Invictus Tattoos Credit BFBS 261018
Invictus Games

What is the Invictus Games?

All you need to know about the Invictus Games, which were founded by Prince Harry.

Invictus Tattoos Credit BFBS 261018

The Invictus Games is an international multi-sport event launched in 2014 by the Duke of Sussex after taking inspiration from the 2013 Warrior Games.

The adaptive event is aimed at wounded, injured or sick Armed Forces personnel and veterans, and it takes its name from the Latin word 'Invictus'meaning 'unconquered' or 'undefeated'.

The Invictus Games 2020, the fifth tournament instalment of the games, was held in The Hague in the Netherlands from 16-22 April 2022 after the coronavirus pandemic led to it being postponed twice.

Watch: Could wheelchair tennis return to the Invictus Games?

It had been due to take place in 2021, after being first postponed in 2020.

Thirteen countries participated in 2014, and 20 nations competed in The Hague.

Five hundred participants competed in archery, athletics, indoor rowing, the Jaguar Land Rover driving challenge, powerlifting, cycling, sitting volleyball, wheelchair basketball, swimming and wheelchair rugby.

Dates for the sixth edition of the Invictus Games in the German city of Dusseldorf in 2023 have been confirmed.

Where have the Invictus Games been held so far?

The first Invictus Games took place in 2014 at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London, followed by the second event at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Orlando, Florida in 2016.

The third games was held just over a year later, in September 2017, in Toronto, Canada, and was the setting for Prince Harry and his then-girlfriend Meghan's first public appearance together as a couple.

In 2018, Sydney, Australia, hosted the competition. The fifth games was due to be held in The Hague in the Netherlands in 2020, was postponed to May 2021, finally going ahead in April 2022.

The location for the sixth Invictus Games will be Dusseldorf, Germany.

Which nations participate?

Thirteen countries participated in 2014, and 20 countries competed in The Hague.

South Korea is the most recent nation to join the Invictus Games Foundation and will appear in next year's competition.

The full list of competing countries:

  • Afghanistan
  • Australia
  • Belgium
  • Canada
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • France
  • Georgia
  • Germany
  • Iraq
  • Italy
  • Jordan
  • Netherlands
  • New Zealand
  • Poland
  • Romania
  • South Korea
  • Ukraine
  • United Kingdom
  • United States
The third edition of the competition was held in Canada (Picture: US Department of Defense).

What sports can participants compete in?

Veterans and wounded, injured or sick serving personnel can take part in 10 events at the Invictus Games.

The sports are:

  • Archery
  • Athletics
  • Indoor rowing
  • Jaguar Land Rover driving challenge
  • Powerlifting
  • Road cycling
  • Sitting volleyball
  • Swimming
  • Wheelchair basketball
  • Wheelchair rugby

Who is eligible to be part of Team UK at the Invictus Games?

The Invictus Games eligibility criteria laid out by the Invictus Games Foundation says that the games is "an international sporting event for wounded, injured and sick servicemen and women, both serving and veterans".

It continues: "It is the responsibility of each participating nation to select their nation's competitors to take part in the games. The selection must be made from servicemen and servicewomen including veterans who have been wounded, injured, or fallen ill during, or as a consequence of service, and who have been deemed to benefit the most from participating in the games as part of their recovery." 

Veterans

To apply, veterans need to complete the Veteran's Eligibility Form ahead of attending their first Invictus Games training camp.

They will need to attach documentation that can confirm both proof of service and their injury or condition, such as a medical discharge letter or a letter from a medical professional stating the condition or injury, and that was caused during or as a result of service.

Serving Personnel

To apply, serving personnel need to complete the Serving Eligibility Form ahead of attending their first Invictus Games training camp.

Table A of the form will need to be completed by the applicant. The document will then need to be passed on to those in their Chain of Command who are involved in the applicant's recovery pathway. They should complete the remainder of the form and include a verified unit stamp.