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In January 2019, I met an exceptional young man on a coach education workshop I ran in London.
I asked for a volunteer to help demonstrate some exercises and his exact reply was “I will, I have cerebral palsy but I’ll be fine”
Nick is a level 3 tennis coach, working out of David Lloyd Northwood in London. His approach to life is a breath of fresh air. He has committed himself to making a difference in the disability tennis world.
Listen to this episode and I think you’ll agree, he will achieve what he has set out to do.
Nick has kindly agreed to have his email on the show notes. He will gladly accept emails from anyone who is interested in connecting with him about developing disability tennis. His email is firstname.lastname@example.org
Pass this episode on to anyone you know in this sphere as I would like to connect Nick to as many people as possible.
Thank you for listening
Artwork by http://www.olinightingale.com
Intro/Outro music by http://www.hueandcry.co.uk
Pete butcher says
Amazing to hear your podcast nick,
Kris’s ability to allow you to speak freely and your ability to tell your story is very inspiring, as a colleague and a friend your incredibly dedicated , conscientious and focused in delivering your message,
Kris Soutar says
Thank you for taking the time to comment Pete. You are correct, Nick is inspirational and I felt lucky to hear his story. Just the beginning I suspect.
Phil Barker says
Having heard Nick speak at an online cafe I was so impressed, I thought this guy knows a lot and says it so well, there might be something out there on the web. This was the first podcast I’ve listened to – and so good I’ve listened twice.
As a guy with CP I can identify with much of what Nick said about the overall condition. My experience is of another category, mild diplegia, which affects both my legs although I am ambulant (less so now than I used to be).
People with impairments are indeed excellent problem-solvers – I love solving problems and helping other people find solutions.
My prognosis focused on what the medics thought I wouldn’t be able to do i.e. an inability to play football. I accepted that to some extent but when I was welcomed by 2 groups of fully-ambulant guys in my late 20s/early 30s, such was my nature that I got stuck into proving I could play and I’ll treasure the 15 years I was able to run/jog about and net 133 goals to add to the 1 I scored as a 10-year old in a games-lesson one Thursday afternoon.
The next level for me was leading a team of CP football players, all younger than I was, and some half my age. Their respect was amazing, despite my lack of technique and tactics. I could at least empathise with them and I think they appreciated that.
Since I had to start using crutches for walking (8 years ago) my upper-body has likely been compensating for my lower-body and has become much fitter for swimming- when we’re not in Lockdown. It helps me manage my condition, and I’ve been a winner which is great for mental health. Parents of young children with CP have told me they’ve been inspired by seeing an adult CP swimmer. To then enter the National Championships was something I’d never thought I’d do until I saw it advertised in a CP Sport Newsletter 2 years ago.
Indeed there are days when it’s hard to get motivated to do those stretches. To anyone who thinks that someone else “will struggle”, look at that as a strength, you might be pleasantly surprised at their determination, potential and achievement.
I have been an advocate too: a few years ago I delivered Assemblies to audiences of 11-16 year-old students entitled “Don’t Dis- My Ability”.
It takes two to make a good conversation – thank you Kevin.
Kris Soutar says
I can’t describe how happy this makes me feel reading your comment. Firstly, well done for being such a clear inspiration yourself. You have taken, what many, consider a disadvantage and turned it into a huge advantage. Can I ask 2 things, 1. can you confirm your name please? 2. Are you comfortable with me using your message to further promote Nick’s episode? I can remove your name from it if you wish.