28863-Sam Tait photo

Sam Tait

Alpine Skiing


Impairment information

Type of Impairment
Spinal Cord Injuries
Origin of Impairment

Further personal information

Thredbo, ACT, AUS
Higher education
Draughting - Granville TAFE College: Australia

Sport specific information

When and where did you begin this sport?
He was a keen skier prior to his accident in 2013. He took up Para skiing four months after the accident in Thredbo, NSW, Australia, and began skiing more regularly in 2014 when his parents bought a ski lodge in Perisher Valley, NSW, Australia. "I needed something to take my mind off my accident and I needed to set a goal in my life to help me move on and accept what had happened. I decided early on that I was going to ski again. I saw videos of sit-skiers on YouTube when I was in hospital and I said to my parents, 'I'm going to do that. I'm going to go to the Paralympics'."
Why this sport?
"I tell everyone I meet, if you get the chance to jump in a sit-ski, definitely give it a go. I wouldn't go back to stand-up skiing now that I've tried it. You are a lot closer to the ground, so you feel the hill more. The adrenaline when you are skiing a downhill run and the emotions when you finish are crazy. I've clocked speeds up to 120 kilometres per hour. And when you're on snow, it doesn't feel like you're disabled."
Club / Team
New South Wales Institute of Sport [NSWIS]: Australia
Training Regime
He trains in Perisher, NSW, Australia.

International debut

Competing for
Landgraaf, NED

General interest

Memorable sporting achievement
Competing at the 2018 Paralympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang, and finishing sixth in the downhill sitting event at the 2019 World Championships. (, 31 Jan 2019)
Hero / Idol
Australian wheelchair racer Kurt Fearnley. (, 25 Aug 2019; Athlete, 10 Feb 2018)
He suffered a partial dislocation of his left shoulder in 2016. (IPC, 10 Feb 2018)
Sporting philosophy / motto
"Do today what others won't, so tomorrow you can do what others can't." (, 31 Jan 2019)
Other sports
He has achieved a top 10 ranking in the adaptive division of the International CrossFit Games. (, 31 Jan 2017)
To win gold at the 2022 Paralympic Winter Games in Beijing, to win a world championship title, and to win the Crystal Globe for the downhill event. (, 31 Jan 2019, 15 Mar 2020)
He has paraplegia as the result of a motorcycle accident in 2013 in Wollongong, NSW, Australia. "I was riding with three of my mates in the afternoon. I don't remember everything, but I've been told we were riding around a corner and the bike just slid out. I hit a car, and was airlifted to hospital in Sydney. The night that it happened, the doctors knew straight away that I wasn't going to walk again." (Athlete, 20 Jun 2016;, 20 Nov 2014; YouTube, 02 Jul 2014)
Other information
In October 2020 he climbed Australia's Mount Kosciuszko in New South Wales. Taking seven hours to cover the 16-kilometre route and accompanied by a team of six people, he climbed using a combination of his sit-ski, handcycle, and sometimes just his arms. "Last year [speaking in 2020] I was towed up to the top of Mount Kosciuszko with a few mates, so I didn't do much work at all and I didn't really have that sense of accomplishment. When we were halfway through that hike, a conversation came up about climbing it solo. Physically, it was a challenge for me to do something different and see how far I could go. There was a time I was thinking, 'Have we bitten off more than we can chew?' My body was in all sorts of pain but we had come this far, we're not going to give up now. We just pushed through." (, 05 May 2021;, 08 Dec 2020;, 09 Nov 2020)

He has undertaken an apprenticeship as an electrician in Australia. (ParaQuad NSW YouTube channel, 10 Jul 2019; Facebook profile, 28 Sep 2017)

He has served as an ambassador for Paraplegic and Quadriplegic Association of New South Wales [ParaQuad] in Australia. He has also given motivational talks to injured workers through Insurance and Care New South Wales. "I want to show everyone that living with a disability doesn't disable you. For me, my life is so full, and I wouldn't have it any other way." (, 24 Feb 2021;, 25 Aug 2019; ParaQuad NSW YouTube channel, 10 Jul 2019;, 13 Aug 2018)


Unit Date Rank
Pyeongchang 2018 Paralympic Winter Games (Pyeongchang, South Korea)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's Downhill Sitting Final 2018-03-10 11
Men's Super-G Sitting Final 2018-03-11 9999
Men's Super Combined Sitting Final 2018-03-13 9999
Men's Giant Slalom Sitting Final 2018-03-14 17
Men's Slalom Sitting Final 2018-03-17 9999
Kranjska Gora/Sella Nevea 2019 World Para Alpine Skiing Championships (Kranjska Gora/Sella Nevea, Slovenia)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's Giant Slalom Sitting Race 1 2019-01-21 10
Men's Downhill Sitting Race 1 2019-01-30 6
Men's Super-Combined Sitting Race 1 2019-01-31 9999
Men's Super-G Sitting Race 1 (from SC) 2019-01-31 9999