It took Beth Munro just 18 months to go from trying taekwondo for the first time to winning silver at the Paralympic Games in Tokyo – and now at the Para Sport Festival in Swansea (1-7 August) the elite multi-medal winning athlete hopes that others will follow in her flying side kick footsteps and come and give para sports a go!

As a very good netball player, Beth was keen to try other sports and with that aim attended a Disability Sport Wales-organised insport Series event in North Wales.

With no expectations or any real idea what to expect, the GO TRI event introduced Beth to several sports. She took a shine to javelin and moved to Cardiff to train.

It was there that Anthony Hughes MBE, Disability Sport Wales’ National Performance Manager, saw Beth’s strength and movement and her martial arts potential – and suggested she tried taekwondo.

Gentle and kind by nature, you couldn’t find someone less aggressive than Beth – but Anthony was right as Beth instinctively took to taekwondo, much to her surprise!

Her meteoric rise from mental health worker to Paralympian had begun.

Beth won gold in her very first international competition, the 2021 European Taekwondo Olympic Qualification tournament in Bulgaria, which secured her a Team GB place at the Paralympic Games in Tokyo.

It was a dream Paralympic Games debut, as Beth won silver in the 58kg K44 category – the UK’s first taekwondo Paralympic medal!

Success has continued in 2022, with Beth winning gold at both the European Championships in Manchester and silver at the inaugural Para Taekwondo Grand Prix in Rome.

Beth Munro teaching children Taekwondo exercises

Beth, who has a Master's Degree in Psychology, has put her clinical psychology career on hold to follow her sporting dreams and is now targeting gold at the 2024 Paralympic Games in Paris.

“Had you said before October 2019 that I would even go to the 2021 Paralympic Games, let alone win silver, then I'd have said ‘no, not a chance, that's not for me’,” says Beth.

“It was on a bucket list maybe under the heading ‘impossible’ because I never thought it achievable, honestly. 

“But if you have a dream and the opportunity is there, grasp it with both hands – grasp it with one hand, grasp it with however many limbs you have, but grasp it, because I did and look where it’s taken me!

“I’m very proud to support the Para Sport Festival as a role model. 

“I want young people to believe that they have the ability, not the disability, to do well in these sports.

“Any disabled individual just needs to take the opportunity and think that dreams are possible, because I am living proof that they are.”

About the Para Sport Festival (1-7 August)

The week-long Para Sport Festival begins with an insport Series event on Monday 1 August at the Swansea Bay Sports Park (Swansea University, Sketty Lane, Swansea, SA2 8QB) – which will provide grassroots and initial participation opportunities for children, young people and adults. 

The format of the insport Series event will enable participants, coaches and a wider network of volunteers to expand their experiences, access sports that they may not have considered as available or accessible, and make connections with local clubs providing great, sustainable opportunities within an inclusive environment.

Over 20 sports will be available for participants to participate in, from athletics to wheelchair rugby, all delivered by local insport Clubs and National Governing Bodies of Sport. These opportunities all link to a local pathway into established local inclusive clubs (insport Clubs) from across south-west Wales.

The Para Sport Festival is free to access and information and registration details are available at: parasportfestival.co.uk

For more information, please contact Paul Evans DSW Communications Officer on: paul@lloydbell.co.uk / 07710 743167

About the Para Sport Festival (1-7 August)

The week-long Para Sport Festival begins with an insport Series event on Monday 1 August at the Swansea Bay Sports Park (Swansea University, Sketty Lane, Swansea, SA2 8QB) – which will provide grassroots and initial participation opportunities for children, young people and adults. 

The format of the insport Series event will enable participants, coaches and a wider network of volunteers to expand their experiences, access sports that they may not have considered as available or accessible, and make connections with local clubs providing great, sustainable opportunities within an inclusive environment.

Over 20 sports will be available for participants to participate in, from athletics to wheelchair rugby, all delivered by local insport Clubs and National Governing Bodies of Sport. These opportunities all link to a local pathway into established local inclusive clubs (insport Clubs) from across south-west Wales.

The Para Sport Festival is free to access and information and registration details are available at: parasportfestival.co.uk

For more information, please contact Paul Evans DSW Communications Officer on: paul@lloydbell.co.uk / 07710 743167


Topics in this article:
insport SeriesinsportTaekwondo

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