Name: Karen Darke
Lives: Scotland and Majorca
Rides: A carbon handbike
What are you proud of?
I suppose I’m most proud of navigating the challenges of paralysis and creating a fulfilling and exciting life since then, including a lot of adventures I previously thought would be impossible. I’m a bit proud of winning silver at the London Paralympics in 2012 and Gold in the Rio Paralympics 2016 because I know how much hard work and commitment it took over a long period of time ☺
What have you done?
Found alternative ways to adventure around the world, learn, and share it with others.
Handbiked across or around 6 of the 7 continents (Antarctica left to figure out!). Sit-skied across Greenland. Climbed El Capitan. Kayaked the Inside Passage from Canada to Alaska. Won the 2012 World Paratriathlon Championships. A couple of Paralymic medals in handcycling. Competed for Scotland in the 2018 Commonwealth Games. Have the Guinness Record for the female armpower landspeed record (broken in 2018, Nevada).
What are you scared of?
That my body won't always be able to keep up with my mind and dreams - I'm rather reliant on small parts of it, like my shoulders and arms.
What are you up to?
Training for the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games – I think it will be the last one, as other adventures, projects and things are calling: for example the Quest 79 project to cycle the 7 continents (more at www.karendarke.com/quest79) and raise £79 K for the Spinal Injuries Association. I also finished training in sports psychology, performance coaching, and counselling so am keen to use my experience and learning to helping others achieve their goals and big dreams ☺