Tim Howard Overcame Tourette Syndrome to Become Record Breaking World Cup Goalie
Tim Howard was far from a household name until Tuesday. Throughout the USA’s World Cup loss to Belgium, Howard stood out for his acrobatic leaps and his record-breaking number of dramatic saves.
But, Howard’s history is more complicated, with its share of highs and lows that only make his incredible performance yesterday more inspiring. Tim Howard has never been on a straight-line path towards greatness, but has been a constant roller coaster of hard work and overcoming obstacles that could have easily derailed many other athlete’s careers.
The Washington Post published a profile on Howard in the wake of the US World Cup loss, and one of the most fascinating aspects of his story is Tim Howard’s lifelong struggle with Tourette syndrome, a widely misunderstood mental illness that expresses itself through compulsive behaviors and tics.
The story on his career and amazing performance yesterday highlights how a mental illness can be overcome and even serve as fuel towards something greater. Soccer may not stay at the top of America’s favorite sports now that we are out of the tournament, but Tim Howard’s name will likely not be forgotten soon.