HATS OFF TO AMBER | ONE17 NOTES MAGAZINE | AUTUMN/WINTER 2018 | ISSUE 9
Having a rare genetic, neurological condition that causes progressive spasticity and paralysis in the lower limbs and trunk has certainly not limited the ambitions of Huddersfield teenager Amber Meikle-Janney.
At the age of 13 Amber began to lose the use of her legs.It took 12 months, many tests and countless hospital visits to be told that she had a complicated form of a rare progressive disease called Hereditary Spastic Paraplegia, in her case so rare that scientists have yet to find the gene responsible. Her condition deteriorated rapidly and she soon became a full time wheelchair user with no voluntary movement from the chest down. She also had to battle violent spasms and fatigue and understandably struggled with anxiety, social surroundings and managing to attend school. This is when she first came across the idea of adaptive skiing and had her first lesson in a monoski with Disability Snowsport UK at the Chill Factore in Manchester. She found a new freedom in monoskiing and this really helped her to adjust to life with a disability.
Three years ago she was spotted by the performance director for the British Disabled Ski Team (now called British Parasnowsport) and invited to train with the development squad - this was just the beginning of an amazing journey. Amber is now a member of the British Parasnowsport Development Squad. In the women's sitting category for slalom she is 1st in Britain and 24th in the world. She entered her first giant slalom race last season and will continue to push the boundaries as she aims one day to represent Great Britain at the Paralympic Winter Games.
She found a new freedom in monoskiing and this really helped her to adjust to life with a disability.
However, training to compete in the Paralympics does not come cheap, so this enthusiastic athlete has turned her hobby of crocheting into a fundraising exercise. Time off the slopes is spent making hats that she sells to help towards the costs of specialist equipment and training. Amber’s Handmade Hats are certainly a must have accessory for this winter season. Help to support the British Parasnowsport Development Squad by adding them to your Christmas shopping list, but don’t leave it too late - they’re selling fast!
Follow the progress of this amazing athlete at
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Amber’s Handmade Hats visit -