Budding football star overcomes hip injury to earn 2:1
A FORMER Arsenal trainee has overcome a hip condition that left her bed-ridden for several months and ended her football career, and will pick up a 2:1 in her degree from the University of Bedfordshire next week.
Georgie Tweddell was doing charity work with disabled children during her university holidays last summer when she suffered an injury while wind-surfing.
She initially thought it was a minor injury but an MRI scan showed it was in fact hip impingement syndrome - a condition where the hip joint rubs against the socket, causing severe pain. That meant a five-and-a-half hour operation to dislocate her hip, shave down the bones and screw them back together, and led to Georgie having to finish the final year of her degree from her in bed in her family home in Harlow.
But the 22-year-old still earned a 2:1 and will collect her degree next week.
She said: “It has been so hard. When I first went into hospital I was under the impression that I’d be okay in 12 weeks or so, so I told my lecturer that I’d have a short break and then I’d be back at university.
“But I had no idea of the extent of the condition and what it would mean. I spent two weeks in hospital When I could not get out of bed, and then I had to learn to walk again.
“I was back at home and I had carers for four months. I am very active and sporty, but I had to rely on everyone else. That wasn’t easy.”
Georgie, who lived in York Street for the first two years of her degree, was studying for a BA (Hons) in sport and community leadership.
In her final year she only visited the university four times, but was kept up to speed thanks to phone calls, emails, and support from tutor Paul Beedie and her classmates.
Although Georgie played some rugby at university, she grew up as a keen trampolinist. But at the age of 11 she had football trials for Leyton Orient, and went on to play for the youth teams of West Ham United and Arsenal before playing semi-professionally for DSA Future in Philadelphia.
She then became one of the few women in the UK to earn a UEFA B licence - the second-highest qualification in football coaching.
Georgie now plans to take her UEFA A licence, but sees her future not in professional football but in working with disabled youngsters.
She said: “Getting my degree has helped me a lot with my confidence. Now I want to work with disabled charities and to help children take part in sports and be active.
“Experiencing my own difficulties has made me appreciate their position a lot more.”
Georgie will be among the University Of Bedfordshire class of 2012 who graduate next week.
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Monday 20 May 2013
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