Ian Thwaites launched Level Water two years as a charity to teach children with disabilities to swim. Disabled children are one-third as likely to play sport as their friends, which leads to isolation and exclusion.
“The activity children with disabilities want to do most is swim, so we find those disabled kids who aren’t playing sport and teach them to swim,” says Thwaites. “We then help them move to mainstream group lessons and eventually to train and race.”
Last year, Thwaites faced disability himself after a bike crash left him with four broken vertebrae and four weeks of concussion. He didn’t do any sport for a year and during his recovery from the accident thought a lot about the difficulties and the day-to-day challenges faced by children with disabilities. As a result, he has now resolved to get fit again and take on the biggest sporting challenge he could find to raise funds for Level Water.
He decided to tackle Brutal Events’ Extreme Double Ironman, an event that no one has finished in under 30 hours. It consists of a five mile swim, 230 mile bike ride and 52 miles of running including an ascent of Snowden, the highest mountain in Wales.
He’s given himself four months to train. He’s never done an Ironman or a marathon before and suspects he’s never swum more than 1500m in one go. Wish him luck and support him through JustGiving at:www.justgiving.com/back-to-front/