At the age of 2, Ellie Cole was diagnosed with cancer which led to the amputation of her leg, as part of her rehabilitation doctors recommended she started swimming lessons but warned that it would take at least a year for her to swim in a straight line. But it took this natural born swimmer just two weeks.
The 24-year-old had a promising start as a Paralympic swimmer competing in both the Beijing and London Paralympics where brought home not one but four gold medals in the 100m backstroke and freestyle and the 4x100m freestyle and medley relays.
This was before a double shoulder op put the brakes on laps. Cole came back strong to the 2015 International Paralympic Committee Swimming World Champs in Glasgow happened and raked in an incredible five medals and two world records.
“It doesn’t matter how much training you’ve done, if you go into a race doubting yourself you’re going to race like shit. The mental is twice as important as the physical.”
“When you’re chasing someone you’re thinking about how they’re going to swim. But when you’re being chased you only care about what you’re going to do.”
“I used to hate to identify as an athlete, but I’m coming around to it. I am an athlete.”