Former paralympian pursues welfare improvement for the disabled
26th December 2020
Feature: Former paralympian pursues welfare improvement for the disabled
After retiring from China's national women's sitting volleyball team, Yang Yanling relaunched her career in the welfare services for people with disabilities.
The 40-year-old, three-time Paralympic gold winner (2004, 2008 and 2012), chose to leave the Olympic court after London Paralympics and returned to her hometown in Jiayuguan City, northwest China's Gansu Province.
Born with congenital hip dislocation, Yang was a sensitive and introverted child.
"I was aware of my own 'difference' since I was young, as I could not walk or run like others. It was hard for me to face my physical defect. I was so anxious in every PE class and avoided communicating with classmates," recalled Yang.
Later, by chance, she was introduced to join the provincial women's sitting volleyball team in Gansu in 2001, composed of athletes with amputations, cerebral palsy, spinal cord injuries and other physical disabilities.