Athletes With Special Needs Compete For Gold
The 4th annual FargoMania competition is back at the SHAC
FARGO, N.D. — Jackie Long says she’s been an athlete for as long as she can remember.
“I’m trying to keep myself going, so this is one way for me to keep my health and keep myself going,” she said.
But it was only four years ago that she was finally able to compete for a medal.
“We train for about, like, eight weeks, and then we have our competition.”
What she was training for is FargoMania — a CrossFit–style tournament started four years ago by TNT Kid’s Fitness for those with special needs.
“When people think ‘disabilities,’ they don’t think that people are able to do things like this. But I think these kinds of things can kind of showcase that just because these individuals have a disability, that doesn’t mean that they can’t do what everybody else can do, and in some cases, they can do even more than what able–bodied people can do,” said Tim Frie with TNT Kid’s Fitness.
Long is one of 90 athletes competing in this year’s event.
“Sometimes when they get their medals, it’s fun to watch because a lot of them haven’t been able to win anything in their entire life, so watching them get to win an event and see their expression is awesome,” said Frie.
But Long says her motivation is more than just a shiny medal.
“I want to keep my health and keep myself, my momentum and keep myself going, so that’s why I’m doing this. Because I want to be able to live longer and have a good life,” she said.
Although the competition gets bigger every year, this is the last one for FargoMania.
Instead, TNT is starting the Able Games in 2020.
It’ll be an event where everybody, disabled or not, can compete together.
“We’re really excited, and we’re hoping our community gets excited, too. We want people to sign up, you know, make teams, and compete with these individuals,” said Frie.
He says being active should be something everyone in the community can enjoy together.
Congratulations to Long who won the female division of the competition!
The Fargo Able Games competition is scheduled for April 3 and 4 at Scheels Arena.
Find more information at http://www.tntkidsfitness.org/.