Rising Para-snowboard star Alex Handley began his career in sport as an Australian representative water skier but after paralysing his arm in a high-speed crash, he is now on the verge of representing his country at the Paralympic Games.

Alex was 21 when he broke his neck and lost most of the movement in his right arm after falling from a water ski while travelling at 150km/h. Following a delay in rehabilitation due to his neck injury, he spent the next three years learning how to use his left hand and arm as his dominant side, including relearning how to write.

An experienced skier and snowboarder, it wasn’t long before Alex found his pathway into Para-sport. He’d seen Para-snowboard on YouTube in the years prior to his accident, and in 2016 he took his interest a step further by attending a Paralympics Australia Futures Camp in Perisher, NSW, where he …

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Date of birth
27 April 1991
Physical Impairment – Right arm nerve damage
How acquired
Waterskiing accident
Yarra Glen, VIC
Athlete and plumber
Started competing
First competed for Australia
Sport career highlights

Competing at the 2017 IPC Snowboard World Cup in Lake Tahoe, USA

Greatest sporting moments

Placing fourth at the Water Ski World Championships

Heroes/role models

Scotty James


  • Sport: Para-snowboard Discipline: Banked Slalom Classification: SB-UL
  • Sport: Para-snowboard Discipline: Snowboard Cross Classification: SB-UL

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