Jordan sets ‘Rowing Dangerously’ world record

Published: October 16 2019
Last updated: September 27 2022

A new world record has been set by former soldier and extreme adventurer Jordan Wylie. An Epilepsy Action ambassador, Jordan has epilepsy. He took on the challenge of rowing unarmed and unsupported across the Bab-el-Mandeb Strait on 4 October. It is one of the most dangerous water passages in the world and is also known as the Gate of Tears.

It took Jordan 13 hours and 42 minutes to complete the gruelling ‘Rowing Dangerously’ challenge. The journey from Djibouti to Yemen was made harder by the heat – a scorching 38 ° C.

Jordan, 36, is raising money for Epilepsy Action as part of the challenge, along with two other causes close to his heart – Seafarers UK and Frontline Children.

He is no stranger to danger, having served in the British military for over 10 years. This included service in Iraq and Northern Ireland as a frontline soldier as well as also working in maritime security.

Jordan however faced a whole new challenge in 2017 when he had his first seizure in Monaco and was diagnosed soon after with epilepsy.

He said: “Since being diagnosed, I have been told many times by people, including medical staff, what I can’t do because of my condition. This has only fuelled my desire and passion to keep pushing the boundaries of physical and psychological endurance. I want to show others with epilepsy that we should continue to fulfil our goals and ambitions in life, whatever they may be.

“I appreciate everyone’s experience of epilepsy is very different and some people have real tough limitations. However, I also believe that many people are led to believe that epilepsy is a negative condition which should stop them living a fulfilled and rewarding life.”

He continued: “I believe that we can use adversity to overcome our greatest challenges. I will continue to show the world that we are often only limited by our own imagination.

“To complete a world first row across the most dangerous strait of water on the planet is a huge personal achievement for me. I also think it’s important we continue to raise awareness and funds for Epilepsy Action and the great work they do. As someone with epilepsy, I want to educate and inspire people with this complex neurological condition.”

Jordan will be hosting a charity ball on 7 November, where he will be fundraising for his three chosen charities. He will also be launching his new book ‘Running For My Life’ on the same day.

To find out more about Jordan and his work, visit