On March 17, 2010 Paralympian Alana Nichols landed a Gold Medal in the Sit-Ski Women’s Giant Slalom in the Winter Games. This was her second gold in these Games (the first was in the Downhill) with the first being in the Summer Games of 2008. The first female Paralympian to accomplish such a feat. Today, she amazingly went on to win her third medal of these Games with a Silver in the Sit-Ski Women’s Super G.
Alana Nichols may have broken her back in 2000 in a snowboarding accident and became paralyzed from the waist down, but she was determined to rehab and stay active. Alana initially took up wheelchair basketball competition excelling enough to earn a scholarship to the University of Arizona team. Although she was on the 2008 US Paralympics Women’s Wheelchair Basketball National Team that won gold, Alana’s real love was the mountains. She described “Basketball as a means to an end.”
Shortly after Alana’s team won gold, she went on to obtain a grant to learn adaptive skiing at the Santa Fe Resort. While visiting Winter Park, Co., Alana joined the National Sports Center for the Disabled (NSCD) where she has trained since. She says the coaching staff has provided incredible training and support throughout her development. Not only is Alana going away with a bright future in Sit-Skiing, She is fully prepared for the next step in life after sport. Alana has a MA in Kinesiology from the University of Alabama. She plans to work with individual with spinal cord injuries and introduce them to sport. Meanwhile, Alana grab it all each day as you are doing now.