Name:   Kingsley Ijomah
D.O.B:   01 - 10 - 1982
Nationality:   Nigeria 🇳🇬
Lives:   Berkshire, England
Current Club:   Marlow Rowing Club

The first time I got into a boat did not feel like a first time at all, it felt familiar, as though I had done it a million times in my past life, the feeling was incredible, the rush! I can still feel it as though it were just a second ago, the freedom, it was like discovering a way to take a step on water - Kingsley Ijomah

Kingsley Ijomah, The Journey From Lagos to Tokyo Paralympics 2020

Kingsley was born in Nigeria in 1982 and was educated in King's College Lagos until when he was 14 years old, then he moved with his family to England, where he studied software engineering and discovered a passion for sports along the way.

As a baby of only 9 months old, Kingsley became ill and was diagnosed with Polio, causing paralysis on both legs. Kingsley was determined to walk, and would spend hours everyday practicing until he finally achieved his goal of first standing un-aided and then walking with callipers and later with a pair of crutches, he believes anything is possible with the right attitude and determination.

Kingsley has never let his disability stop him, he would join his friends when they play football, he would be the goalkeeper, he was inspired by the movie "forest gump" a story about a boy disabled just like him who also walked with the aid of callipers, but never let that stop him, Kingsley is truly an inspiration to anyone who knows his story.

2014 Kingsley discovered rowing, he describes the first time he got into a boat as a "magical moment" when everything all made sense, Kingsley has dedicated every time possible to this sport and has seen success in local regattas as well as a gold medal in Home International Regatta where he represented England.

In 2018 he competed with the world's best rowers in the famous World Championships where he came 12th in the world, he also competed in Boston's Head of Charles Regatta with great success in a double.

Kingsley now has his eyes set on the 2020 Paralympics in Tokyo, every effort he puts into training now is fully tailored to get him to Tokyo, it is not an easy challenge, it requires a lot of work and dedication, but Kingsley is ready and already putting in the work that is required.

When we think of Nigeria, we don't think "rowing" this is a chance to make history, Kingsley is training to represent his country of birth NGR in the 2020 Paralympics.

Kingsley's achievements to date have been whilst he was working fulltime as a software engineer, making it impossible to fully commit the necessary time required for training, with your help, Kingsley could re-write the history by being the first Paralympian rower in the whole of Africa to win a medal.

Upcoming Internatinal Events 2019 - 2020

February 2019 African FISA Para-Rowing Camp Tunis, Tunisia
May 2020 Final Paralympic Qualification Regatta Gavirate, Italy
June 2019 World Rowing Cup 2 Poznan, Poland
July 2019 World Rowing Cup 3 Rotterdam, Netherlands
August 2019 World Rowing Championships Linz-Ottensheim, Austria
October 2019 African Continental Qualification Regatta TBC
April 2020 World Rowing Cup 2 Varese, Italy
August 2020 Paralympic Games Rowing Regatta Tokyo, Japan

© 2020 Kingsley Ijomah