Fun run his next challenge
A fall left Ben Jenkins with a severe spinal injury but soon he’ll put that aside to compete in the third annual Lugton’s Round the Bridges fun run.
The 12-year-old from Cambridge will be among 5500 runners and walkers expected to take part in the Hamilton event on November 19.
Participants will choose between a 2km, 6km or 12km option and while most will run for fun, Ben had set some personal goals to achieve.
Ben’s spinal injury came after an 8-metre fall from a tree, which nearly left him paralysed. The injury damaged the right side of his body and he now walks with a limp.
He had to relearn every movement but with training he’s quickly made progress.
Earlier this year he competed at the Halberg Games and was looking forward to this weekend’s challenge. Ben remained confident he would achieve a good time but was worried about the weather.
‘‘If it’s too hot I expect it will be a struggle as I don’t cope with the heat.’’
He explained as a result of his accident, his body no longer regulated heat as well as an ablebodied person could. His leg was in a plaster cast which would be removed before his 6km run.
Although limiting his preparation, it hasn’t stopped him from training.
Ben had been under the guidance of a personal trainer, David Robson from Fit Futures, an organisation set up to provide personal training options for people with physical disabilities.
‘‘We have been working on increasing Ben’s strength in order to balance both sides of his body,’’ said Robson.
The course for the Round the Bridges starts in Victoria St between the Fairfield and Claudelands bridges.
Showing the grit needed in training, Ben Jenkins is helped by Fit Futures Charitable Trust trainer David Robson.