Tag Archives: rugby

Sport transformed my life! – Matt Lancett

Photo of Matt kancett charging toward a player to tackle him in a game of VI Rugby - Sport transformed my life! - Matt Lancett
“Sport transformed my life and gave me back the confidence to live life to the fullest”

Four years ago Matt Lancett suffered a stroke which resulted in him having a visual impairment.  It was a blow to his independence and confidence and, as a keen sportsman, he felt his life had no future.  All this changed when he discovered and started taking part, in VI sport.

We caught up with Matt to find out about his story and how sport has changed his life.

Matt Lancett is a happily married 45-year-old man with two children.  It was on his wedding anniversary that the stroke caused the loss of his left field of vision in both eyes (a condition called left homonymous hemianopia) and his life was changed forever.

 

Matt and family at a wedding
Matt and family at a wedding

Prior to his stroke Matt was a qualified butcher, played football regularly and was a keen runner, which included him completing the London Marathon.

After coming out of hospital he suffered with balance issues, severe loss of confidence and anxiety for the next 12 months.

But his fortunes changed when his brother told him about a woman with a visual impairment, who was playing rugby at Warriors Community Foundation in nearby Worcester.

Matt said:

“I’d started to think about playing football again, but it was too far to travel and I didn’t have the confidence. As rugby was on my doorstep, the anxiety of travel was removed so I decided to get on the train for the short journey and give it a try.
Matt Lancett and the Worcester Warriors
Matt Lancett and the Worcester Warriors

Matt passing rugby ball

“Having a ball back in my hand was incredible. It was instantly a huge lift to be playing some type of sport again.”

But it wasn’t just the physical activity aspect that was important Matt explained: “I hadn’t socialised outside of the family for a year so to be back chatting and travelling with other visually impaired people was so uplifting. I had the chance to speak to other visually impaired people about how they have overcome their challenges.”

In a short period of time, Matt found himself taking part in more sports and he joined the local VI cricket team. He also now takes part in running again with a guide and plays football.

Matt Lancett running

He found through running, football, cricket, and in particular rugby, a new sense of freedom.

His confidence steadily grew. There were no longer constant worries about bumping into things. No worries about cars or other people around as he knew he safely on a sports pitch.

As well as playing locally in Worcester, he is part of the Change Foundation team in London. To take part in this he travels independently each month, even though this is challenging.

But the rewards have been life-changing! Matt was lucky enough to join the UK team in Japan to play VI rugby as part of the rugby World Cup arrangements in 2019. He travelled to Tokyo to compete in a three-test series against rivals from Japan and New Zealand. For Matt, it was an experience of a lifetime.

He looks back to how it all started:

“If it wasn’t for my brother telling me about VI rugby things could have been very different. I had to have some drive to get up and try things out and I would encourage everyone to try something new – you might just reap the same benefits I have.”
Matt Lancett and the England Rugby Team in Japan
Matt Lancett and the England Rugby Team in Japan

Prior to getting active again, Matt thought he was a 40-year-old man with no future. He now knows this is not the case, but he needed the support of family and his friends to realise what could still be achieved.

He is now working with Warriors Community Foundation to promote visually impaired rugby to people in the Worcester area and beyond. He said: “The aim is to roll out the game to all parts of the UK, to remove travel and cost barriers that exist and provide opportunities at a local level.

“I back working and my family more broadly has benefited. My wife has got some of her freedom back to do things just for herself. She has the confidence that I am taking part in activities safely and working alongside people who understand what support is needed.’

Sport and physical activity was the springboard that Matt needed to get some part of his old life back. He added:

“I encourage all visually impaired people to try something new as I know the impact it can have. It has transformed my life and given me back the confidence to live life to the fullest.”

 

If you would like to try a  blind or partially sighted sport, please contact our Sport Development Officer: martin.symcox@metroblindsport.org or call 07956 292046

 

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Vision Impaired Rugby E15 14 March

Vision Impaired Rugby in East London

COME AND TRY VISUALLY IMPAIRED RUGBY!

Organised by Metro Blind Sport, The Change Foundation and East London Sports Association.  Monthly Sessions are Free to all.

In recent years, The Change Foundation (TCF) in the UK, with its visually impaired coaches and players, has developed VI rugby as a seven-a-side touch version, played with an adapted ball that makes a noise to help players locate it when it’s moving.

The sport has grown in popularity since it launched 4 years ago with people playing across the UK. The main differences between mainstream rugby and VI rugby are that the ball contains small ball bearings, or bells, to make it audible, you do two-hand touch tackles (essentially like touch rugby). But, you still score in the same way, you pass to one another in the same way, and you work as a team in the same way.

This allows the game to be safe and accessible.

The gameplay takes into consideration a wide range of sight conditions whilst maintaining the fundamental codes, laws and spectacle of rugby.

Why not give it a try! It’s free and is going to be running every month with expert coaching available.

Venue: Sports Hub E15, 71 Holland Rd, London E15 3BP
Date:  Starting 14 March 2020,  Every 2nd Saturday   Time:  10 am – 12 pm
Contact: martin.symcox@metroblindsport.org  Phone: 07508 958 927

Meet and Greet available at West Ham Station TFL
Customer Services Point from 9:30 am

For more information, please contact Charlie Raven,
Sports Development  Officer at Metro Blind Sport

Email: martin.symcox@metroblindsport.org  Phone: 07508 958 927

 

 

VI Rugby 25 April in E15

Vision Impaired Rugby in East London
Venue:
Sports Hub E15, 71 Holland Rd, London E15 3BP
Time:
10.00 am - 12.00 pm
Phone:
07508 958 927
Date:
25th April 2020
Cost:
FREE


COME AND TRY VISUALLY IMPAIRED RUGBY!

