Sights on the Commonwealth Games - Cameron Optometry | Cameron Optometry
Sights on the Commonwealth Games

Sights on the Commonwealth Games

Posted on 19th August 2014

Glasgow-Commonwealth
Cameron Optometry’s Gillian Bruce shares her experiences of working with the world’s finest athletes at the Commonwealth Games this summer.

Having volunteered at the Olympic Games in London I was selected as part of the team of eye experts for the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow. ! was part of the medical team which was made up of not just the obvious professionals like doctors and physios, but also podiatrists, sports massage therapists, dental teams, emergency doctors, crowd doctors, chiropractors, radiologists and of course optometrists.

In the build up to the Commonwealth games, I had spoken to many other volunteers, doing a wide variety of jobs at a whole host of venues, but I certainly felt I was the one who had landed the best role. Having the chance to work with athletes on a one to one basis in the Athletes’ Village was a real coup.

 

It is not fair to make comparisons between the Glasgow Commonwealth Games and the London Olympics as they are different events with very different budgets but there was something very special about the atmosphere within the polyclinic in Glasgow. The four-storey purpose built clinic in London was replaced by a partitioned, one room, temporary structure. I’m spoiled with fantastic equipment at Cameron Optometry and it wasn’t quite that high tech but our area was still kitted out with everything we needed to provide first class eye care.

 

The eye care service was a scaled back version of the Olympic service that provided spectacles for huge numbers of athletes and officials. Our daily team consisted of an optometrist, dispensing optician and ophthalmologist. We were on hand for all emergency eye care that might be required, as well as testing some individual’s eyes for the first time in their lives as many were unable to access care at home. We also assisted with repairs and replacements of spectacles and contact lenses.

 

Unsurprisingly Usain Bolt didn’t come looking for an eye test but I was fortunate to chat with and treat, some truly inspirational athletes. I greatly enjoyed testing the eyes of a female badminton player from the remote Norfolk Islands who has to practice on the only court on the island. It is an adapted basketball court that is also used as a dance floor, requiring masking tape to draw out the badminton lines each time they play. I was delighted to test the eyes of a young triple jumper from Trinidad, and then watch her from my seat at Hampden the next day receive a bronze medal. My favourite moment though was my chance to share half an hour with Kip Keino. Now in his 70’s he was a double Olympic Gold medalist and world record holder, and continues to be an inspiration to Kenyans through his foundation and the orphanages he runs.

 

This summer I only had to travel 60 miles from my front door to feel like I’d experienced the sunshine and warmth of the entire Commonwealth.


Related Posts

Could coloured lenses help your child at school?

02nd September 2021

Often when children are reluctant readers, it is that they find reading uncomfortable, perhaps experiencing the print moving or jumping around the page or appearing blurred. They may also miss or sk...

Read more

Living independently with low vision

13th July 2021

Our specialist low vision clinic launches on Thursday 19 August. For patients who are living with low vision, we offer a range of specific services to make this adaptation to living with visual impair...

Read more

Vision Therapy: training the brain to see well

08th July 2021

We know there is huge demand for vision therapy, and with only two qualified behavioural optometrists in Scotland, we are delighted that Emma Drewery will be with us a day a week from later this month...

Read more

COVID-19 advice

28th April 2021

This page will have our latest information on the care we can provide during the COVID-19 pandemic. You can also find information on our Facebook page. LATEST UPDATE: Weds, 28 Apr 2021 We are opera...

Read more