Shen Yugong won her 3rd Paralympic Gold Medal in Sitting Volleyball (in a row) at London 2012 and has been the one of the sports best attackers for over a decade.
To read all about her background and how she got into Sitting Volleyball please click on her name above or HERE.
Jay Keeping Photography
Click on a country to find out more information and read their sitting volleyball 'player stories'.
‘I was born in 1980 and my right hip was broken. As I have grown my right leg is 23 cm shorter than my left leg. Despite this, my parents have never treated me any different to other children. While growing up in Pitomača (a small city in Croatia) I have never been member of any organisation for disabled people or been involved in any activities for them. I always had a lot of energy and optimism about life. Adrenalin was my goal for a long time. My greatest wish was to become a car racer, not an athlete. As I have never really been interested in sport, or even enough to practice one, not even in School.
Now, I live in Zagreb, and until 2012 the sport of Sitting Volleyball was unknown to me. In 2012 the President of Croatian Sitting Volleyball Federation (Mr Ćorluka) literally stopped me in the street and started talking to me about sitting volleyball. He invited me to sport hall to see sitting volleyball training and only watching one training session was enough to keep me around sitting volleyball. Until that moment I have never seen myself as an athlete.
Today, when I think about sitting volleyball, I consciously can say that there are no words that could describe why I love this sport. Everyone who plays sitting volleyball will understand me when I say: “…simply, I love to play ball…’ When I sit on the court, only volleyball is in my mind, nothing else, everything else is forgotten.
Sometimes I ask myself: Why sitting volleyball? The answer is simple: because of the adrenalin, the team work, and the chance to launch my energy onto the playing court to smash the ball. My goal is to motivate my teammates to work and practice more.
My biggest wish is to promote sitting volleyball among female disabled people to help them understand the importance of sport and to get them involved in sitting volleyball. The main goal for me is to expand the number of female sitting volleyball players and organize our own national woman league in the future.'