Diabetes is not necessarily the end of the road for an athlete. In fact, it could be the beginning of great achievements if properly managed.
Several athletes – swimmers, football players, cyclists etc.- have proven that managing diabetes as an athlete is possible.
Here are just 15 athletes with diabetes that have had successful careers despite having the condition:
Gary Hall, Jr. – Swimming – United States
For Gary, Swimming was a family sport. Following the footsteps of his father and grandfather, he represented the US in 1996 at the Olympics where he claimed 2 silver medals.
Shortly after, Gary was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes.
Though shocking, he went on to achieve an impressive feat in his career. He continued working out for up to 8 hours daily, while checking his blood sugar level at intervals.
He was crowned the world’s fastest swimmer in the 2000 Olympic games but he didn’t stop there. He impressed the world even further by acquiring 10 Olympic medals by the year 2008.
Hall retired from competitive swimming in the year 2008, and is now a member of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JRDF).
Ben Coker – Football (Soccer) – England
Ben Coker is an athlete who learned to manage diabetes during his football career. He currently plays for the League One club Southend United and has quite a number of achievements under his belt.
Coker was only 15 when he was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. His first symptoms experienced were frequent thirst and frequent urination.
Sometime in 2018 while playing for Southend against Sunderland, he suffered a knee injury which prevented him from playing any more game in that season. Coker came back fully into the game in 2019 when he signed for Lincoln City.
Coker successfully learnt to manage his blood sugar levels quickly. While playing footbal