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UK Coaching Team
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Safety and Welfare Supporting Specific Needs Disability

Success ‘Storey’! How GB Paralympians, GB Cycling and Great British Coaches are Transforming Lives

During the Tokyo Paralympics, UK Coaching has attended a series of ‘Inspiring Communities’ events organised by UK Sport in partnership with The National Lottery and British Paralympic Association, designed to showcase the inspirational effects our Paralympians are having on sport participation, and beyond – and the vital role that great coaching plays in this virtuous cycle

We were at British Cycling’s Tameside Disability Hub in Manchester – the home city of Dame Sarah Storey – on the morning she won her 15th Paralympics gold medal.

We were afforded an enlightening glimpse into how the Paralympics is inspiring our communities, and how great coaches and great support from British Cycling is helping to transform lives.

Six-times Special Olympics World Games gold medallist Kiera Byland BEM coaches at Tameside Disability Hub in Ashton-under-Lyne and at Mossley Cycle Racing Team, an inclusive club that caters for para-cyclists by running an integrated club training session at the Tameside circuit.

Kiera – who has autism and dyspraxia – says that her experience of inclusive coaching during her development to becoming an elite athlete made her “feel wanted” and “cared about” and she wanted to give something back by embarking on a career in coaching.

I love inspiring others and if I can make a difference in one person’s life then that’s success for me.”

She discusses coaching’s instrumental role in her cycle of success, the importance of inclusion and what makes a great inclusive coach.

We also chatted to British Cycling CEO Brian Facer about building on the Paralympics legacy. He is passionate about supporting disabled people by making cycling facilities and coaching inclusive so that everyone can get involved.

“The impact of our Paralympians and watching cyclists like Sarah should be massive, inspiring people to get back on their bike after the pandemic and enjoying the cycling community and the inclusive nature of what cycling can bring to people.

“British cycling can capitalise on this by making the ten disability hubs we have around the country open and accessible for people to come in, and the world class coaching that we can bring to people as well. The coach’s role is really important in bringing people to cycling and keeping them involved, making sure that they cycle with confidence and in a safe environment as well.”

In the video you will see Kiera’s dad, Brian, piloting Tameside club member Ricky Ashworth on a tandem.

A former speedway national champion, Ricky sustained brain damage after an on-track accident and was in a coma for three months. He was desperate to get back on a bike and the Tameside Disability Hub made that wish come true.

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UK Coaching Team