Training, Exposure, Experience (TEE)

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The National Disabled Veterans TEE (Train, Expose, Experience) Tournament (NDVTEE) is a week-long adaptive golf program that is hosted by the Iowa City Veterans Healthcare System.  This annual event promotes rehabilitation by instructing veterans with visual impairments and other life-changing disabilities in adaptive golf.  In addition to adaptive golf veterans will be introduced to other adaptive recreational sports.

The NDVTEE Tournament leverages VHA’s adaptive sports medicine model with adaptive golf as the focus to health and wellness promotion.  All the activities offered by the NDVTEE Tournament office will give veterans an opportunity to develop new skills, strengthen their self-esteem, and expand fellowship and camaraderie among the participants.  The events provide eligible veterans with an opportunity to participate in therapeutic adaptive sporting, fishing and hunting activities; which demonstrates that having a visual impairment or physical disability is a conquerable obstacle to an active, fulfilling and rewarding life.

NDVTEE success has led to the development of the regional programs for veterans:   

  • The TEE Tournament Swing Clinics is a program for any veteran, regardless of disability, who is serviced by the Iowa City VA Health Care System.  This is a traveling one-day golf program led by PGA golf professionals.
  • The GIVE Program is a program for any veteran, regardless of disability, who is serviced by the VISN 23 region of the Department of Veterans Affairs.  The program provides veterans with 5-session of golf instruction led by PGA golf professionals and an opportunity to receive discounted golf at area golf courses.
  • Veterans Casting Away Disabilities is a week-long fishing program offered to veterans in the VISN 23 region of the Department of Veterans Affairs that suffer from a severe life changing disability.  The fishing program is partnered with DAV State of Iowa Chapters, Eagles Aeries 695 and the Iowa Department of Natural Resources.
  • Disabled Veterans Hunt is a two-day hunting program offered to veterans from the State of Iowa that suffer from a severe life changing disability.  This hunting program is partnered with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources and True Impact Outdoors.

Athlete and volunteer registration for this event will be available soon.

 

2019 Event Schedule
2019 Information Sheet
NDVTEE Tournament Poster

Co-Sponsors:

  • U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)
  • Disabled American Veterans – DAV

Sponsor Guide

Host:
Iowa City VA Health Care System

Events:

This four-day clinic consists of golf and golf instruction as our focus, with opportunities of exposure to other recreational activities to include kayaking, pontoon fishing, horseback riding, horseshoes, disc golf, and adaptive biking as well as other health educational opportunities.

Location:

The clinic will be held in the Iowa City, Iowa area.

 

Eligibility:

Participation is open to male and female military service veterans with qualifying disabilities such as visual impairments, amputations, traumatic brain injuries, psychological trauma, certain neurological conditions, spinal cord injuries and other severe life changing disabilities.  All disabilities are subject to review by the National Disabled Veterans TEE Tournament (NDVTEE) Medical Director and Program Director.

Here are a few examples of common diagnoses that do not usually qualify for the NDVTEE:

  • Low back pain (even if you’ve had surgery)
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Degenerative joint disease/osteoarthritis,
  • Chronic pain
  • Diabetes

Degree of service-connectedness, whether in general or specifically related to an injury, does not influence qualification for the tournament.

What do I need to bring with me to the event?

Participants should bring clothes appropriate for the golf course, a hat, sunscreen, sunglasses, MEDICATION, personal identification and personal equipment (i.e. golf clubs, bowling ball).

For information or to request an application, please contact

NDVTEE Director:

Kirt Sickels
(319) 358-5963

TEE Tournament Program Specialist:

Kimberly Heeren
(319) 358-5962 (office)
(319) 621-0891 (mobile)
601 Hwy 6 West
Iowa City, IA 52246

DAV National Voluntary Services Director:

John Kleindienst
(859) 442-2056

VA Media Lead

Jennifer Dikes
(385) 227-2906

DAV Media Lead

Janice Hagar
(321) 217-8255

 

Eldon Miller has been teeing up at the National Veterans Training, Exposure, and Experience (TEE) Tournament since the program began over 20 years ago.

Miller, an Army Veteran from Kalona, Iowa, was 21 years old in 1974 when he lost his vision after a truckload of ammunition exploded during a training exercise.

“You learn to depend a lot on your hearing,” he said. “There are always different challenges you have to overcome.”

In 1994, Miller was one of 36 Veterans to participate in the inaugural Veterans adaptive golf clinic in Nauvoo, Ill, an event that would eventually evolve into the National Disabled Veterans TEE Tournament.

Today, the program provides adaptive golf instruction and other physical activities for nearly 200 Veterans representing 33 states across the country.

“As a Veteran, you really look forward to these events,” Miller said. “They keep you active and keep you motivated.”

The National Disabled Veterans TEE Tournament is once again hosted by the Iowa City VA Healthcare System where Miller receives his care, including nearly 350 volunteers from the local community.

“Our local VA is so dedicated,” he said. “This is only possible because of them.”

Video Spotlight

Veteran’s Recovery…Using Golf!


When Army Veteran Homer Hudnall, Jr lost his right leg, he thought it was over. But then, Homer discovered the therapeutic value of adaptive sports, and he hasn’t looked back. Homer credits the National Disabled Veterans TEE Tournament with saving his life. Learn more about the TEE Tournament at www.tee.va.gov!

TEE Tournament GIVE Program


TEE Tournament GIVE Program featured on Golf Channel’s Morning Drive

DAV Past National Commander, Dave Riley


Celebrating its 25th Anniversary, the National Disabled Veterans TEE Tournament provides legally blind and eligible disabled Veterans an opportunity to develop new skills through adaptive golf and sporting activities. The TEE Tournament uses a therapeutic format to promote rehabilitation, fellowship and camaraderie among participants. VA strives to show Veterans that having a visual or physical disability need not be an obstacle to an active, rewarding life.