Written by Jim Roberts
Edited by Genevieve Gordon
With the Olympics getting closer by the day Jim Roberts blogs about his joy of the competition and his realisation that he is a Paralympic athlete representing #ParalympicsGB.
The Olympics have started! For me it’s been the ultimate realisation of just how soon the Paralympics are. I’ve always enjoyed the Olympic Games but this time, for me it’s different. This time I get to have my shot! Seeing the enormous joy on people’s faces when they get a medal put around their neck is incredibly inspirational.
Hazel Irvine at the opening ceremony said:” We need sport to remind us how brilliant we can be. And how joyous it can be to share something with the rest of the world.”
And that’s what the Olympics do, they bring together the world.
I was lucky enough to travel to Rio in February for the wheelchair rugby test event, honestly I wasn’t sure they were going to be ready in time, there seemed to be a lot of work to do. There always seems to be a lot of negative press in the lead up to big sporting events but just as London did Rio is putting on one hell of a show.
As well as being an athlete I am a huge sports fan. I love the Olympics! Coming from a rugby background I’m immediately drawn to the newcomer sport Rugby 7’s. I think it’s been absolutely brilliant, great displays of athleticism and fitness and some absolutely nail biting games. Fiji were without doubt operating on a different level in the final. I felt for GB but Fiji once again proved themselves the dominant force in 7’s rugby. But there’s so much sport, when I haven’t been training I’ve been surfing between the sports on the BBC red button. I find myself equally as enthralled in sports I don’t fully understand. Sailing for example, I still don’t fully understand how people are able to sail in to the wind. But regardless of my understanding of the mechanics there has been some amazing battles and tight finishes. In fact in all the sports I’ve been lucky enough to watch there has been brilliant drama and amazing competition.
I head to our penultimate GB wheelchair rugby camp next week. I’m hugely excited about it and can’t wait to be back working with the team towards our goal. This stage of our training is the final touches to all the work we’ve put in so far. But a tiny bit of me is gutted that I won’t be able to catch all that is going on at the Olympics.
That feeling of national pride that made me want to pursue a career in sport is definitely back and I can’t wait to get my chance in a few weeks time.
A Jump to the Present explains Jim’s pathway to the Paralympics.