Lee Byrne, once described as one of the greatest full backs ever to play for Wales, experienced many challenges on the rugby pitch in over a decade playing the game.
But off the field, the 35-year-old has been dealing with a much more personal challenge in the form of dyslexia.
Now, the former British and Irish Lion has spoken out for the first time about how the learning difficulty has shaped his life and career.
Lee says he found learning at school incredibly difficult, before leaving at 15. Having decided he must be "a stupid kid," Byrne says playing rugby proved to be his saviour.
Lee explains that as a player, he struggled to learn the game moves and to pass concussion memory tests. Wanting to hide his reading and writing problems from coaches and players, it wasn't until his thirties when he was at French club Clermont Auvergne and was expected to learn the language, that things came to a head.
Finally, after being urged by his wife and ITV Wales presenter Andrea Byrne to undertake a dyslexia test, he was at last given some answers.
Lee found that despite some complications that dyslexia brought, there were aspects of the condition which actually helped him on the rugby pitch.
Now retired from playing, Lee is plotting his future path. In the meantime, he's touring schools, encouraging children not to hide their learning difficulties and inspiring them with his story of possibility.
For more on Lee' story, watch Wales This Week: Dyslexia and Me. Tonight, 8pm on ITV Cymru Wales.