5 months ago

Stone mason paralysed from waist down completes his own adapted “triathlon” event

A stone mason who thought he’d never walk again after being left paralysed from the waist down in a work accident has completed his own adapted triathlon event.

Martyn Piercy, 47, who broke his back and neck in 2015, spent three months training for his cycle, walk and swim challenge with his cousin Stephen Piercy, 42.

He began at 8am with a 100m walk in callipers across his back garden while Stephen set off on a six-mile run, which they both completed in roughly an hour.

The pair then took to the road for a 15-mile cycle ride before heading over to their local pool, where Martyn completed a 500m swim while Stephen swam 750m.

Friends and family were present to roar the pair on when they finished the final section of their gruelling four-hour physical event in Thirsk, North Yorks., on Sunday.

Martyn said the toughest part of the challenge was his time in the water after his right leg - which he can normally use to kick for 250m - froze up soon after he began.

He said: “It was a 17m long pool, and my legs hardly had any kick quite early on in the process. I was just using my upper body.

“When I walk, my legs get heavy and tired, and when I was on the bike, my arms get tired, so putting that together, I had to work hard on the swim.

“But you shouldn’t do this if you don’t want to be challenged.”

Cricket-mad Martyn, who previously played for Yorkshire's under-19 team, was flown to hospital by air ambulance following his freak workplace incident in August 2015.

And despite undergoing emergency nine-hour surgery, he sadly still lost mobility in the lower part of his body.

He came up with the idea for the event with his cousin and former batting partner Stephen before they set about creating the unique course near his home.

And Martyn said it was “special” for the pair to complete their swim in an almost identical time while raising almost £5,000 for Yorkshire Air Ambulance.

He said: “We finished the last length together, within a second of each other, which worked out really well.

“We’ve been partners for ten years, so it was quite special to complete it together. We were used to cricket balls flying over our heads at 90 miles an hour.

“It’s fantastic to give away the money too. It’s the first time I have done something testing for charity. We think it will go over £5,000.

“The Yorkshire Air Ambulance costs £12,000 a day to keep up and running, so hopefully this will go a long way to helping somebody else."

Martyn was an avid footballer and cricketer, having played with the XII at Yorkshire for a stint before going on to have success with his town’s team prior to his accident.

And he said these interests had helped him to keep up his physiotherapy over the last eight years, which he sees as his full-time occupation as he spends nearly five hours a day devoted to it.

He went on: “That’s helped me through. I travel all over the country for physiotherapy, and I can now ‘sit down ski’, which I love. It feels like a go-kart. I also do archery.

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