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Ohio Man Born Without Legs Due To Rare Condition Is Now Pro Freestyle Wrestler

by : Emily Brown on : 23 Jun 2020 15:54
Man Born Without Legs Due To Rare Condition Is Now Pro Freestyle WrestlerMan Born Without Legs Due To Rare Condition Is Now Pro Freestyle WrestlerIstvan Lettang/Barcroft Media via Getty Images

A man who was born without legs due to a genetic disorder defied everyone who doubted his abilities by becoming a professional freestyle wrestler. 

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Zion Clark, from Ohio, was born with Caudal Regression Syndrome, a serious disorder that affects approximately a fifth of every 100,000 births and impairs the development of the lower spine.

Zion was put into foster care at a young age, though his foster mother Kimberlii ultimately decided to adopt him.

Zion and mum KimberliiZion and mum KimberliiIstvan Lettang/Barcroft Media via Getty Images

Growing up, Zion was often mocked by bullies for his condition, but he didn’t let them stop him from striving for his goals, and in second grade he started developing his love of athleticism by taking up wrestling.

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Zion said:

People would make fun of me because I didn’t have legs. The best way to deal with haters is to use the hate to lift yourself up.

The haters are your biggest fans – use that to your advantage.

Recalling his first few matches, Zion, now 22, admitted that he ‘didn’t know what to do and neither did [his] opponent’. He said some children were ‘scared’ to wrestle him, while he felt the same about them, but he managed to adapt his wrestling with ‘a lot of trial and error.’

Man born with no legs became pro freestyle wrestlerMan born with no legs became pro freestyle wrestlerIstvan Lettang/Barcroft Media via Getty Images

Though school ‘wasn’t the greatest time’ for Zion, he explained he was able to ‘turn it around’ when he was a senior, after which he went to college and was able to ‘do everything [he] wanted to do.’

The athlete spent ‘years figuring out what would work’ when it came to wrestling, and he now trains twice a day, six days a week to ensure he’s the best he can be.

Zion said:

The biggest lesson I’ve had to learn is that things won’t always go your way. You have to work with what you’ve got.

Once you’re able to work with what you have, multiple doors just start to open.

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Man born with no legs became pro freestyle wrestlerMan born with no legs became pro freestyle wrestlerIstvan Lettang/Barcroft Media via Getty Images

Zion gives Kimberlii a lot of credit for helping him achieve success, as she has always been by his side to cheer him on. He described his relationship with his mum as ‘fantastic’, adding: ‘She’s the greatest woman I know.’

The 22-year-old stressed that being born without legs hasn’t stopped him from doing the things he wants to do, and in the future he hopes to make the Olympic team and ‘be one of the best freestyle wrestlers in the world.’

Zion’s unwavering determination will no doubt see him go far.

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Emily Brown

Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.

Topics: Life, Caudal Regression Syndrome, Now, Ohio, Wrestling, Zion Clark