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Kent paralympian skier Millie Knight takes up rowing and karate

Canterbury-born paralympian, Millie Knight has taken up two new sports.

The former world champion and double silver medallist skier is now competing in rowing and karate.

Joe Coshan from KMTV spoke to Knight

When she was just one, Knight contracted an infection in her right eye and within five years, she had lost most of her sight in both eyes.

Despite this she has been skiing since the age of six, and found the experience so liberating she decided she wanted to compete professionally.

At 15 she became the youngest person to compete for ParalympicsGB (the British Paralympic Association) in the 2014 Winter Paralympics held in Sochi, Russia.

As she is visually impaired, Knight skis alongside her guide Brett Wild, who is also serves in the Royal Navy.

Knight and Wild who won a bronze in slalom and a silver in both the super-G and downhill skiing in the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

Knight and her guide Wild celebrate winning silver at the Winter Paralympics in South Korea
Knight and her guide Wild celebrate winning silver at the Winter Paralympics in South Korea

As a teenager, not only was she a confident skier, she also started rowing at 13.

However, this took a back seat so she could concentrate on her skiing career, but she recently took up the sport again.

Knight, who is now 20 said: "Something that I am really enjoying is the fact that rowing is a team sport. Apart from myself and Brett, skiing isn't really a team sport. So doing things with other people and working toward the same goal is fantastic."

The paralympian said she is really enjoying karate and loves everyone she has been training with.

She added: "Obviously, I can't see very far. But the good thing about karate is that you are only ever at an arms length from the person, so they're always within my sight range.

"What's interesting is that I thought I had quite good awareness of my body and where it is in relation to the rest of my body.

"But I really didn't.

Knight, 20, showing her karate skills
Knight, 20, showing her karate skills

"So karate has made me more aware of my body and the way that I have to move, as well as my coordination and agility.

"That is a seriously vital part of skiing and rowing. So everything that I'm doing at the moment is working hand in hand towards the same goal."

Knight says training for the last year to get back to a competitive level has been very difficult after she suffered an injury, but has also been extremely rewarding.

She added: "Last year I had to take the season out - so I didn't compete - which gave me a fantastic opportunity to just train and regain my love for skiing. I am now so much fitter and stronger and race-ready than I was a year ago."

If she does decide to compete professionally in rowing and karate, she would be one of only a few paralympians competing in both the winter and summer games.

Knight in action at the winter Paralympics
Knight in action at the winter Paralympics

Joe Phillips, her rowing coach said: "I think there would be a lot of people wanting her to succeed, not only because she's such a likeable person, but it would be a great thing to do. I think there are only eight people who have done the cross over between the two paralympics - winter and summer.

"It's quite a rare event so she would be exceptional if she did it and I would be more than pleased to help her do that."

Knight is now training to compete in the 2022 Paralympic games in Beijing.

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