Amazing determination: from workplace injury victim to world ranked triathlete

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The grit and determination shown by my client Clint Pickin is one example of the extraordinary resilience people can show after suffering injury.

Clint was injured in March 2014 on a dairy farm which led to his right leg being amputated below the knee. Clint was 25 years of age at the time. Keen to get ahead in life, the dairy position was one he did on top of his full-time position in the timber industry. The loss of his leg meant that he could not sustain a return to manual labour. Whilst attempting to return to work Clint suffered many setbacks. A number of times ingrown hairs on his stump lead to significant wounds and an inability to wear his prosthesis for up to 3 weeks at a time. Fortunately, Clint had also worked as a disability support worker and he managed to obtain regular employment in this field as he could not continue working in roles where he was required to stand up for long periods due to the pain this caused.

Clint started cycling for fitness and then tried to return to running. Although he found running difficult and found that he could not manage long distances he started to think about triathlons after meeting some other amputees who were doing Ironman events and after his brother challenged him to a bike race which Clint won. The triathlon course includes a 750-metre swim, 20-kilometre bike ride and 5-kilometre run.

Amazingly having started doing triathlons less than 2 years ago Clint now has a goal to complete in the 2020 Paralympics in Tokyo. He has already been longlisted for Tokyo. I have no doubt given Clint’s ability to set himself rehabilitation goals in the past, his incredible willpower and his commitment to training that his goal will become a reality.

Recently Clint has secured a sports scholarship to attend the Australian Capital Territory Academy of Sport in Canberra. Clint has been able to achieve incredible success whilst juggling his training around work commitments including a podium finish when he competed in Canada earlier in the year. Currently ranked 12th in the World I cannot wait to see what Clint can achieve as a full-time athlete.

It’s an honour for me to get to know my clients, the struggles that go on behind the scenes whilst they try to get on with their lives despite suffering injury.  The process is often long and frustrating for clients who are already going through the turmoil of readjusting to life with an injury. It’s the grit and determination of these clients who inspire me to keep fighting for client’s rights and to ease their burden by taking care of the compensation part of their claim so they can focus on their health and rehabilitation.

SLM Law client Clint Pickin pictured with SLM Law personal injury lawyer Ann Cunningham.

SLM Law client Clint Pickin pictured with SLM Law personal injury lawyer Ann Cunningham.

By Ann Cunningham