Month: March 2017

Adapted Cycling in Forth Valley

Forth Valley Disability Sport’s new Get Out Get Active (GOGA) project held their first adapted cycling course this week.

Six volunteers attended a full fun day training course held at the Falkirk Stadium on Monday 27th March, in partnership with Cycling Scotland and Blazing Saddles. This was a great course looking at the various adaptive bikes, how to support individuals to learn to ride and furthermore how to lead a cycle on the correct paths.

We all got the chance to cycle through the Helix Park, switching bikes as we went, and enjoyed the lovely sunshine along the way. Both Graham Harvey and Eva Finlayson from FVDS were on this course. Thank you to everyone involved.

Our volunteers can now support our GOGA project by leading led cycles throughout our community. We hope to provide this training again in the future, if you’d like to get involved then please get in touch:

SDS Welcomes New Branch Office Bearers

Scottish Disability Sport would like to welcome the new office bearers in Grampian Disability Sport and South Lanarkshire Disability Sport branches. Grampian Disability Sport appointed a new Chairperson, Len Ironside, in December 2016 after long serving Chair, Pauline Stirling stood down. Len is doing a great job as chair so far and we are delighted that Pauline is still an active member of the Grampian Disability Sport committee.

This month, South Lanarkshire Disability Sport welcome new Chairperson Forbes Dunlop and Vice Chairperson, David Condie. The previous Chairperson, Millar Stoddard will also remain an active member of the committee after many years in the role.

Huge thanks must go to both Pauline Stirling in Grampian and Millar Stoddart in South Lanarkshire for all their hard work, support, and dedication over many years.

All three new members bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to both branches and Scottish Disability look forward to working with you all.

Walking Football Comes to Fife thanks to GOGA

As part of the GOGA in Fife programme (Go Out and Get Active) supported by Spirit of 2012, Disability Sport Fife (DSF) is launching the first in a series of new football initiatives to encourage non active people to be active.

Walking Football is being introduced to the ever increasing list of weekly DSF sessions. DSF hopes to encourage older adults with additional support needs who are keen on football but can no longer cope with football as we know it currently; juniors who may feel more at home walking as opposed to running; participants with additional support needs who require a buddy for sports.

Walking football is becoming more popular by the day across the country. DSF is joining forces once again with partners Active Fife Football Development and the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust. Dave Costello from the Active Fife Scottish FA Football coaching team will lead the session.

Thurs 20 April – end of June – 11.00 – 12.00 hrs
Venue: Beacon Leisure Centre, Burntisland.
Cost: £3.60 per session (participants must register with Norma Buchanan in the first instance on a DSF form). Participants pay weekly at reception.
Coach Dave Costello

This will be the first occasion that DSF has organised a session at the Beacon. If the session blossoms then there are plans to move indoors to Kirkcaldy Leisure Centre over the winter. Walking football will appeal to participants of all levels of ability.

Richard Brickley MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

2017 Fife Football Academy Programme Finalised

The 2017 Fife Performance Football Academy organised by Disability Sport Fife (DSF), in conjunction with the Active Fife Scottish FA Football Development Officers, is scheduled to start late April, the week schools return from Easter holidays.

This will be the third year that pupils with additional support needs are offered quality coaching within school time from Scottish FA popular coach Dave Costello. Sessions will be provided within school facilities courtesy of the Active Fife Football Development Officers, key partners of DSF. Five Secondary schools are signed up for the programme which has had a major impact on the development of the Fife7s League.

Tues 25 April – 16 May
Madras College – 9.05-11.05
Contact Stuart Munn

Tues 25 April – 16 May
Woodmill HS – 12.45-13.30
Contact – Jakki O’Neill

Wed 26 April – 17 May
Glenrothes HS – 8.45-10.30
Contact – Alastair Terris

Wed 26 April – 17 May
Lochgelly HS – 13.45-15.15
Contact Brian Sim

Thurs 27 April – 18 May
Balwearie HS – 14.15 – 15.15
Contact – Pamela Robson

When the the Fife Football Academy programme comes to an end, DSF will join forces with Dunfermline Tennis Club for the Fife Tennis Academy programme for players with additional support needs.

Richard Brickley MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

Stefan running towards finishing line

YPSP Blog – Stefan Hoggan


Retirement – it’s a strange word to use when you are only 24 years old, but when you have been in sport for 20 years it starts to make more sense.

