Top 10 para-athletes to follow on Instagram ahead of Rio 2016

Already at London 2012, digital media pundits were touting Instagram as the next big thing. But which para-athletes will be the next big thing on Instagram? 06 Sep 2013
Australia's Kelly Cartwright

Kelly Cartwright at the IPC Athletics World Championships in Christchurch, New Zealand.

ⒸGetty Images

With just more than 1,000 days until the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games begin, find out who are the most promising Paralympic hopefuls for Rio 2016 on Instagram.

1. @zmadell

Canada’s Zak Madell proved in London that he has what it takes to challenge Australia’s Ryley Batt, who is often dubbed as the greatest wheelchair rugby player ever. Madell has a brilliant, self-deprecating sense of humour. He’s even started posting videos.

2. @alanathejane

Getting ready to be on set, taking us through her shoulder operation, and showing us her life as a skier and wheelchair basketball player. USA’s Alana Nichols does an excellent job at documenting her life in pictures, giving a real insight into what it takes to be a winner.

3. @YuChuiYee

Hong Kong’s Yu Chui Yee is arguably one of the best wheelchair fencers of all time. Although she often posts in Chinese, her pictures of cutesy alien soft toys and Asian curiosities are well worth following.

4. @WillBayleyTT

OK, so Will Bayley is a bit of a poser and can often be caught pouting “blue steel style” with an edgy filter wacked on, but what’s nice about the Brit’s pics is that he posts regularly and he’s very real.

5. @KellyCartwright

Kelly Cartwright shows off her tattoos, her luscious red lips and a date night with her friends. This Aussie sprinter is a lot of fun to follow. If you like her, you might also want to follow other T42 sprinnters like @VanessaLow90 of Germany for general gourgeousness and USA’s @ScoutBassett for humour and colour.

6. @joshvandervies

Welcome to the life of boccia player Josh van der Vies – see what the Canadian eats, what his favourite memories are and watch his son grow up.

7. @StinnaTange

The Danish dressage rider Stinna Tange Kaastrup was tipped for the podium at London 2012, but sadly never made it after her horse died suddenly. No doubt though she’ll be back for Rio 2016. Follow her on Instagram to keep up with her progress.

8. @scottreardo

Australia’s Scott Reardon posts anything from his teammate Evan O’Hanlon sporting a very dubious 80’s moustache to biomechanics testing and one-legged water skiing. If you follow this track athlete you might as well follow @evanohanlon too for more moustaches and quirky details.

9. @SailingHannah

Great Britain’s Hannah Stodel is hilarious and very uplifting, posting inspirational and funny slogans, alongside pics of herself in bunny ears.

10. @federicomorlacchi

At the 2013 IPC Swimming World Championships in Montreal, the Italian swimmer proved he could not only take cute swimwear snaps of himself strutting his stuff, but also has what it takes to make it to the top. Federico Morlachhi brought home a gold, silver and bronze medal from Canada.