Thursday, August 30, 2012

CrossFitting with Friedreich's Ataxia - Kyle Bryant

Kyle Bryant joined CrossFit King of Prussia in early April this year and right away caught my attention. Not because he came in supported by a walker, nor subsequent times when he rolled in on his wheelchair, but because of his good-natured smile and incredible work ethic. As a coach, I always hope that people coming through our doors will be the positive, upbeat personalities that CrossFit typically attracts. Kyle fit this role to a T. Although I was not his coach for the intro workout he did, I remember Kyle introducing himself to me after he was done working out and I was finishing up coaching a class. A strong handshake and quick smile later, I knew Kyle would be a valuable asset to the KoP community. 

Mike Donofrio of CrossFit Generation documented Kyle's journey with Friedreich's Ataxia in the below video. As you'll learn in the video, FA is a fairly rare disease that breaks down muscle mass, including the heart. Kyle is a spokesperson for the Friedreich's Ataxia Research Alliance (FARA) and has biked across the country to raise awareness. The hope is that this video will also continue to raise awareness of FA and how it affects people. As an example of Kyle's positive nature, after he was finished with the CrossFit for Hope workout, he exclaimed, "That was definitely the gnarliest workout I've ever done!" 
Kyle, post CF for Hope workout - GNARLY!

The video is featured on the CrossFit Journal website, but it can also be found on CrossFit's Youtube channel. I love the fact that OG Miranda Oldroyd (who recently went through a severe car crash) left this comment on the CF Journal:
"I am just sitting here bawling! This is so inspirational! Kyle, thank you SO MUCH for being so fearless and refusing to give up in your own life. This needs to be shown A LOT...there are too many people out there making excuses!" - Miranda O.

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