QMU women's rugby vow that 'no-one is left behind' in stretcher carry charity challenge

QMU women's rugby vow that 'no-one is left behind' in stretcher carry charity challenge

​In an effort to raise money and awareness around concussion, this week Queen Margaret University women’s rugby team journeyed by foot from the university campus in Musselburgh to BT Murrayfield with a medical stretcher, to convey the message that ‘no-one is left behind’.

The stretcher carry challenge, created by student nurse and team captain Rowann Sinclair, saw nine players from the university side cover eight miles, taking it in turns to carry the stretcher, working as a team.

So far, the group have raised £260 for ‘Head for Change’, a start-up charitable foundation, pioneering positive change for brain health in sport.

“The hope had been to have someone on the stretcher, but due to covid restrictions that wasn’t possible,” said Rowann.

“I thought this would be a good team-building exercise, whilst promoting the message within our team that whether it’s on the pitch or off, no-one is left behind. It is everyone’s responsibility in the team to look out for each other, especially when it comes to concussion.

“Obviously our goal is to raise lots of money for Head for Change, but we hope that we’ll do a good job in raising awareness around head injuries more generally too.”

Concussion is something which the QMU women’s rugby team are familiar with as Rowann explained: “Unfortunately, over the years a number of our players have suffered from concussion as a result of playing the sport. Experiencing a concussion or sustaining a head-knock isn’t just a ‘bump’ to the head, it is a serious brain injury.

“It’s never a player’s intention to sustain a concussion, and whilst we always promote and practice safe contact, we want to make sure our players better recognise the signs of a potential concussion in themselves and with their fellow team-mates, as well as understand that head injuries must be taken seriously and there are protocols to follow.”

Setting off from the Musselburgh campus at 10.30am, the group arrived at BT Murrayfield in just three hours with big smiles on their faces, despite the wet conditions.

Speaking after their run, Rowann said: “We had a really enjoyable time completing the stretcher carry challenge. We had some people wave and cheer us on along the route which was a nice boost. I think our arms from carrying the stretcher and legs from walking and running will be a bit sore tomorrow, but it’s all for a good cause.

“It has been a difficult year for us because of coronavirus, as we haven’t been able to get any game time and training has been limited too. It was great to get out today and have a bit of fun for a good cause, especially as we are reaching the end of the academic year.

“Our fundraising page will stay open for a few more weeks to collect sponsorship, and we also have a raffle to win a Scotland shirt which was signed by this year’s men’s team, kindly donated to us by Scottish Rugby.”

If you’d like to sponsor the QMU women’s rugby team, click here.

To purchase a raffle ticket, click here.

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