Ricky Ties

Ricky Ties grew up in Rochester Minnesota. He is one of seven siblings, six of them boys. Ricky, like most young boys, was energetic, rough, and in love with all different kinds of sports. Unlike the other kids, he was born with an eye disorder called retinitis pigmentosa. This vision disorder caused tunnel vision, night blindness, and the inability to see small details. Along with some other abnormalities. Because of this disability, even though Ricky did still play many sports, he found that the sport of wrestling was something that his vision did not limit his ability to succeed. Ricky started wrestling in kindergarten, and by the time he was in 8th grade, he had already made the varsity team at Rochester Mayo High School. In his high school career he was a 5 X Letter Winner, 5x Section Medalist, 3x Big 9 All Conference Selection, Two-Time State Qualifier and placed 5th at State. He was selected Rochester-Mayo High School "Winter Male Athlete of the Year," and a National High School Coaches Association (NHSCA) All-American Honors. After graduating in 2001, Ricky attended and wrestled at Rochester Technical & Community College (RCTC) for 2 years where he was a two-time National Qualifier and a Regional Champion. Ricky then transferred to the University of LaCrosse (UW-LaCrosse) where his wrestling career was cut short with multiple injuries, but he did graduate with a degree in Psychology. Although his competition career was over, his coaching career was getting ready to start. Ricky came back to Rochester and became a volunteer wrestling coach at Mayo High School for two years. He then became the Head Assistant Coach at John Marshal High School for three years. Ricky then moved to Illinois and coached at Wheaton College for a year. During this time, Ricky decided that he wanted to start his own program, so he moved back to Rochester and started Inner Drive Wrestling, where over the course of eight years, he was able to work with hundreds of youth and high school wrestlers from Southeast Minnesota. During this same time period, he was coaching at RCTC, and received his Masters Degree in Sport Psychology. In 2014 Ricky while running Inner Drive and coaching at RCTC, Ricky was made aware of Paralympic Judo for the visually impaired. Believing that his competition years were behind him, at age 32 years old, Ricky decided to try and learn a new sport, hoping that his wrestling background would help him accelerate his ability to learn. Ricky quickly worked his way on to t Team USA, winning multiple visually impaired national titles. Ricky has made multiple World teams along with medals at different world cups, grand prixs and at the Pan American Games and Championships. Ricky is currently living at the Olympic training Center in Colorado Springs and training to qualify for the Tokyo Paralympics. What a great example for young athletes to follow their wants and dreams, never giving up even while others might say: "No way, this is not possible" Ricky Ties has achieved way beyond what one might think possible and is now a valued member of the National wrestling Hall of Fame-Minnesota Chapter. Congratulations to Mr. Ricky Ties!


Medal of Courage

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