Brig Newspaper

International call-up for Stirling swimming starlet

Megan Short, a mathematics and finance student at Stirling, has been selected to represent her country at the upcoming Cerebral Palsy World Games.

Short, a talented CP/S7 (cerebral palsy, disability classification seven) swimmer, has won more than 100 medals nationally, winning double gold at the Nottingham World Games in 2015.

Short on the left, pictured with fellow medallist Samm Lewis. Credit: Megan Short

In August this year, she will be representing England at the Cerebral Palsy World Games 2018 in Sant Cugat, Barcelona. The event will include athletics (including RaceRunning), para-taekwondo, swimming, and wheelchair slalom.

At The University of Stirling, we have an incredibly talented team of swimmers and para-swimmers, including the Rio Olympics Team GB swimmers Duncan Scott and Ross Murdoch, Deaflympics champion Danielle Joyce and Jill Hendry, one of the United Kingdom’s top blind swimmers. Add to that list Short, a national gold medalist, who will now go on to compete internationally.

Short is a determined young athlete, who found a niche in swimming. Speaking to Brig: “My sporting goals have always been to get as far as I can up the ladder”.

She chose the University of Stirling for its friendly environment and atmosphere, going on to say that her studies are still her top priority alongside her sporting achievements.

Short with a medal at the Nottingham World Games. Credit: Megan Short

On her Crowdfunder page, she writes: “I have been swimming as a para athlete, at a national level since I was 10 years old… In the past few years I have made my biggest achievement to date, setting two British records in 100m butterfly and 200m butterfly for the S7 classification.”

S7 is a classification meaning physically impaired swimmer – S indicating the sport (swimming), including freestyle, backstroke, and butterfly, and 7 indicating the gradient of disability on a scale of one to ten, with one being most severe, and ten being least severe.

Short’s classification includes CP and S7, indicating quite a high level of physical ability with her cerebral palsy, which means she is able to use her arms and trunk well. Other levels of this classification includes amputees.

Life with cerebral palsy has been the only one she has known, being diagnosed at eight months, so she considers her achievements a bonus. The classification system has enabled her to compete with persons of equal abilities, and achieve something extraordinary within her range of ability.

The England team. Credit: Megan Short

The Cerebral Palsy World Games are not sensationalised events, but the athletes should be recognised for their equal level of achievement and relevance as regular sportsmen. The Games allow persons with an otherwise debilitating condition to participate in competitions tailored to their abilities.

The Games are sponsored, but athletes are required to pay a price to participate – a price which is not at all measly. You can donate to support Megan on Crowdfunder here.