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Real stories: Our Founder

Woman hanging upside with blue sky and red silks hanging down.

Circus arts are not restrictive and do not discriminate against you because you are old, young, weak, inflexible or disabled.  You only need to look at the Paralympics and the amazing things the athletes achieve to start realising this.

This is our founder's real story of her own personal battles and how she fell in love with circus arts.

As a child, I loved sports and used to do gymnastics for an hour a week for fun for a few years.  When I was 16 I was hit by a car and broke my arm so bad that it had a metal plate was inserted to keep the bone together.  I was told I wouldn't be able to do gymnastics again.

After that I lost interest in sports, believing I couldn't do it. 

After about 10 years I thought I should get back into some sort of exercise and I went to join my local gym.  I didn't find the gym particularly inspiring and I was scared that I could feel twinges in my arm when lifting the smallest weights.  I really missed gymnastics but tried to put it out of my mind.

Then 2012 happened and it all changed.

I was lucky enough to get tickets for the Paralympics in London.  As I sat there watching the impressive athletes I thought "this race is amazing, this woman has one arm and no legs, but she's swimming way faster than I could manage."

Then I started thinking, "well if she can do it, surely I have a chance?".

I plucked up the courage to go to my nearest adult gymnastics class, thinking that there was a good chance I would be able to do nothing because of my arm and my dream would be over, with the thought in my mind that there was a chance I wouldn't be able to do anything and I would just have to live with that.

Amazingly I spent almost two hours doing handstands and cartwheels and my arm felt great. Yes, I ached horribly the next day (actually for quite a few days...), but it felt good!

I hadn't been going too long before someone suggested I might like aerial silks. I tried a class they recommended and instantly loved it.  Everything just escalated from there and I like to try as many circus arts as I can fit into my busy schedule.

As I tried more aerials and heard other people's amazing stories, I realised that circus arts are really open to everyone.  I haven't thought about my arm for years and don't even think of it as a disadvantage.  I've been stronger and more flexible in my 30's than I ever have been in my whole life.

Circus Everyday founder X

Featured image attribution: Matt Greensmith