Vikings Wheelchair Basketball
I have been involved in wheelchair basketball since the age of 14, approximately 19 years and during that time Vikings have been an extension of my family. I have enjoyed many benefits from being part of this club, from the physical exercise and competition to the social experience and support of great friends.
We all go through difficult times and knowing that I have an extended family at Vikings helps in many ways. They are there for advice, a shoulder or just to have a laugh so it's not all about basketball but what it does for me and so many off the court too.
A major benefit for me has been the opportunity to play sport alongside my able-bodied brother John. Obviously being a wheelchair user, playing football or rugby was never an option for me but the inclusion of able-bodied people in wheelchair basketball allows my brother and I to enjoy the experience of playing sport together. Also my niece and nephew started to train with us in the development session that we run on Thursday nights. It’s great to see how much they enjoy themselves, especially doing something that I love so much.
Being a part of Vikings has also given me many opportunities to travel, both in the league and also as a result of our close links with other teams up and down the country which has seen us taking part in exhibition days, friendly matches and tournaments in places like Newcastle, Belfast and the home of the Paralympics, Stoke Mandeville.
I was part of the team that gained promotion to the first division this season at the championship finals in June at Worcester. It was fantastic, the atmosphere and teams competing against us was strong.
As well as training, fitness, competing and social opportunities Vikings has given me a chance to pass on my knowledge through coaching which I enjoy. It certainly gives a different perspective than actually playing and can be more frustrating at times too but I do enjoy it!
I am proud to be the Chairperson of such a successful, friendly club and with the help of volunteers and fundraising we can continue to excellent work.
To put it quite simply "I’m proud to be a Viking."
My Brother John