FOX SPORTS

Swimming star has no legs, one arm

FOX Sports LARRY BROWN SPORTS
Share This Story

   
 

Kayla Wheeler is proving that no disability should stand in someone’s way.

Wheeler is a 16-year-old swimming phenomenon despite being born without legs and one arm. The junior at Mountlake Terrace (Wash.) High School is a Paralympic world record holder in the 50 meter butterfly and has competed around the world. She even qualified for the 2012 London Paralympic Games, but she did not go because there was not enough competition, KCPQ reports.

“I didn’t get to make the team because there were no female events for my classification, which is an S1. That’s the most disabled you could be and still swim,” Kayla told KCPQ.

Wheeler got started with swimming at an early age after a doctor recommended lessons as a form of therapy. She hasn’t stopped since.

“Just when you think she can`t do any better, she does it again,” her mother, Joyce Wheeler, told KCPQ.

Wheeler is gearing up for a competition at the International Paralympic World Championships in Montreal this August.

In addition to her swimming prowess, Wheeler also excels in school.

According to KCPQ, Wheeler is on her school’s robotics team, takes advanced classes at a local community college, and was named a Scholastic All-American.

Wheeler is no stranger to media coverage. In 2010, KCPQ did a story on the young lady when she was in eighth grade (video below). Wheeler explained in that interview why swimming is so great for her.

“It makes me feel free because I don’t necessarily have all the limitations that I do out of the water,” Wheeler said at the time. “I can do flips in the water. I can do cartwheels in the water. Things that kind of defy gravity.”

The video also showed her participating in bowling, ballet, and baseball. She even was taking ski lessons, and called skiing the “most awesome sport ever, except for swimming.”

Wheeler’s overall attitude is an inspiration to all of us.

“I don’t really try to feel sad about my life kind of thing. I just try to find other ways to make it better than it already is.”

For more from Larry Brown Sports, click here .

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by


FOX SPORTS Videos

Garcia angry at Pepe-Keita incident Posted: Jul 30, 2014
Roma head coach Rudi Garcia believes Real Madrid defender Pepe behaved poorly as...

Could Durant Follow LeBron Home? - @TheBuzzeronFOX Posted: Jul 30, 2014
Kevin Durant hears the DC talk. But could he be part of a new big 3 in his homet...

Allegri confident of keeping Vidal Posted: Jul 30, 2014
Despite reportedly agreeing to join Manchester United, it looks like Juventus st...