By Emily Goddard

Danielle Brown has slammed the IPC and World Archery's classfication changes ©Getty ImagesApril 20 - Danielle Brown, the British archer who won Paralympic gold medals at Beijing 2008 and London 2012, has hit back at changes in classification that mean she is now unable to defend her title at Rio 2016.

The 26-year-old, who has complex regional pain syndrome in her feet, was informed she was no longer eligible for Para-sport events following a classification test at the World Championships in November last year and, despite launching an appeal, World Archery upheld the decision after a re-test earlier this year.

Brown uses both crutches and a wheelchair to get around and even though she competes on a stool the sport's world governing body said her disability is not severe enough to allow her to compete under the revised classification system, which came into effect at the beginning of this month.

"The classifiers weren't particularly understanding about my condition," she told BBC Sport.

"They were pulling and pushing my feet around to the point I was in so much pain I could walk, eat or sleep for two days afterwards.

"They thought I might be making it up.

"I was keeping track of the points, they were writing them down and I got more than enough to pass.

"A week later they said they'd seen me walking on YouTube videos so I was no longer eligible."

Danielle Brown claims the classification changes target athletes with "invisible disabilities" ©Getty ImagesDanielle Brown claims the classification changes target athletes with "invisible disabilities" ©Getty Images

The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) and World Archery have defended their approach and insisted they followed the rules, however Brown believes that in changing the classification system they are targeting athletes with "invisible disabilities", which she warns could have significant implications.

"Unfortunately, invisible disabilities are the ones they seem to be targeting," she said.

"It wasn't until I went to Beijing [2008] that I actually came to terms with having a disability.

"Seeing the most amazing and inspirational people achieving such great things in spite of their disabilities.

"It made me think, 'What have I got to worry about?'

"It made me accept myself for who I was and who I wanted to be.

"These rules are going to limit the amount of people who get those opportunities.

"It's such a shame.

"As soon as money is seen to be poured into the sport, the Paralympic values of inclusion and equality are out of the window."

Brown also won gold at the Delhi 2010 Commonwealth Games against able-bodied competitors, but her compound bow event is not part of the programme for this summer's Games in Glasgow.

She is now focussing on launching a career in psychological mentoring for sport.

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February 2014: Paralympic champion Brown "heartbroken" after ruled out of Rio 2016
December 2013: Double archery champion Brown to appeal against Paralympic exclusion
November 2013: World Archery launch appeals process after competitors ruled out of Paralympics by classification changes
November 2013: British archer unable to defend Paralympic title at Rio 2016 after classification change