AUCKLAND WHEELSTARZ COACHES 2017
Head Coach since 2014
At 23 years old and I have Congenital Cerebral Palsy. I have played wheelchair basketball for the past 10 years and have also had training in wheelchair rugby. Coming from a family dedicated to sport and physical prowess, I found it hard to fit in, until I found wheelchair basketball.
I was introduced to the sport by an occupational therapist during high school and found that this sport allowed me to be looked at as an equal in my family, kept me fit and active, and has taught me a lot of transferable skills and tactics.
I have played for the WheelStarz for the past 3 seasons and now I hold the position of Assistant Coach were I have been given this amazing opportunity to teach younger athletes what I know and help them develop into skilled, confident and successful players.
AUCKLAND WHEELSTARZ PLAYERS 2017
I am 19 years old and have left leg paralysis. I love sports and have previously been involved with rowing, archery, target shooting and swimming. I have been playing wheelchair basketball for over 3 years and started because the opportunity was there. In time it has turned into a passion. I really enjoy the physical part as well as the people, that is, my team mates and coach.
I have always wanted to represent New Zealand in sports and my goal is to become a future Paralympian. Last year I was selected for the New Zealand U23 Wheelchair Basketball Team and represented my country in Australia in July 2016. In the WheelStarz team I love helping the younger ones learn and develop their skills.
I am 20 years old and have Spina Bifida and Tetralogy of Fallot. I have been with the Auckland WheelStarz for 4 years. I had been playing the sport for 6 years but nothing was available back then for young people so I had no choice but to join the adult league.
After playing mainstream netball and softball there was nowhere to go when the sport became competitive and I couldn't keep up. I also play physically disabled rugby league and wheelchair turbo touch. I love playing wheelchair basketball with players my age because it is so much fun. What do I get out of being with the Auckland WheelStarz? Fitness, friendship and competition.
I am 12 years old and I have Spina Bifida. I have been active most of my life and have tried out lots of different sports. I now swim competitively and also participate in several triathlons and cycling events every year. I hope to represent New Zealand at the Paralympics when I am older in swimming.
I joined a wheelchair basketball programme a few years ago but it didn't last. When the Auckland WheelStarz began I joined up right away. It was so awesome to finally be a part of a team, and train every week with young people like me. Last season I won "Most Improved Player" for my team. I love wheelchair basketball because it is fun, it's competitive and it doesn't matter if you have a disability.
I am 20 years old and my disability is above leg amputation. I used to play soccer before my amputation. The reason I play wheelchair basketball is because I love the sport, it keeps me active, and gives me the ability to show people I can do things despite my disability. If I can do it then so can everyone else.
Last year I was selected for the New Zealand U23 Wheelchair Basketball team and got to represent my country in Australia. I enjoy playing for the Auckland WheelStarz and assisting with coaching the team when our coach is unavailable.
I am 15 years old and I have Spina Bifida. I played netball until my first year of intermediate when it started to get more fast paced. I had heard about wheelchair basketball from a friend who plays for a Taranaki team and she encouraged me to give it a go.
I have now been playing for 3 years and I absolutely love it. I used to think of sport as something I wouldn't be very involved in but discovering wheelchair basketball and wheelchair turbo touch has given me a whole new mindset. I love the competitiveness, speed, fitness, learning new techniques and meeting a lot of awesome people. I have travelled to Australia to play in a women's wheelchair basketball festival and look forward to more tournaments this year. I can't wait to see what the future holds for me and other young players in wheelchair basketball.
I am 21 years old and I have Cerebral Palsy. I have been playing wheelchair basketball for 3 years. I really enjoy wheelchair basketball as it gives me purpose and motivation to keep pushing hard to get better and better each time I train.
It is great being a part of the Auckland WheelStarz. In early 2017 I got the opportunity to travel to Australia and attend the Women's Festival of Wheelchair Basketball held in Sydney. It was an amazing experience to play alongside Paralympians and learn valuable skills to bring back to New Zealand.
I am 20 years old and I have right leg paralysis from a sporting injury in 2014. I competed at a high level in netball and cheer-leading until I sustained my injury. I started wheelchair basketball in beginning of 2016. The Auckland WheelStarz have given me something to look forward to for the first time since my accident. I have met some amazing people who have helped me see that being in a wheelchair doesn't mean that I can't still do what I enjoy, which is sports. I have been given some amazing opportunities through the Auckland WheelStarz like competing at the Junior Disability Games and trying out other sports I didn't know I could do or would want to do. My goal is to be a future Paralympian and represent the country in wheelchair basketball as well as athletic events.
I am 11 years old and at 3 years of age I developed poliomyelitis-like-syndrome which resulted in lower-limb paralysis.
I am active both both at school and in my local community getting involved with a number of things including sport.
I love being with the WheelStarz team. I enjoy the challenge of becoming faster and getting more accurate with my passing and shooting, plus being a valuable team player.
I thrive on the speed of wheelchair basketball and wheelchair turbo touch. I would like to race wheelchairs for New Zealand at the Paralympics one day.
I am 18 years old and able-bodied. I competed at a high level in cheerleading and played netball for many years. I first discovered the Auckland WheelStarz when I went to watch my sister Tamara train. I was offered the opportunity to try it and I loved it and the people. I look forward to learning new basketball skills and getting on the court and having fun.