Organised by Metro Blind Sport, The Change Foundation and East London Sports Association.  Monthly Sessions are Free to all.

In recent years, The Change Foundation (TCF) in the UK, with its visually impaired coaches and players, has developed VI rugby as a seven-a-side touch version, played with an adapted ball that makes a noise to help players locate it when it’s moving.

The sport has grown in popularity since it launched 4 years ago with people playing across the UK. The main differences between mainstream rugby and VI rugby are that the ball contains small ball bearings, or bells, to make it audible, you do two-hand touch tackles (essentially like touch rugby). But, you still score in the same way, you pass to one another in the same way, and you work as a team in the same way.

This allows the game to be safe and accessible.

The gameplay takes into consideration a wide range of sight conditions whilst maintaining the fundamental codes, laws and spectacle of rugby.

Why not give it a try! It’s free and is going to be running every month with expert coaching available.

Venue: Sports Hub E15, 71 Holland Rd, London E15 3BP
Date:  25 April 2020,  Every 2nd Saturday   Time:  10 am – 12 pm
Contact: martin.symcox@metroblindsport.org  Phone: 07508 958 927

Meet and Greet available at West Ham Station TFL
Customer Services Point from 9:30 am

For more information, please contact Charlie Raven,
Sports Development  Officer at Metro Blind Sport

Email: martin.symcox@metroblindsport.org  Phone: 07508 958 927

 

 

VI Rugby 11 April Cancelled

Vision Impaired Rugby in East London
Venue:
Cancelled
Sports Hub E15, 71 Holland Rd, London E15 3BP
Time:
10.00 am - 12.00 pm
Phone:
07508 958 927
Date:
11th April 2020
Cost:
FREE


 VI Rugby 11 April in E15 Cancelled

We regret to inform you that the VI Rugby on the 11 April will be cancelled with immediate effect; until further notice. This is due to the current health situation.

Metro Blind Sport advises checking the latest government Coronavirus advice: link here  and the NHS advice on infection control: NHS Advice

COME AND TRY VISUALLY IMPAIRED RUGBY!

Organised by Metro Blind Sport, The Change Foundation and East London Sports Association.  Monthly Sessions are Free to all.

In recent years, The Change Foundation (TCF) in the UK, with its visually impaired coaches and players, has developed VI rugby as a seven-a-side touch version, played with an adapted ball that makes a noise to help players locate it when it’s moving.

The sport has grown in popularity since it launched 4 years ago with people playing across the UK. The main differences between mainstream rugby and VI rugby are that the ball contains small ball bearings, or bells, to make it audible, you do two-hand touch tackles (essentially like touch rugby). But, you still score in the same way, you pass to one another in the same way, and you work as a team in the same way.

This allows the game to be safe and accessible.

The gameplay takes into consideration a wide range of sight conditions whilst maintaining the fundamental codes, laws and spectacle of rugby.

Why not give it a try! It’s free and is going to be running every month with expert coaching available.

Venue: Sports Hub E15, 71 Holland Rd, London E15 3BP
Date:  11 April 2020,  Every 2nd Saturday   Time:  10 am – 12 pm
Contact: martin.symcox@metroblindsport.org  Phone: 07508 958 927

Meet and Greet available at West Ham Station TFL
Customer Services Point from 9:30 am

For more information, please contact Charlie Raven,
Sports Development  Officer at Metro Blind Sport

Email: martin.symcox@metroblindsport.org  Phone: 07508 958 927

 

 

Vision Impaired Rugby 28 March E15

Vision Impaired Rugby in East London
Venue:
Sports Hub E15, 71 Holland Rd, London E15 3BP
Time:
10.00 am - 12.00 pm
Phone:
07508 958 927
Date:
28th March 2020
Cost:
FREE


COME AND TRY VISUALLY IMPAIRED RUGBY!

Organised by Metro Blind Sport, The Change Foundation and East London Sports Association.  Monthly Sessions are Free to all.

In recent years, The Change Foundation (TCF) in the UK, with its visually impaired coaches and players, has developed VI rugby as a seven-a-side touch version, played with an adapted ball that makes a noise to help players locate it when it’s moving.

The sport has grown in popularity since it launched 4 years ago with people playing across the UK. The main differences between mainstream rugby and VI rugby are that the ball contains small ball bearings, or bells, to make it audible, you do two-hand touch tackles (essentially like touch rugby). But, you still score in the same way, you pass to one another in the same way, and you work as a team in the same way.

This allows the game to be safe and accessible.

The gameplay takes into consideration a wide range of sight conditions whilst maintaining the fundamental codes, laws and spectacle of rugby.

Why not give it a try! It’s free and is going to be running every month with expert coaching available.

Venue: Sports Hub E15, 71 Holland Rd, London E15 3BP
Date:  28 March 2020,  Every 2nd Saturday   Time:  10 am – 12 pm
Contact: martin.symcox@metroblindsport.org  Phone: 07508 958 927

Meet and Greet available at West Ham Station TFL
Customer Services Point from 9:30 am

For more information, please contact Charlie Raven,
Sports Development  Officer at Metro Blind Sport

Email: martin.symcox@metroblindsport.org  Phone: 07508 958 927