14 February 2020

Two-time Paralympic champion and Dancing on Ice star Libby Clegg opens up about skating, blindness and life as a mum

Two-time Paralympic champion and Dancing on Ice star Libby Clegg has revealed what it's like skating as a blind person. 

The 29 year-old who is already six weeks into the competition continues to astound fans, and even  more so, dancing partner Mark Hanretty. 

Clegg, appearing on the Lorraine show with Hanretty, said: "I just create a map in my head of where boundaries are and obstacles and I memorise all of those small details. I recognise and observe things you wouldn’t necessarily notice on a daily basis in my normal life and so I’m just trying to take that into the ice rink.

"I'm in safe hands. We’ve had so much support from everyone, its been amazing."

Clegg also spoke about the challenges of balancing work and her home life - she had her son Edward 10 months ago with fiancé and judo Paralympian Dan Powell.

She added: "Juggling life and training and doing Dancing on Ice is a lot but it’s fun. It’s been difficult because obviously he’s (Powell) got training and I’ve got my training and it’s trying to compromise. Obviously I’ve not had any maternity leave, I’ve just got back into everything."

On the track she competes in the T11 100m and 200m and won the double at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, but revealed she actually felt down once the Games were over.

The 2011 world champion said: "I was really low (afterwards) and even now I can’t really appreciate Rio. For me, it changed my life so much it wasn’t really the positive thing which I thought it was going to be. I realised that after Rio there was more to life than just winning medals. I felt like I didn’t have a purpose afterwards.

"I’ve worked my whole life towards it, it went really quickly, it didn’t feel like I thought it would feel. It was such a good experience but the comedown was horrific."

And as she looks ahead to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games during the summer, Clegg has a new perspective, with Edward has her priority. 

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