There’s nothing you possibly can’t do – however hearken to your healthcare professionals. That’s the message from para desk tennis ace Simon Heaps on World Diabetes Day.
Former European Cadet champion Heaps has lately had both his legs amputated on account of sort 1 diabetes. He now competes in a wheelchair and is at the moment No 28 within the Class 5 world rankings.
He has received medals at numerous worldwide para tournaments together with (pictured above) in Saudi Arabia in August, the place he received singles and blended doubles bronzes simply days earlier than his 68th birthday.
World Diabetes Day is on November 14 yearly. To seek out out discover extra about it and concerning the situation, visit the Diabetes UK website.
Heaps, who additionally competes on the VETTS circuit, stated: “I’ve been diabetic for about 56 years. It’s one thing I’ve needed to dwell with all my life, so from that viewpoint, nothing’s actually modified from day after day, aside from noticing the enhancements for all diabetics in the present day.
“Now, I put on a sensor on my arm which hyperlinks to my cellphone and I’m satisfied that if I’d had that once I was youthful, I’d have two legs in the present day.
“Clearly, you possibly can’t return, however the therapy in the present day has modified for the higher. The warnings you get about limb loss or eyesight loss are so significantly better. It’s normally the extremities which can be affected.
“If somebody requested would I fairly lose my legs or my eyesight, I’d say my legs all day lengthy. It’s not stopped me doing something – I can drive a hand-controlled automotive and I’m travelling all over the world to play, 9 instances out of 10 on my own.”
Heaps performed arguably the shot of the match on the Mark Bates Ltd Nationwide Championships final season, as seen on this video:
However it isn’t simply competing in desk tennis that has been on his agenda – final yr he did a 12,000ft tandem skydive for charity.
He stated: “The teacher had accomplished 2,300 jumps and I used to be the primary double amputee he’d had. I most likely wouldn’t have accomplished that if I’d had two legs, nevertheless it took me out of my consolation zone and I used to be doing it for charity, so I didn’t wish to allow them to down.
“So, it’s not stopped me doing issues. You’ve acquired to be very cautious along with your food regimen and basic well being and hearken to correct recommendation, however there’s nothing you possibly can’t do – it’s solely whenever you don’t do what you’re advised that there’s an issue.
“That’s the message – should you hearken to your healthcare practitioners, as a result of they know greatest, diabetes shouldn’t hamper you.”
He additionally just lately spoke to the Diabetes Analysis & Wellness Basis about his life and desk tennis profession. Click here to read the article.
Subsequent cease for Heaps on the worldwide scene is the World Abilitysport Games in Thailand subsequent month. The Video games is a biennial multi-sport occasion which goals to offer aspiring athletes their first style of worldwide competitors and older athletes the prospect to proceed competing.