Surfing a wave of success

Winning the championships Photo: Facebook / Sarah Almagro

A young woman from Marbella lost her limbs at the age of 18 due to meningitis. In a shining example of self-improvement, this is the story of Sarah Almagro.

She spent five months in hospital and two months after her admission, her hands and feet were amputated. “As soon as I arrived at the hospital, they told me that they had to amputate”, Sarah explained. At the time, she confessed that, “it was a shock. I was about to start university”.

This brought about a radical change in her life. Thanks to her prosthesis, she walked again and was able to take up the sport that had been part of her childhood: surfing. Multiple operations and a 10-day induced coma have not prevented Sarah Almagro from becoming a European Adaptive Surfing Champion.

Getting back in the sea

Sarah explained how she got back in touch with the sea, “a person who surfed on my beach got in touch with me and first I learned to swim again, and in the tenth lesson they told me I was ready to go to the sea”.

Her surfboard has accompanied her in her victories in national championships and 2023 proved to be the best year so far for her career as she was crowned European champion in adapted surfing.

Sarah Almagro is now world champion of adapted surfing in the Prone2 category. The Marbella surfer achieved this historic triumph in Huntington Beach, beating 13 rivals. This gold medal joins the others she won in the national and European championships. Watch her winning achievement on YouTube

Next is the Olympics

Sarah now has her sights set on the Olympic games. “The Games in 2028 are in Los Angeles, in 2032 in Australia, which is the birthplace of surfing”, said Sarah

In addition to competing and preparing for the Olympics, Sarah gives talks on motivation and self-esteem. “Surfing, I feel that I am the same as everyone else. I feel free. Surfing has helped my self-esteem. To see that I can do what I did before. It’s just different because now I do it lying down”.

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Written by

Kevin Fraser Park

Kevin was born in Scotland and worked in marketing, running his own businesses in UK, Italy and, for the last 8 years, here in Spain. He moved to the Costa del Sol in 2016 working initially in real estate. He has a passion for literature and particularly the English language which is how he got into writing.