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Vanessa Low

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Country  Germany
Coached by  Roderick Green
Coach  Roderick Green
Disability class  T42
Sport  Paralympic athletics
Paralympic finals  2012, 2016
Club  Bayer 04 Leverkusen
Paralympic final  2012 Summer Paralympics

Born  17 July 1990 (age 26) (1990-07-17) Schwerin, East Germany
Similar  Martina Caironi, Markus Rehm, David Behre, Heinrich Popow, Scott Reardon

Vanessa Low (born 17 July 1990) is a Paralympic athlete from Germany competing in T42 sprint and long jump events.


Vanessa Low Five facts aboutGermany39s Vanessa Low

In 2016, Low is the only actively competing female track athlete with two above knee amputations of her legs. Despite the severity of these amputations and despite her having to compete with athletes having one fully functional leg, she successfully made it to the Finals of all of her sprint and long jump competitions at both the 2012 Summer Paralympics in London and the 2016 Summer Paralympics in Rio. In Rio she won the Gold medal with a 4.93m world record distance in the T42 long jump and a Silver medal in the T42 100m competition.

Vanessa Low Vanessa Low Vanessa Low Pinterest Interview

Personal history

Vanessa Low Vanessa Low GER competes in the women39s long jump F4244 final

Low was born in Schwerin, Germany. She grew up in Ratzeburg, Germany. In June 2006, at the age of 15, she was struck by a train at a railway platform after losing her balance. The accident severed her left leg and left her in a coma for two months. During life-saving surgery her doctors were forced to amputate her other leg. It took Low two years to relearn to walk using her prostheses.

Sporting career

Low enjoyed sports before her accident, and wished to continue playing after. She also stated that she was inspired by American disabled long jumper Cameron Clapp. She took up athletics in 2008 and made her senior sports debut the same year, but broke her elbow in 2009, putting her out of competition for three months. Two years later she was selected for the German national team, travelling to Christchurch in New Zealand to compete at the 2011 IPC Athletics World Championships. There she finished fourth in the long jump and won bronze in the T42 100m sprint.

In 2012 Low qualified for both the 100m sprint and long jump events for the Summer Paralympics in London. The long jump was open across three classifications, F42 to F44, and was decided on a points system. Her best result of 3.93m saw her finish in sixth place. In the sprint she recorded a time of 16.78, which left her just outside the medal positions, finishing fourth behind team-mate Jana Schmidt. Low was disappointed with her performance at the Games and her training in general leading up to the Paralympics. She consulted her trainer, Steffi Nerius, and decided to retire from competitive sport.

Vanessa Low Vanessa Low Wikipedia

In 2013, Low visited her friend and fellow German athlete Katrin Green, who was living in the United States and was married to American athlete Roderick Green. While training with the Greens, Low found her passion for athletics rekindled and decided to move to the States, and took Roderick on as her new trainer. By the end of the year she was back representing Germany, this time at the 2013 World Championships in Lyon. There she won two bronze medals, in the 100m sprint and the long jump. The following year saw a major breakthrough in her long jump, when she competed at the 2014 IPC Athletics European Championships in Swansea. Her distance of 4.24m was a big improvement on her previous major competitions, where she had not jumped over four metres. The result saw her win gold, and more importantly, beat her two major world rivals: Schmidt and Italy's Martina Caironi.

Vanessa Low Vanessa Low Paralympic Runner Reunited With Missing Prosthetic Legs

In the build up to the 2016 Summer Paralympics in Rio, Low competed at the 2015 World Championships in Doha. In the 100m sprint she posted a personal best of 15.41s to win the silver medal, but it was her world record distance of 4.79m in the long jump that not only gave her the gold but also set her out as the athlete to beat at Rio.

At the 2016 Summer Paralympics in Rio de Janeiro, she won the Gold medal with a 4.93m world record distance in the T42 long jump and a Silver medal in the T42 100m competition with a personal best of 15.17s.


Vanessa Low Wikipedia