For Luke Almond, there simply aren't enough hours in the day. Whilst studying for a degree in Sports Therapy at the University of Worcester, he also immersed himself in the intensity of an elite level international sports career.
Luke has a visual impairment. He was a member of the Great Britain adaptive rowing squad throughout his time at University, balancing the demands of his studies with the ferocity of his training schedule. He made his competitive debut for GB at the 2011 World Cup in Munich, bringing home a bronze medal.
Having tasted the thrill of international competition, Luke redoubled his training in an effort to win a seat in the boat for the London 2012 Paralympic Games. The competition for places was fierce, and despite narrowly missing out on one of the prized Paralympic berths, Luke remains proud of his achievement.
He says: “"I was disappointed not to make the team, but I was proud of the effort I put in.
"The University did everything they could to support me in my bid. I was granted a scholarship to help meet my training costs, and the Institute of Sport staff were very helpful."
Since missing out on his London dream, Luke has focussed on completing his studies, and on building a career as a practicing therapist, having already secured a job in the industry.
Luke explains: “I work as a Sports Masseur at Kidderminster Harriers. I had a good placement there whilst on my degree, and when I finished studying, I approached them again and they agreed to take me on.
“I am also working as Head Therapist at a local special school, and I have private work at a natural therapy centre.”
On top of his achievements in rowing and his fledgling success in terms of his Sports Therapy career, Luke’s determination and drive to succeed have also seen him climb Kilimanjaro, trek across Nepal and sail the Atlantic.