This is Stuart Weir’s piece on the lesser known Adams’sister, Lisa, who took the T37 shot put competition on November 9. Lisa Adams won the T37 shot put in a world record of 14.80m.
Adams wins women’s shot put
The above headline will shock no one. It has been used many times as New Zealand’s Valerie Adams – sorry Dame Valerie Adams – won her two Olympic, four World Championship, four Indoor World Championship and three Commonwealth Games gold medals. However, this is the World Para Athletics Championship and it is Lisa Adams, Valerie’s younger sister that the headline refers to.
Adams, who has cerebral palsy, threw 14.80m in the F37 class to win her first global title with a new world record throw, having only taken up the sport two years ago.
She said afterwards: “I have been training maybe for year and a half and this is my international debut. I feel relieved and also really happy. There is more confidence after this event. I didn’t come in with breaking a world record as a goal, so that’s a bonus.”
She also acknowledged the help of her sister: Valerie’s role in Lisa life is more than just being a sister. “My sister knows a lot about shot put, we are really good at keeping things professional in the gym. It is a professional relationship of athlete-coach and then she’s my sister,”
Lisa had already made headlines by becoming the first female to participate in a men’s rugby team at at international championship. The switch from rugby to athletics, however, has enhanced her reputation and responsibilities.
“It’s quite different. In individual sports, you have to be more disciplined and you have to take everything by yourself. Physically it has been hard as well, but really rewarding,” says Lisa, who had her family rooting for her from the stands. “
When taking up shot put was suggested to her, she told BBC, she thought “why not? because I’m always up for trying new sports, and we went from there.
It was really hard, I didn’t know what I was doing. I told them that if I was rubbish, they had to tell me and then I would go back to my old life. Now, it’s starting a sporting career for me. Our next goal is the Tokyo Paralympics.”
“Valerie’s been there, done that, she’s amazing in her own field and she’s done the world champion thing, so she knows everything I am feeling. It’s amazing to be able to share that and talk about how we’re feeling. I know she’s really proud of me. At my age now , I’ve created dreams and goals that I want to follow, and I want him to be able to do the same and be able to see that I am working hard and that it is paying off.”