Lizzie Williams: Sporting Success
- Posted on Mar 22, 2018
Last year was an incredible year – the best one yet you might say!
I had the great pleasure of working with Channel 4 again to film a brand new ident [a short advert] which shows numerous times each day a handful of us wheelchair racers racing in formation with me leading the pack along the docks in Liverpool. On the track I had a very successful season, smashing my PBs, and moving up the UK rankings massively to 3rd (200m/800m), 4th (400m/1500m) and 5th (100m my weakest event). As a result of this I was selected for the British Athletics Parallel Success development academy 2017/2018 which is a great milestone to hit as they recognise my progression and potential.
Coming into 2018, although I did start this year off with an Umbilical Hernia (of all things) which I’ve now 90% recovered from, I’ve had a lot of new and exciting things happening off the track. I’ve started a Schools Tour where I give motivational talks, run activities and workshops to children as young as 4 and right up to high school. During my talks I also explain my Brittle Bones as being disabled is the most obvious things about me when they first meet me. I use the story of the three little pigs to explain OI and how my bones are different to most able bodied peoples’ bones, and that’s had a really positive response so far! I really wanted to find a childproof way to talk about my OI when going to junior and primary schools, so I was quite impressed with myself once I had come up with this. They can recognise that their bones are as strong as the brick house and can take a lot of impact, however someone with OI like me has bones more like the straw house and often can’t take much or any impact at all!
Public speaking is something that I’m really pushing this year, and so I’ve also created a YouTube channel to share important and relevant conversations. There’s been a lot of great work by major organisations and companies to increase the representation of disabled people, so I think it’s really great to keep pushing that through communication and discussions.
I also got involved with an opportunity from TEDx where I recently entered their OPENx programme. I made it down to the final 22 people and will be able to benefit from numerous workshops on how to structure a TEDx style talk to give me a better chance to practice presentation and public speaking skills. They see a lot of potential in me so are keen to work with me to build on my ideas and my story.
So it looks like it will be another exciting year ahead! Here’s to better representation, greater awareness, and spreading positivity around the globe.