Paralympic Winter Games
04 - 13 March

Ebba Aarsjoe hopes her victory can inspire children with disabilities

Swedish Para Alpine skier wins maiden Paralympic title in Beijing 07 Mar 2022
Swedish Para Alpine skier Ebba Aarsjoe in action at Beijing 2022
Swedish Para Alpine skier Ebba Aarsjoe in action at Beijing 2022
ⒸGetty Images

Ebba Aarsjoe is hoping her Beijing 2022 gold medal performance can inspire children with disabilities to take up Para sports and enjoy from a healthier, more active lifestyle.

The Swede Para Alpine skier won her maiden Paralympic title in the women's super combined standing on the third day of competition (7 March) at the Yangqing National Alpine Skiing Centre.

"I want other girls with disabilities - and boys, too, for that matter - to look at me and think: 'I can do that, too'. I want to show them, I'm standing here, do like I did. You get so much stronger and become a better person.

"That is what I'm doing, that is what I'm working for, that is what is much more important than this skiing."

Aarsjoe clocked 1:56.51 to win the super combined ahead of Chinese Zhang Mengqiu (1:58.02) and Canadian Alana Ramsay (2:06.33). On claiming her first gold medal, she said: "Weird. That's cool. That's really cool.

"It was a hard run. It's salt all over the course and it was so straight. I just tried to keep it in the course the last gates. 

"I was just praying, watching her (silver medallist Zhang, who led after the super-G run) and hoping for a good sign."

The 21-year-old, who has Klippel-Trenaunay syndrome which resulted in muscle reduction in her right leg, also shared how important the Paralympic Movement was to accept herself.

"It's not only that I can keep skiing and competing against people with other disabilities. It's more about how I now view myself and how my family around me views me right now. It's so different.

"I look at myself now, compared to when I was 18, and I like myself. I look at my leg and I'm like, this is OK and this is something positive. I would never have done that without the Paras."