most had no experience at all and trained for all five disciplines in the previous six months.

Dominic Mahony, Great Britain Olympic team bronze medallist in Seoul in 1988, said: “The organizing team did a superb job, the day ran like clockwork and had a wonderful atmosphere.

“For a sport that has so often been about ‘points per second’ I loved that at no stage in the day did I care what the scores were. There were so many inspiring personal achievements unfolding that mere ‘results’ seemed irrelevant. Brilliant!”

Current pentathlete Joanna Muir (GBR) said: “It was wonderful to attend another fantastic Pent Up Challenge. It is a really special event and I can speak for all the current athletes who were there as team managers that it was truly inspiring and humbling to be part of such a great day.”

Founder Jon Pallas added: “Many thanks to all the discipline directors and event officials for making the Pent Up 2018 Challenge such a brilliant event.

“It’s no secret than organising a Pent for 36 people requires a miracle of skill, planning, coordination, and administration. The nature of the mental condition we are providing recovery from, and the military service of those participating, means that its often difficult to explain who our vets are, how they got to be injured, and how they are recovering.”

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