7622-Joao Correia photo

Joao Correia

Athletics | Swimming


Impairment information

Type of Impairment
Spinal Cord Injuries
Origin of Impairment

Further personal information

Santo Tirso, POR
Portuguese, Spanish, English

Sport specific information

When and where did you begin this sport?
He took up athletics in 1992 at a club in Braga, Portugal. His first competition was at age 16.
Why this sport?
He became interested in the sport after watching a half marathon in which there were wheelchair racers competing.
Club / Team
Centro de Atletismo de Santo Tirso: Portugal
Name of coach
Jenny Archer [personal], from 2015

International debut

Competing for
European Championships
Assen, NED

General interest

Reading, watching TV, cooking. (, 01 Apr 2020)
Memorable sporting achievement
Winning a silver medal in the 200m at the 2003 European Championships in Assen, Netherlands. (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)
Most influential person in career
Swiss wheelchair racer Heinz Frei, who gave him his first racing wheelchair. (Facebook page, 03 Oct 2019;, 10 Jun 2017; Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)
Hero / Idol
Swiss wheelchair racer Heinz Frei. (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)
In August 2018 he underwent back surgery and returned to competition in January 2019. (, 10 Sep 2019)

An injury forced him to undergo surgery on his spinal cord in January 2006. After the procedure, he rushed back to training in order to compete and obtain a qualifying time for the 2006 World Championships in Assen, Netherlands. He reached his goal and qualified for the event, but while competing, he began noticing a loss of upper-body strength and upon his return to Portugal his doctors informed him that his first vertebra had been severely damaged. The injury required immediate surgery that the doctors gave him just a 10% chance of surviving. After three more operations and intensive physiotherapy treatment, he was finally able to return to the sport in 2015. (, 03 Apr 2016)
Sporting philosophy / motto
"Never give up." (Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)
To compete at the 2020 Paralympic Games in Tokyo. (, 03 Nov 2020)
He has paraplegia as a result of injuries he sustained in a car accident at age two. (Facebook page, 19 Jul 2018;, 10 Jun 2017; Athlete, 06 Nov 2019)
Other information
He is the subject of 'Nunca Desistas' [Never Give Up], a documentary that tells the story of his life. (, 16 May 2019)


Unit Date Rank
IPC Athletics World Championships Assen 2006 (Assen, Netherlands)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 100 m T52 Heat 1 5
Men's 200 m T52 Heat 2 9999
IPC Swimming World Championships Eindhoven 2010 (Eindhoven, Netherlands)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 100 m Freestyle S3 Heat 1 6
Men's 200 m Freestyle S3 Heat 1 5
Men's 50 m Backstroke S3 Heat 2 7
World Para Athletics Championships London 2017 (London, Great Britain)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 100 m T51 Final 1 2017-07-21 8