At the end of 2016 I retired from professional sport after 18 years as a swimmer and two years as a triathlete. I’ve had my ups and downs but one thing that stayed constant was the support from my family, friends, Disability Sport Fife and of course Scottish Disability Sport. They were my rock and I can’t thank them enough for the support that they have given me.  They supported me when I missed selection to the Glasgow Commonwealth Games by 0.02 of a second, something that will always be the biggest disappointment in my sporting career – but also my greatest achievement. It sounds strange, doesn’t it, that something that brought me so much heartache and disappointment can also be my proudest moment in my swimming career, but it really was.

After my swimming career finished in October 2014, I decided I wanted a change of direction. Everyone supported me in my jump to triathlon, on my move south of the border and on my journey to the international stage of triathlon and competing for Great Britain, travelling around the world to places such as Italy, France and the USA. Now, you may think that this all sounds very glamorous and amazing getting to race around the world – which yes of course it was – but for a lot of the time in between the races and when I was back in Loughborough I was very down, during the long lonely days 300 miles from home when I just wanted to be with my friends and my family at home in Fife. There is no place like home. A cheesy saying I know, but in my case it’s true. They helped me get through those down times by visiting me, by FaceTiming me and by always being there when I needed to talk, it meant the world. I also came out as gay at the beginning of 2016, when again my family and friends were hugely supportive.

I am now officially retired from competitive sport, but new doors are opening for me all the time because of sport. I have recently started coaching the Orcas squad at Carnegie Swimming Club and later in the year I am going to be running the Edinburgh Marathon in aid of Cash For Kids Scotland. I have had huge support from Carnegie Swimming Club and Disability Sport Fife in reaching my target of being a swimming coach and I look forward to the challenges ahead.

So really the point I am trying to make in this wee blog is that no matter how successful or unsuccessful you are in sport, the people that help you along the way really matter. Your family, your friends, the organisations, the charities, whoever it is that helps you get to where you want to be, appreciate them and be thankful for them because they are what you remember when you retire.

Fife Athlete Receives Support from Local Company

Jonny Brown from Coaltown of Wemyss has cerebral palsy and is a recent convert to wheelchair racing. Jonny competes in the T33 class. Support from Scottish Disability Sport enabled Disability Sport Fife (DSF) to access a racing chair for Jonny and Scottish Athletics and British Athletics provided essential expertise and advice on posture, positioning and technique.

Jonny has always been a keen thrower (discus and shot) and with support from his coach and father David, he has made steady progress. Some years ago REMAP built throwing frames for DSF which Jonny has taken full advantage of, with support from the Fife Sports and Leisure Trust. Inspired by Paralympian Sammi Kinghorn and others, Jonny is thriving on being part of the ever growing DSF wheelchair racing squad led by DSF coach Pamela Robson. Jonny is also a frequent visitor to the gym at the Michael Woods Sports and Leisure Centre.

Jonny has recently had difficulty with the positioning of his feet which has had an impact on the power he can generate though his arms. Balance and stability are critical in wheelchair racing and a local Fife company has come to the rescue. Following a meeting with engineers, John Penman and Keith Page of local steel fabricators, Fife Fabrication Ltd. (Fifab), an offer of assistance was immediately forthcoming. John and Keith have now designed and manufactured bespoke footplates which not only offer increased stability but confidence and comfort.

DSF is proud of the range of partners it can call upon in times of challenge and in this instance it is Fifab that has come to the rescue. Jonny is in a much better position now to meet his training commitments and challenge for PBs in the season ahead. Many thanks John and Keith for your time and expertise. A proud coach and athlete are looking forward to forthcoming competitions with renewed confidence and focus.

Richard Brickley MBE
President, Disability Sport Fife

Dundee Dragons Logo

Craigie CSH Supports Thriving Wheelchair Basketballer

A partnership between Scottish Disability Sport and Craigie Community Sports Hub has seen support for thriving Craigie athlete, Rhys Colliar. Rhys plays wheelchair basketball for local club Dundee Dragons Wheelchair Sports Club.

The 15 year old Craigie High School student has started additional strength and conditioning sessions at Craigie Community Sports Hub, who have kindly offered their facility to him so that he can continue to develop as an athlete.

Rhys was recently named Athlete with a Disability of the Year at the Dundee Sports Awards in recognition of his hard work and training throughout 2016.

Rhys is being supported by David Tolland, a third year Sport & Exercise Science student at Abertay University. David has planned and is implementing a bespoke, engaging training programme with Rhys every week.

Craigie CSH chairperson Steven Maloney commented: “Craigie CSH is centered around community needs and it is pleasure to support the development of Rhys, a member of the community.  We wish Rhys all the best in his aspirations as an athlete.”

Many thanks to Craigie Community Sports Hub and David Tolland for their continued support.

