Ilayda Afra Yurtsuz
Type of Impairment
S12, SB12, SM12
Further personal information
Sport specific information
When and where did you begin this sport?
She began Para swimming in 2016 in Istanbul, Turkey.
Why this sport?
She was originally involved in Para canoe before switching to Para swimming. "Everything started when I couldn't see the blackboard in primary school. I was an insecure, withdrawn child because of this situation. Before my impairment I didn't have a sports life, but was encouraged to take up Para canoe and I participated in this thanks to my physical education teacher. Then I was offered to take up Para swimming. At first I thought of it as swimming only, but after five months my life changed. I got a complete swimmer's physique, and I love the water."
She has undergone knee surgery on her meniscus during her career. (haberler.com, 25 Oct 2019)
Sporting philosophy / motto
"My advice to my impaired friends like me is that they should never give up. They should hold onto life and become champions." (haberler.com, 25 Oct 2019)
At age eight a teacher recognised that she had difficulty reading the blackboard in school, resulting in the diagnosis of a visual impairment. (haberler.com, 25 Oct 2019)