Torchbearer for the London 2012 Paralympic Games, winner of 2 Paralympic, 5 World Championship and 9 European Championship Medals, Ian is one of Great Britain’s most successful Paralympic Judoka.
- High Wycombe
- Date Of Birth:
Retiring in 2011, Ian was on course to represent ParalympicsGB at his 6th Games in London, but due to an injury in training Ian called it a day, bringing to an end an International career spanning 22 years at the top. Ian now focusses on motivating and inspiring others to achieve their full potential both on and off the mat. ABOUT IAN After being born with childhood eye cancer (Retinablastoma) Ian lost his left eye and most of the sight in his right. Following many operations Ian was left with an indent on the right side of his face and having to wear thick glasses. At the age of seven Ian’s parents realised that he needed help to improve his self-esteem, as Ian was coming home from school some afternoons in tears after being teased about the way he looked. Little did they know how much their next step would impact on his life. Ian was introduced to the sport of Judo and two coaches (Ron Cleere and John Oke), who accepted him into Micklefield Judo Club and treated him exactly the same as the other members. From that point on the sport of Judo became a big part of Ian’s life and within three months the teasing he received about his looks stopped, due to a new confidence and self belief. Ian was not a natural at Judo taking two years to win his first medal, but worked very hard in training and he had a passion for success. The longer this went on the better Ian got and he received his first International selection in 1989 whilst still in his last year at secondary school. Competing in the European Visually Impaired Championships was a dream come true and the beginning of an international sporting career that would see him travel the world, winning two Paralympic medals, a World Championships and four European Championships. Ian has now competed in five Paralympic Games and recently retired through injury, to concentrate on the next chapter in his life, but couldn’t have achieved any of this without the forward thinking of his parents and coaches and the support of his wife Debbie and two kids Leah and Jordyn. Life is full of opportunity, don’t let them pass by. Some of Ian’s achievements include 2008 - Beijing Paralympics Ninth 2007 - World Championship Bronze 2007 - European Championship Bronze 2006 - World Championship Bronze 2004 - Athens Paralympic Silver 2000 - Sydney Paralympics Fifth 1996 - Atlanta Paralympic Bronze 1995 - World Champion 1992 - Barcelona Paralympics Fifth Four times European Champion TESTIMONALS “Thank you so much for coming to SHILLING’s challenge day and delivering the perfect motivational speech to end our day. Your relaxed way of speaking with just the right blend of humour and participation captivated the team and took us on the journey with you through the highs and (few) lows of your life. The link you made between your career as a sportsman – the development, dedication and lessons learnt – and everyday business really struck a chord with the team and I’ve had many of them come to me and say how much they enjoyed your talk. You’ve also raised the bar for us to step up the way we try and inspire them to success. No pressure then!” Shilling Communication – Director “Thank you so, so, so very much for inspiring us all at Holy Trinity on Tuesday. The children and staff were brimming with enthusiasm and full of praise for how wonderful and inspirational you were. I have had several parents who sought me out to express how much they had enjoyed the assembly and to pass on their huge gratitude to you. So, from HT, a HUGE thank you!” Holy Trinity Primary School – Deputy Head