2016 Summer Camp group photo

2017 Summer Sports Camp

Wednesday 5th July 2017 — Fri 7th July 2017

Inverclyde Centre, Largs

Scottish Disability Sports is delighted to be co-ordinating the seventeenth annual Summer Sports Camp for young people with a physical disability and or sensory impairment. We are again fortunate to be supported by long-term partners Better Breaks, Celtic FC Foundation and sportscotland. The camp will include a comprehensive selection of sport and physical activity along with an evening social programme. The camp introduces children to a range of sport and physical activity and empowers them to become more independent and responsible whilst increasing their confidence alongside an opportunity to participate in adapted, inclusive sport with their peers.

Please click here for the flyer

For further information and the Application Form please click here or alternatively please contact Mark Gaffney, Opportunities & Events Manager, on 0131 625 4417 or



















Orianne Slater with her award

Aberdeen Gymnast Retains Scottish and British Titles

Orianne Slater, a 15 year old disability gymnast with COAG (City of Aberdeen Gymnastics Club), is back and what a month this has been…!!! She competed at the 2017 Scottish Artistic Championships on March 4th-5th (Bells Sport Centre in Perth) and at the 2017 Gymnastics British Championships on March 24th-26th (Echo Arena in Liverpool).

Orianne competed in the Disability category in a Masters style event, where Junior and Senior gymnasts of the

Orianne Slater balancing on the beam
© PSB Photography

same gender compete against each other (some of the competitors were over 20 yrs old).

Having suffered knee and hip pains related to her condition (Perthes’ disease) for the past 2 months, she hadn’t been able to practice her routines as much as usual and her performance was consequently affected. However, her performance was strong and her achievements on individual apparatus were of a good standard!


  • At the Scottish Championships, Orianne retained her 2016 titles of Champion on Floor and Vault, and got Silver on Asymmetric Bars, and Bronze on Balance Beam.
  • At the British Championships, Orianne again retained her 2016 title of Champion on Asymmetric Bars and added Silver on Floor, and Bronze on Vault.

Orianne’s parents especially wish to thank to her coach, Lorna Presly, for being so flexible in adapting training, routines and expectations.

Group photo of Balwearie High School pupils

Balwearie HS and Lochgelly HS Share Honours in Fife

The seventh year of the Disability Sport Fife (DSF) 7s Football League for players with additional support needs has come to an end with Balwearie HS players winning the S3-S6 competition for the fifth year in succession and Lochgelly HS players winning the junior section (S1/S2) for the first time outright. In 2016 the junior title was shared between Lochgelly HS and Balwearie HS. Balwearie HS and Lochgelly HS seniors will be invited to represent Fife at the Scottish 7s Finals organised by the Scottish FA and Scottish Disability Sport.

The 2017 senior final was the most closely contested to date with only one goal separating Balwearie HS and Lochgelly HS in the deciding match of Series 3 of the 7s League. Balwearie HS finished with 15 points and Lochgelly HS 13 points. It could not have been closer. Madras College made impressive strides forward this year and finished in third place. Shakeel Ul Haq (Lochgelly HS) finished as top scorer with 9 goals and Alex Evans (Balwearie HS) second with 5 goals.

The 2017 junior League was even closer and yet again the players from Madras College in St Andrews had their most successful season to date. In Series 1 Madras College and Lochgelly HS finished with 5 points each. In Series 2 Balwearie HS were absent and Lochgelly HS took full advantage with two wins over Madras College. Series 3 belonged totally to Madras College with wins over leaders Lochgelly HS (1-0) and Balwearie HS (2-0). However maximum points were not enough in Series 3 for Madras College as they lost out 13-14 to Lochgelly HS who won the junior title on their own for the first time. Brodie Adam from Lochgelly HS was top scorer with 9 goals and Callum Nicoll Madras College runner up with 7 goals.

DSF is indebted to the Scottish FA for financially supporting the 7s League since its inception and for providing medals and trophies. DSF is also grateful to Derek Lowe, Andrew McGachan, Alistair Watt, Terry Ormiston and Lee Pirie of the Fife Referees Association for officiating at all League matches. The Rector, staff and pupils of Kirkcaldy HS for the seventh year in succession provided facilities for the Fife 7s League and the Scottish FA Football Development Officers within Active Fife were always available to offer support, advice and encouragement. DSF and the Scottish FA Football Development Officers in Fife now move forward for the second year with the Fife Performance Football Academy that offers quality coaching to players with additional support needs in Fife.

Richard Brickley MBE – President Disability Sport Fife