A double world champion athlete from Rushden has been named the Northamptonshire Sports Award Disabled Sports Achiever of the Year after receiving support from various charities.
Jo Redman, 25, has Asperger’s Syndrome and she’s used kick boxing to help with her condition.
She said: “I really didn’t expect to win. It is an honour and it’s also a great way to make people aware of Asperger’s. I’ve also just found out that I’ve passed my exams and I’m a fully qualified sport and remedial massage therapist. It really has been a busy few months but it has all been worth it. Thanks to everyone who has supported me through it.”
Jo recently successfully defended her World Kick Boxing title in Montreal, Canada, making her a two-time world champion.
She has had a tough year due to injury and her being busy training to become a sports masseur.
She also found travelling to the tournament daunting due to her condition and had to rely on her husband Adam to help her through the airport.
She added: “I won the women’s light contact 70kgs category which I won last year too. I wasn’t fully fit due to injury earlier in the year but I trained six times a week in the run up to the tournament. I also picked up a silver medal in the women’s light contact team.
“Winning my second world title was a massive achievement for me after the injury problems I had this year and having been focused on studying as well. I’m already looking to next year with the two big competitions for me which are the Irish Open – one of the biggest martial arts competitions in the world – in March and the World Championships October/November next year, which will be in Italy.”
Jo now gives talks to fellow sufferers and helps them to manage their conditions.
She is backed by the Swivel Club charity, which holds most of its charity events at Rushden Bowls Club.
Geoff Goss, Swivel Club secretary, said: “We were pleased when Jo won her second title but to get county recognition of her achievements is just amazing.
“She has worked hard this year to overcome injury and it has paid off. Well done Jo.”