Sport Wales' consultant doctor, Dr Mark Ridgewell has been
practicing since 1986 with a history in sports medicine that spans
a varied combination of sports.
From athletics, swimming, cycling, disability sport, gymnastics
and shooting, Dr Ridgewell provides medical support to some of
Wales' most high profile athletes including Jazz Carlin, Becky James, Nathan
Stephens and David Davies.
Dr Ridgewell says;
"I assess and advice athletes on a whole range of injuries and
illness that could potentially effect or impair their ability to
train and perform. I advise on treatment and rehabilitation, give
anti-doping advice and general support."
After developing an interest in Sports Medicine almost
immediately after qualifying as a doctor in 1986, Mark soon went on
to complete a Masters degree in Sport and Exercise Medicine at the
University of Bath and also passed the Scottish Royal Colleges
Diploma in 1999. He has been working with elite and high
His CV includes roles at Swansea Rugby Club and Wales U18 and
U21 rugby teams, Chief Medical Officer roles for the England
Cricket Board, the Osprey's and the Football Association of Wales
and Dr Ridgewell has also travelled to two Commonwealth Games as
Team Doctor for Team Wales.
One of the athletes Dr Ridgewell works with on a regular basis
is Commonwealth bronze medal-winning swimmer Georgia Davies.
"Everyone who competes at a high level wants to make sure they
do everything they possibly can to become better. In swimming it
can come down to 100ths and 10ths of a second so if anyone can do
anything to improve my performance then I'm definitely open to
taking that on board.
"We're really lucky to have Mark as our doctor. We work on
preventative things as swimming is a non-contact sport, so it's
more about getting ill rather than injured, especially as we're
training at such a high level and for so long each day. We take
vitamins and supplements and he's great at recommending everything.
And also we have blood tests to make sure our iron levels are
right, so it's great to have someone who understands about sport
and obviously about medicine and can combine the two."
Five members of staff from the Sport Wales Institute are being
followed by BBC Radio Wales to look at the work going on behind the
scenes in the build up to London 2012.
Listen to Mark Ridgewell talking about his role at Sport Wales