I recently started a fund-raising campaign to try and raise enough founds for a new cycling leg. The page can be found here: Fundraising Page
So the question is: why?
The answer is simple. The leg I have now was built several years ago. In that time, the shape of my stump (residual leg) has changed, and technology has moved on quite a bit. In a sport where not just seconds, but tenths of a second can make a difference, it's important not to give away even the slightest edge to the opposition if you want to win.
You want to see why 1/10th of a second can make a difference? Have a watch:
The main issue for me is fit and comfort. The leg I have isn't a perfect fit any more. And it compromises my ability to train. Cycling is a sport where you need to spend hour after hour, day after day on the bike. If you can't do that because you're in constant pain, then your training will suffer. I'm finding the amount of hours I can put in, plus the number of consecutive days I can train is becoming compromised. The leg rubs, it pinches, it causes blisters, phantom nerve pain, lumps, etc. It's hard enough trying to get through the hard training days without having to deal with the extra pain of a poorly-fitting prosthetic!
The second issue is technology and aerodynamics. In the last few years, big leaps have been made by the prosthetic manufacturers. Legs are getting lighter and more attention is being paid to the aerodynamic aspects. Minimising drag is a much bigger deal now - and new legs can save valuable energy and time in races against the clock.
I need to reach target of £8000 to be able to get a new cycling leg. I'm lucky that I have one significant donor coming on board already to put in a chunk of this. But the rest I have to find elsewhere. I simply don't have it myself, so I'm appealing to the general public.
It's the chance for you to be a part of something special, something different. You can donate ANY amount - and when the leg is made - follow my success and know you played a part in it. See me compete in the Rio 2016 Games, stand on the podium and feel pride in knowing you made it happen.
So once again, if you want to donate ANYTHING, please visit my FUNDRAISING PAGE or contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. And thanks for looking!