Harry's sporting achievements

(Abstract not available)

Smale, L. (2003) Harry's sporting achievements. Down Syndrome News and Update, 3(1), 25-25. doi:10.3104/dsupdate.216

Harry Smale cycling

Harry Smale cycling

We are very pleased to be contributing a feature on Harry. Regarding advice to give to parents, I did baby massage on Harry on a regular basis in his first year. Harry sat up at 6½ months and crawled at 12 months. I used to tease him with his milk bottle to get him moving and he walked at 17 months, then I used to tease him with crisps (terrible mum) but it worked.

Harry Smale on a skiing holiday with friends

Harry on a skiing holiday with friends

He could ride a bike without stabilisers on his 9th birthday. As regards skiing, gymnastics, skateboarding, horse riding, tennis, football etc. we have always encouraged him to try anything. He started skiing when he was 5 years old and has been every year since - it helped in the beginning that Matthew and I could already ski ourselves.

When the boys first started skiing we used reins on them so we could control their speed - it was like driving a horse, we just said turn right or left and pulled the reins a bit on the side they should turn.

Harry Smale performing the splits

Harry performing the splits

Harry started Gymclub when he was 7 years old and is now competing at Level 2 in gymnastics. He competed in the Special Needs Olympics in Cardiff in 2001, and came 7th all round.

Harry Smale on the parallel bars

Harry on the parallel bars

I took Harry to baby swim when he was about 5 months old and he has taken swimming lessons since he was 3 years old. He is a very confident swimmer, loves to swim a lot under the water - he can actually do a whole length (> 25m) under water.

Harry Smale in a swimming pool

Harry in a swimming pool

Harry also loves drama and performed at Stratford upon Avon when he was 7 years old. He was also in a production in Jersey, both times with Kaleidoscope Theatre.

On the last day of term at Grainville School, they held a Pride Award ceremony, where only the pupils were allowed to vote - Harry picked up the award for 'Young Achiever who Pioneered in Inclusive Education', and he was very proud about it.

Harry Smale skateboarding

Harry skateboarding

Lena Smale is a parent living in Jersey, Channel Islands