03:56 GMT10 July 2020
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    A wheelchair-bound Iranian managed to defy his ailment and, against all odds, became an accomplished diver.

    Even though his muscular dystrophy has effectively confined him to a wheelchair, Saeid Zaroori never gave up on life. But even as he became a successful journalist, translator and English teacher, the strong-willed Iranian’s free spirit hungered for more.

    And eventually, together with a group of young like-minded individuals, he embarked on a journey into the world of extreme sports.

    • Saeid Zaroori
      Saeid Zaroori
      © Photo : Saeid Zaroori
    • Saeid Zaroori
      Saeid Zaroori
      © Photo : Saeid Zaroori
    • Saeid Zaroori
      Saeid Zaroori
      © Photo : Saeid Zaroori
    • Saeid Zaroori
      Saeid Zaroori
      © Photo : Saeid Zaroori
    • Saeid Zaroori
      Saeid Zaroori
      © Photo : Saeid Zaroori
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    © Photo : Saeid Zaroori
    Saeid Zaroori

    As Zaroori told Sputnik Persian, his first step was a flight on an ultralight aircraft. Soon after he decided to try something different and travelled to the Kish Island to try his hand at diving.

    "After that me and the guys decided to go to Kish Island and try our hand at diving. During my first trip to Kish, when I was a student, I failed to do so – the weather and water temperature weren’t right for diving. Later, when I became financially independent, I bought an electric wheelchair which allowed me to move without assistance and made it easier to go to Kish. And so I finally decided to take a dive! Since then my life has never been the same, as I started to strive to do something I’ve never dreamed of before. And guess what, I’ve succeeded!" Zaroori said.

    According to him, diving became the most breathtaking experience in his life. However, Zaroori refused to stop there and decided to try other extreme activities, discovering along the way that there are plenty of like-minded handicapped people around the world.

    "I communicate with handicapped people from all over the world via the Internet, in order to organize extreme tours… Recently I met a man named Jared Martin in the UAE. He has serious health issues – spinal cord damage – and yet he does skydiving," he said.

    According to Zaroori, he even managed to create a group of dedicated "Iranian handicapped adventurers" who can perform truly astounding feats.

    "Few believe that the disabled and handicapped people can fly, sail, ski or do something equally spectacular. Experiences like that leave a tremendous impact on the life of a handicapped person: they help you believe in yourself, give you joy and invigorate you. I’m a writer and a journalist, so I always try and emphasize this aspect in my stories. Many of the feats that I have achieved together with my friends in Iran were previously never accomplished by anyone. And an ordinary healthy person would be hard-pressed to do some of the things that we perform. Through our efforts we motivate these people to perform great feats. It is hard, but it is doable," Zaroori surmised.

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    Tags:
    diving, skydiving, extreme sports, disability, Iran
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