FORT BRAGG, North Carolina – U.S. Army Sgt. Nichole Crane of the Joint Base Lewis-McChord Soldier Recovery Unit did not recognize the impact archery would have on her life or the power of the adaptive sport.
Crane, who competes in different events at the US Army Trials at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, said archery is now one of his favorite sports.
“It helps me focus on what’s in front of me,” she said.
As Crane prepared to fire the arrow, she focused her breathing on getting the perfect shot.
However, the deliberate breathing didn’t come easy for Crane; her openness and the response from the recovery specialists proved to be very beneficial as they taught her different techniques that work for her, she said.
One of the things Crane said she likes about the Army recovery care program is that she was able to receive one-on-one coaching from the specialists who showed up during her archery practices. .
“Competing here was a personal goal for me after finishing in JBLM for behavioral health,” Crane said.
Trying out different sports and being told she was pretty good encouraged her to keep going and compete, she said.
Crane said she thought it would be a good deal for her to make it to Warrior Games 2022.
“I think I did well,” Crane said of his first archery match. “We were kind of making adjustments as we went along, but it was fun. I was having more or less fun. It was relaxing for me because I can focus specifically on the target. I don’t have thinking about all these other thoughts that come up.”
Having struggled in the past to come to terms with failures, to move forward, Crane said she is excited about the tools she is receiving through ARCP that will benefit her now and in the future. .
Thanks to the help she received, she said she was able to accept what she did and focus on the next thing.
“They teach me to literally focus on what’s in front of me, one specific thing at a time,” Crane said.
Because of the impact the sport had on her, Crane decided to purchase archery equipment.
“I definitely plan to take the skills from here, especially archery,” Crane said. “I even told my husband I was going to buy a bow, and he said ‘let’s do it’ because it helped calm a ground for me.”
Crane pays tribute to his SRU, who he has been great to work with, she said.
“I was talking to (my husband) two weeks ago, and he said you looked different; you don’t seem upset or stressed; you’re pretty relaxed,” Crane said.
Jessie White, U.S. Army veteran, former Army Trials athlete and current archery coach of eight years, testifies to this.
“They have no choice,” he said. “(Archery) allows that relaxation because the brain doesn’t go crazy. They focus on what they’re doing and not on all the other things going on around them. one who was irritated before, when he comes to the archery range and starts shooting, there’s just this calming effect, and he’s focused and more relaxed.”
This year’s U.S. Army Trials at Fort Bragg, May 4-9, provided ill and injured active duty soldiers across the country an opportunity to compete and a chance to represent the Army of the team at the DOD Warrior games August 16-29 in Orlando, Florida.
For more information on JBLM, click here.