Spin­ners are win­ners

Tour­na­ment pro­vides re­verse in­clu­sion for love of sport

Sunshine Coast Daily - Caloundra Weekly - - NEWS - Carly Cullen [email protected]­news.com.au

BAS­KET­BALL fans can start off 2019 with a spin when the Sun­coast Spin­ners Wheel­chair Bas­ket­ball Tour­na­ment takes place at Caloun­dra In­door Sta­dium.

Sun­coast Spin­ners president Bri­die Kean has been a wheel­chair bas­ket­ball Par­a­lympian, won gold in the premier grade and is part of the club’s re­verse in­clu­sion ini­tia­tive.

Pas­sion­ate about in­creas­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties for peo­ple with dis­abil­i­ties to en­gage in sport and phys­i­cal ac­tiv­ity, Ms Kean be­lieves everyone can have a shot at join­ing in.

“What’s great is that any­one can play,” she said.

“The wheel­chair is sim­ply a piece of sport­ing equip­ment.”

Now she coaches the Spin­ners B-grade teams, pass­ing on her ex­pe­ri­ence and men­tor­ing ju­nior play­ers.

“For me, coach­ing is an amaz­ing ex­pe­ri­ence,” Ms Kean said.

“As a for­mer ath­lete, it’s so ex­cit­ing to be a part of. It re­minds me of the first time I played bas­ket­ball and it re­minds me of why I fell in love with the game.”

The Aura res­i­dent had both feet am­pu­tated at age two af­ter she con­tracted and sur­vived meningo­coc­cal dis­ease.

When Ms Kean was in school she wanted to play sports but her phys­i­cal dis­abil­ity re­duced her abil­ity to par­tic­i­pate in main­stream ac­tiv­i­ties.

She played stand-up bas­ket­ball us­ing pros­thet­ics but found it too painful.

“Wheel­chair bas­ket­ball pro­vided an equal play­ing field,” Ms Kean said.

The event will run from Jan­uary 11–13.

For more in­for­ma­tion, visit www.sun­coast­spin­ners.com.au/2019-tour­na­ment.

PHOTO: CON­TRIBUTED

SHOOT­ING HOOPS: Sun­coast Spin­ners president Bri­die Kean passes on her tips through coach­ing the B-grade teams.

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