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26854-Daniel Kirk photo

Daniel Kirk

Athletics

Biography

Impairment information

Origin of Impairment
Acquired
Classification
F44

Further personal information

Family
Wife Kim, daughter Zendaya [2020]
Residence
Adelaide, SA, AUS
Occupation
Athlete, Business Owner, Coach
Languages
English
Higher education
Health Studies, Human Movement Studies, Sports Science - University of South Australia: Adelaide, SA, AUS

Sport specific information

When and where did you begin this sport?
He took up Para athletics in 2015 at age 32 in Adelaide, SA, Australia, after recovering from the injury that ended his Australian rules football career.
Why this sport?
He wanted to find something to focus on after his accident, so he contacted the Australian Paralympic Committee who helped him find a sport that suited his abilities. "I found purpose in training towards something again. I felt lost following my impairment and athletics restored my sense of achievement and general well-being."
Name of coach
Steve Larsson [personal]

International debut

Year
2017
Competing for
Australia
Tournament
World Championships
Location
London, ENG

General interest

Nicknames
Kirky (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)
Hobbies
Exploring outdoors, cycling, playing with his dog. (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)
Memorable sporting achievement
Competing at the 2017 World Championships in London, England. (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)
Most influential person in career
Australian Para thrower Russell Short. (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)
Hero / Idol
Swiss tennis player Roger Federer. (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)
Injuries
In 2018 he suffered a back injury that took him six weeks to recover from. (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)

In 2017 he sustained an elbow injury that sidelined him until June that year. (sasi.sa.gov.au, 09 Jun 2017)

In 2011 an ankle injury kept him away from competition for four weeks. (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)

In 2008 he tore a quadriceps muscle and was out of action for five weeks. (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)

In 2004 and 2010 he sustained knee injuries. He injured his back in 2005. (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)
Sporting philosophy / motto
"Be kind and do no harm." (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)
Other sports
He played semi-professional Australian rules football in the South Australian National Football League [SANFL] for the Glenelg club for eight seasons from 2005 to 2012. (YouTube, 06 Sep 2015; hptraining.com.au, 02 Aug 2015)
Ambitions
To compete at the 2020 Paralympic Games in Tokyo. (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)
Impairment
In 2012 he injured his right ankle while playing Australian rules football in the South Australian National Football League [SANFL]. The injury and six subsequent failed operations ended his Australian rules football career and left him with 20% range of movement in his lower leg. "I had a pretty innocuous injury where I landed badly on my ankle. I was very lost [after receiving the permanent impairment diagnosis], I struggled with identity, wondered what life was going to be." (7NEWS Adelaide Facebook page, 05 Mar 2020; Athlete, 06 Nov 2019; hptraining.com.au, 02 Aug 2015)
Other information
OCCUPATION
In 2019 he co-founded NEXA High Performance Sport, a sports coaching business based in Adelaide, SA, Australia. He has also worked as a strength and conditioning coach for the Australian College of Sport and the Darren Lehman Cricket Academy, while he is a certified Australian rules football coach and he has taught sport and fitness at TAFE colleges in South Australia. (LinkedIn profile, 03 Oct 2020; Athlete, 06 Nov 2019; sasi.sa.gov.au, 09 Jun 2017; athletics.com.au, 01 Jan 2017)

IDENTITY CRISIS
Taking up Para athletics, in addition to the support he received from the Australian Paralympic Committee, has helped him deal with the identity crisis he faced after the 2012 injury that ended his Australian rules football career. "Honestly it was soul crushing. It was really hard. I'm sure that there are people who had it worse than me as well, but it was a really tough confrontation, I guess, with yourself. You lose that identity of who you are and who you've attached yourself to over the years. You're lost, you don't know what to do with yourself." (abc.net.au, 13 Jul 2017)

OTHER ACTIVITIES
In 2015/16 he ran as an independent candidate for the South Australian seat of Hindmarsh. Between 2014 and 2019 he worked as a mentor for KickStart4Kids, a charity that helps disadvantaged school children in South Australia. (LinkedIn profile, 03 Oct 2020; athletics.com.au, 01 Sep 2017; sasi.sa.gov.au, 09 Jun 2017)

Results

Unit Date Rank
World Para Athletics Championships London 2017 (London, Great Britain)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's Discus Throw F44 Final 1 2017-07-16 7
Men's Shot Put F44 Final 1 2017-07-23 5