A 42 year old amputee who can only walk 20 minutes at a time has climbed three of the tallest mountains in England and it only took him 27 hours!
Interestingly, Ben Lovell, a former truck worker, had never climbed a mountain before his amputation. In 2017, he had his right leg removed due to a blood clot. After the amputation he suffered from depression and anxiety, but changed his life and now goes to the gym up to six times a week. In addition, he opened a training camp and a holiday retreat in Tenerife, called Amp Camp, to help other amputees adjust to the difficulties he has experienced.
Lovell has been on a sponsored 13-mile walk around a lake on crutches and a 15,000-foot parachute jump in recent years.
During the climb, Lovell had to stop every 20 minutes due to the pressure on his leg to remove his prosthesis and rest before coming back up again, going about a mile each time. He climbed the Lake District Helvellyn in just seven hours, Scafell in nine hours and Scafell Pike in 11 hours.
It’s never about how long it takes me; it’s just a matter of doing it. Helvellyn was really difficult and quite scary because we lost the trail and ended up climbing on the peak side. I was in a lot of pain, but it’s a mental thing, and you just have to get over it.
He pointed out the challenge of walking on the wet and muddy boggy ground: “It puts such a strain on your other joints and your other leg, and using crutches, which I have to do, is really hard on your back and your shoulders. “
The father of two has raised over £ 14,000 (approximately US $ 19,000) to pay children with prostheses to join AmpCamp Kids. Lovell founded AmpCamp so that other amputees could have a place to heal, exercise, feel comfortable and relax.
With this vacation, we just want to give people a place to go where they can feel safe and confident, and where they can relax without the stigma, and if you need to relax a bit, everyone gets it.
At Amp Camp, other amputees will have gone through the same thing; they can understand and help each other. Amp Camp also focuses on building self-confidence by challenging guests to exercise or yoga. However, for those who don’t feel like working out, they can just relax by the pool.
Another inspiring amputee is Manami Ito from Japan, who plays the violin with one arm! She has always had a passion for the violin, but in 2004, at the age of 20, she was involved in a car accident and lost her right arm. Similar to Lovell, becoming an amputee plunged Manami into depression. She couldn’t do what she loved to do, play the violin. For over a year, she didn’t even want to leave her house, until one day her mother said to her: “Please play the violin for me again one day”.
It inspired Manami and gave him a goal. First, she went back to school and became Japan’s first amputee nurse. Then, she decided to participate in the Paralympic Games as a swimmer. At the 2008 Beijing Paralympic Games, she finished 4th in the 100m breaststroke and 8th at the London 2012 Games.
In 2017, Manami got a lightweight prosthetic arm with a specially designed prosthetic bow, allowing him to take up the violin again. In 2019, she secured a spot on “The World’s Best”, a talent show hosted by James Cordon in Hollywood, California. Manami called herself “The Miracle Violinist” and brought tears to the eyes of many when she started performing.