Quick Facts

Physical Impairment – Right below knee limb loss
How acquired
Amputation as a result of fibula deficiency
Date of Birth
July 14, 1998
Engadine, NSW
School Student
Started Competing
First Competed for Australia

Her parents

Career Highlights

Silver in the long jump at the 2014 Sainsbury Glasgow International Games

Greatest Moment

Representing Australia for the first time at the 2014 Sainsbury Glasgow International Games


Born without her fibula and a small foot, Sarah Walsh was just 18-months old when her parents made the decision to have her left leg amputated. Within days of her operation, she showed the tell tale signs of a Paralympic athlete in the making – running on her new prosthetic leg within a week of being fitted.

While Sarah was always an active kid, having participated in both swimming and gymnastics, she did not discover Para-sport until the age of nine, before her first school athletics carnival. With her PE teacher noticing that her speeds were comparable to those of her able-bodied classmates, Sarah was encouraged to enter the Zone Athletics Carnival, and it was then that she became hooked on the thrill of racing.

The same year, Sarah ran at the 2007 NSW State Championships and was selected for the national team for the first time. Over the next few years, the Sydney-sider’s passion for sprinting further developed and when she received her first running blade, she made a promise to herself that she would become the best athlete she could be. Since then, she has won the Australian long jump title or her age group and she’s broken Australian records in both the 100m and 200m.

With a wealth of junior titles to her name, it was no surprise when in 2014 Sarah made her debut for Australia at the Sainsbury Glasgow International Games. Sarah went on to win silver in the T44 long jump, falling short of gold behind a Paralympian with years of experience on her.

As the only Australian athlete invited to compete against a group of athletes from great Britain, Scotland and America, she says the experience was a true “pinch-myself moment” and the excitement of wearing green and gold has been a true motivator in training for the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games.

Coached by Brett Robinson, Sarah trains six days a week, which includes three track sessions, two home-gym sessions and a pool session where she either swims or does water running. Balancing her school studies, Sarah trains every day after school and also plays wheelchair basketball with the Sutherland Wheelie Sharks. She hopes to one day represent Australia in wheelchair basketball and win Paralympic medals in both sports.

The oldest of three sisters, Sarah says her parents have been instrumental to her success as they’ve supported her and encouraged her to pursue her dreams. With both her parents having been born in Ireland, she enjoys travelling to their homeland to visit her grandparents and cousins, and looks forward to seeing them on family holidays.

Outside of athletics and wheelchair basketball, Sarah is also a keen surfer, for which she uses a special waterproof leg. She has been surfing longer than she has been running, and loves to surf whenever she travels. She hopes to add Rio to her list of countries in which she has surfed.

Sports & Disciplines

  • Sport: Athletics Disciplines: Long Jump Classification: F44