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31236-Andrea Lucia Velasquez de Luca photo

Andrea Lucia Velasquez de Luca

Swimming

Biography

Impairment information

Origin of Impairment
Acquired
Classification
S7, SB7, SM7

Further personal information

Occupation
Athlete, Manager
Languages
English, Spanish
Higher education
Dietics, Nutrition - Latin American University of Science and Technology: Panama City, PAN

Sport specific information

When and where did you begin this sport?
In late 2016 she took up able-bodied swimming. In September 2017 she was informed about Para swimming and tried it out in Panama.
Why this sport?
She used to compete in taekwondo and after sustaining her impairment, wanted to return to competitive sport. "When I faced the challenge of having a disability and wanting to do sports again, at the beginning it was hard because I was mad with myself and the entire world. When I learnt that Para swimming existed, I was born again. I feel alive when I swim. I feel like I don't have any limits in the water."
Training Regime
.

International debut

Year
2018
Competing for
Panama
Tournament
Central American and Caribbean Championships
Location
Managua, NCA

General interest

Hobbies
Reading, travelling. (Athlete, 07 Sep 2019)
Memorable sporting achievement
Winning two silver medals at the 2018 Central American and Caribbean Championships in Managua, Nicaragua. (Athlete, 07 Sep 2019)
Most influential person in career
Her parents. (Athlete, 07 Sep 2019)
Other sports
She has represented Panama in taekwondo at youth level in international competitions. (Athlete, 07 Sep 2019)
Impairment
One month after being selected for the Panama taekwondo team that would compete at 2010 Central American and Caribbean Championships, she had a brain haemorrhage and later discovered she had an angioma. Complications during an operation on the angioma left her with spastic hemiparesis. "I had to quit taekwondo. I had always been very competitive and it was very difficult. But when I was informed about Para swimming I saw the opportunity to compete again and represent my country." (Athlete, 07 Sep 2019)
Other information
OCCUPATION
She works as a research and development [R&D] and quality assurance manager at a food ingredient manufacturer based in Atlanta, GA, United States of America. (LinkedIn profile, 01 Aug 2020)

FURTHER EDUCATION
In 2020 she completed a master's degree in food science and technology at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, LA, United States of America. (Instagram profile, 16 Aug 2020; LinkedIn profile, 01 Aug 2020)