Our ambassadors and patrons

Tully Kearney

In 2021 at the Paralympic Games in Tokyo Tully won Gold in the S5 100m freestyle and silver in the 200m freestyle.

Going into the games, a year delayed due to the pandemic was a stressful time for Tully who had been struggling with a shoulder injury. With the help of the British Para Swimming Team Physio and Paralympics GB medical team she was able to compete and even broke the world record in the 100m freestyle.

Tully’s journey in swimming started when she was about 6 years old, she used to spend most nights at the local swimming pool watching her brother train. After being invited to join in one night she completely fell in love with the sport,  started training with the local swimming club and gradually built up to full training. In 2011 at the age of 13 Tully was introduced to para swimming and was classified and following competition was selected for the podium potential programme and started to become an elite swimmer taking part in World Championships.

Tully moved to Manchester to train at the National Performance Centre and start studying Physiology and Manchester Metropolitan University. Tully suffered with a shoulder injury because of her weaker left side due to cerebral palsy and that caused her dystonia to react leaving her in a lot of pain, this meant she had to withdraw from the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games two weeks before it started.

She lost her funding and position at the National Performance Centre and had a year away from the pool to focus on university work and try out other sports which might be possible with a weaker side and limited shoulder movement. This proved difficult for Tully and she got back into the pool in 2017, pushing through the pain barriers and relearning how to swim in a new way with less range in her arms. She started training with coach and Paralympian Matt Walker (another CP Sport Ambassador).

In 2018 Tully tried Frame Running with fellow MMU sports scholar Hannah Dines and took to it straight away. She then attended a CP Sport RaceRunning (as it was called then) taster day and loved it. She had always wanted to be able to run growing up but never could so RaceRunning gave her the freedom to move around at her own pace unaided and get out of the wheelchair which she had become reliant on to move around. RaceRunning helped Tully with her general fitness and continued to train. as she made progressions in the pool.

Tully was reclassified as a S5 swimmer and qualified for the European Championships in Dublin in 2018 winning gold and bronze medals.

The combination of sports has been beneficial to Tully – Frame Running helps her fitness, strengthened push offs and feet positioning on the wall in the water and been positive socially:

“It has enabled me to socialise with other disabled athletes from a different sport and make some great friends and some people with the same conditions as myself. I took part in a CP sport athletic series event at Stoke Mandeville which was my first ever athletics competition and I absolutely loved it.”

During lockdown Tully continued training in both sports and installed an above ground pool to go in the garden which she swam in stationary attached to a bungee cord around the fence post. The Frame Runner was used on the treadmill. Tully frequently attended the CP Sport cafes in lockdown giving everyone an amazing insight into her training from home.

Tully went to the Paralympics which took place in 2021 and came away with an incredible 2 medals and a world record.

On becoming an Ambassador for CP Sport Tully said:

“I’m so honoured to have been asked to be a Sporting Ambassador for CP Sport. I’ve always loved taking part in the CP Sport swimming competitions and more recently the athletics have a go days where I was able to try Frame Running and then compete in the athletics competitions for the first time. CP Sport has helped me and many others to achieve their sporting potential”

Boy in swimming pool
Boy in swimming pool

Tully Kearney

In 2021 at the Paralympic Games in Tokyo Tully won Gold in the S5 100m freestyle and silver in the 200m freestyle.

Going into the games, a year delayed due to the pandemic was a stressful time for Tully who had been struggling with a shoulder injury. With the help of the British Para Swimming Team Physio and Paralympics GB medical team she was able to compete and even broke the world record in the 100m freestyle.

Tully’s journey in swimming started when she was about 6 years old, she used to spend most nights at the local swimming pool watching her brother train. After being invited to join in one night she completely fell in love with the sport,  started training with the local swimming club and gradually built up to full training. In 2011 at the age of 13 Tully was introduced to para swimming and was classified and following competition was selected for the podium potential programme and started to become an elite swimmer taking part in World Championships.

Tully moved to Manchester to train at the National Performance Centre and start studying Physiology and Manchester Metropolitan University. Tully suffered with a shoulder injury because of her weaker left side due to cerebral palsy and that caused her dystonia to react leaving her in a lot of pain, this meant she had to withdraw from the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games two weeks before it started.

She lost her funding and position at the National Performance Centre and had a year away from the pool to focus on university work and try out other sports which might be possible with a weaker side and limited shoulder movement. This proved difficult for Tully and she got back into the pool in 2017, pushing through the pain barriers and relearning how to swim in a new way with less range in her arms. She started training with coach and Paralympian Matt Walker (another CP Sport Ambassador).

In 2018 Tully tried Frame Running with fellow MMU sports scholar Hannah Dines and took to it straight away. She then attended a CP Sport RaceRunning (as it was called then) taster day and loved it. She had always wanted to be able to run growing up but never could so RaceRunning gave her the freedom to move around at her own pace unaided and get out of the wheelchair which she had become reliant on to move around. RaceRunning helped Tully with her general fitness and continued to train. as she made progressions in the pool.

Tully was reclassified as a S5 swimmer and qualified for the European Championships in Dublin in 2018 winning gold and bronze medals.

The combination of sports has been beneficial to Tully – Frame Running helps her fitness, strengthened push offs and feet positioning on the wall in the water and been positive socially:

“It has enabled me to socialise with other disabled athletes from a different sport and make some great friends and some people with the same conditions as myself. I took part in a CP sport athletic series event at Stoke Mandeville which was my first ever athletics competition and I absolutely loved it.”

During lockdown Tully continued training in both sports and installed an above ground pool to go in the garden which she swam in stationary attached to a bungee cord around the fence post. The Frame Runner was used on the treadmill. Tully frequently attended the CP Sport cafes in lockdown giving everyone an amazing insight into her training from home.

Tully went to the Paralympics which took place in 2021 and came away with an incredible 2 medals and a world record.

On becoming an Ambassador for CP Sport Tully said:

“I’m so honoured to have been asked to be a Sporting Ambassador for CP Sport. I’ve always loved taking part in the CP Sport swimming competitions and more recently the athletics have a go days where I was able to try Frame Running and then compete in the athletics competitions for the first time. CP Sport has helped me and many others to achieve their sporting potential”

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