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I was born into a family of keen walkers so at every opportunity I was taken for walks in the countryside even completing 18 miles on the Isle of Skye and climbing Snowdon. My condition was not identified so the emphasis was not to accept my condition. I started cycling at the age of 12. It was natural for me to adopt this form of transport and extend my normal day’s ride to about 70 miles. The freedom and normality cycling offered was wonderful. I joined the local YHA group and few fit cyclists could catch up with me in a sprint. I climbed Ben Nevis in my early twenties. The problems I had were identified by my observers rather than myself. I had had an achilles tendon lengthening operation at 13 and toe release more recently to prevent them curling up.
It was not until a few years after my son was born that our condition was identified but I retained my outdoor activities and even though walking has become more difficult have recently taken up canoeing. I would like to open discussion as to whether intense exercise offsets this condition. In the extreme for instance, what would be the effect on an unidentified sufferer who started to take ballet lessons at the age of five? Canoeing, cycling and swimming are pursuits that I have followed, resulting in a level of fitness well above average for my age.
LB and CS enjoying the shops together with the help of Shopmobility
I met C at the AGM last year and seeing as she lives near me I contacted her for a day out in March this year. I decided to reserve two scooters at shopmobilty in the White Rose shopping centre in Leeds.
The start of our day was disastrous when I fell into C in the car park knocking us both flying. I was also told the incorrect entrance (White Rose has several) meaning we had quite a walk to shopmobility to collect the scooters. C was a little apprehensive sitting in a scooter for the first time but I felt confident that she'd find it liberating after the initial shock - as I did when I used a scooter for the 1st time at a mobility road show last year. After shopping separately for an hour we joined up for a coffee and spent the last hour zooming around from shop to shop - smiles all round. I recall that C described it as "fantastic" realising that she wouldn't have visited as many shops if it wasn't for the freedom a scooter brings. She's even thinking of buying one in the future.