Basketball Girl: Amputee Qian Hongyan

Qian Hongyan lost both her legs in an accident at only three years old in 2000. Hongyan’s family wasn’t wealth enough to provide her with hi-tech equipment to help her walk, so they gave her a basketball to help her move. Hongyan used brushes as low-level crutches. She was able to travel to and from home and school by bouncing on the basketball. Five years later, doctors were finally been able to give her prosthetic legs.

The seventh national special sports-meeting was held in Kunming in May 2007. Qian Hongyan went to watch the games every day and seeing the handicapped players struggle in the matches deeply moved her. After the sports meeting, Qian Hongyan was determined to join in the special swimming club. She and her parents went to consult the opportunity with Zhang Honghu, a well known coach who has trained many handicapped swimming champions. Then, Qian Hongyan began her life in the swimming club and did professional swimming training.

“Qian Hongyan studies hard. She never grouches in training although she was confronted with many difficulties at the beginning”, her coach said.

At first, Zhang didn’t pay much attention to Qian Hongyan. “The individual’s capability is important in choosing a player”, he said. “Qian Hongyan doesn’t have legs. It seems that a ship has no a helm, then the ship could work well for lack of a sense of direction”. In order to solve the problem, zhang made a special training plan for Qian Hongyan to help balance the shoulders.

Qian Hongyan swims for about 2000 meters in a day. She always does the exercises and sit-ups, dumbbells and so on carefully. After a short period, to Zhang’s surprise, he found that Hongyan was gifted in swimming. Zhang said, “Hongyan is a very good swimmer but it would be boring and take a long time to train her and repeat the exercises every day. I couldn’t ensure she would be a world champion. However, I can tell that she is definitely a promising swimmer. Our biggest wish is to train her to have a positive attitude to life”. Qian Hongyan’s dream is to take part in the 2012 special Olympic Games and become a world champion. She works hard to achieve her dream.