Photo: Badminton Europe / Mark Phelan
Jack Wilson: I was the only one
Date: 6/13/2020 7:01 AM
Published by : Emilie Sommer (BEC)

Jack Wilson, 25, competes in the Standing Upper 5 sport class in Para badminton and is the highest ranked para player in Wales.

It can be hard to grow up not being like the rest of the kids, but this was not what Wilson experienced when he was younger. 

- I grew up in a quiet village instead of a city. I was the only one with my type of disability. Although I never really struggled to make friends or participate in sports either. All my friends, parents and teachers were supportive, so I guess I never really noticed it growing up. 

For some sport can be a chance to forget about the everyday problems and situation and just focus on playing. This is the case for the Welsh player. 

- Badminton provides me with a chance to escape from reality on a regular basis. It has also given me the chance to learn about myself mentally and meet people that I otherwise wouldn't have got the chance to meet. 

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Chasing the dreams 

Wilson began to play badminton at an early age. Now he is 25 and has already experienced a lot of things. 

- Being older I have become more independent and moved to Cardiff which has been an amazing opportunity to live in the city, train with the Badminton Wales set up and have opportunity to chase my dreams in Para badminton. 

What impact does badminton have in Wilson’s life?

- Para badminton has given me the opportunity to compete for Wales, travel the world, meet new people, gain new experience and work hard on and off court. It has also provided me with a number of challenges with a work life balance and limited me to some extents but is still all worth it. 

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What the future will bring

When the days comes where players decide to stop their professional career, some chose to stay in the sport and go the coaching way. Commenting on whether Wilson will stay active in the sport afterwards, he says. 

- I have a few options as I may continue in another para sport, I may delve into Para badminton coaching as I do have coaching certificates or may do something different. I've never really thought about it in depth as I am very much looking to progress in the sport and not one to look that far ahead. 

Lastly, asking what advice he would give to people considering playing Para badminton, he says. 

- Just try the sport, I tried the sport randomly and fell in love with it that I went every week for 2 years straight. It's a great sport to get active and meet new people and make friends.

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