Aaron ‘Wheelz’ Fotheringham
When spina bifida confined Aaron Fotheringham to a wheelchair, he didn’t take it as much of a setback. He just started doing tricks in it, and thereby created his own sport. Nice.
It began when, age 8, he was watching his brother in a skate park. His brother encouraged him to drop in to the ramp on his wheelchair, and after a few crashes, he got it. From then, Aaron has been making it up as he goes along. Age 14, he became the first person to do to a backflip in a wheelchair; he got the double-backflip at 18.
Aaron has sustained a few injuries over the years, and first practices his tricks his tricks in a foam pit, then a ‘resi’ – a rigid plastic sheet over a foam pit – before trying them for real. Still, as you can see from his double-backflip attempts, he’s no scaredy cat!
And if you’ve ever sat drunkenly in a shopping trolley (don’t be shy, we all have) you will understand why this mega-ramp to backflip scenario could be a daunting prospect for an average Joe:
Like Philippe Croizon, the quadriplegic swimmer, Aaron Fotheringham accepts no limits. His wheelchair is his chariot. And that’s amazing.