Current Highland Games super star, Spencer Tyler, and future Highland Games (and potential Olympian:) super star, Sebastiana Lopez (and her pup, Bravo), sit down with KO to cover all things resilience, dedication, and trailblazing. They are both currently breaking barriers with a “non-mainstream” sport on the field AND breaking barriers in the sports medicine and recovery medical fields (aka off the field:). They each have an inspiring story to share on competing: professionally, with one’s self, and with a crowded sports industry… from stereotypes, to funding, to training – we cover it all!
Competing after college and after serious injury, personal identity evolution, growing with the sport you love, training/raising future competitive studs (parenting and coaching), and how an animal (a pet:) can change your life so much for the better!
Former collegiate All-American in shot put and discus. Five events world record holder in the Highland games. North American, national, and US Champion in Highland games. All around kinda neat guy………… kinda. <– His words haha. My words, great dude, even better beer drinker and competitive athlete:)
Sebastiana had a motorcycle accident while on active duty (Air force) in 2015. She was in an induced coma for about a month, flatlining lined 3 times. She lost her right leg above the knee and hand function in both hands. She then spent 2 years at Walter Reed rehabbing. It took her about a year to start to walk and 2 years to walk consistently. It took about the same amount of time to learn how to dress, feed herself, write, speak(stroke), and drive . She competed in her first sporting events 1yr post accident in the 2016 Warrior and Invictus games. Medaling at both. Her Goal at the time of leaving the hospital was to be able to live completely alone. With tons of help from people surrounding her, she surpassed that!
Accomplishments (thus far):
2019 USA Para panamerican games medalist
Shot put -bronze
Arnold’s Strongest disabled woman 2019/2018
Invictus games 2018
Shot put: gold