Videos

MMA is a physical sport, we’re not baking cookies in there – #100days100stories

100 shttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mFOKAFe0UXU

Seventeen-year-old Jack says he took up mixed martial arts (MMA) – which combines elements of kickboxing, wrestling and jujitsu – three years ago for “the wrong reasons”.

Jack has cerebral palsy and was getting bullied at school for being the “fat disabled kid”. He wanted to do something to boost his confidence, so he started boxing with some friends.

“But then a couple of weeks into doing the boxing, my coach turned out to be an MMA coach as well, and started teaching us some ground game”, explains Jack.

“Then from that I’ve just been doing MMA ever since.”

The right side of Jack’s body is a lot weaker than his left and he has limited use of his right hand – but Jack fights confidently against able-bodied men, often much older and bigger than he is.

Three years since taking on the full contact combat sport Jack is leaner, stronger and more confident.

Jack trains with a coach three times a week for three hours and does extra training during the week. His hard work pays off – Jack often wins fights and has the titles and trophies to prove it.

“Cerebral palsy has given me the determination to never give up and I think that if I didn’t have this disability, I wouldn’t even like MMA – I would be too scared to do it.”

Jack running
Jack in training

Jack’s determination does come at a price: “MMA is a physical sport with a physical consequence – you can’t come into this sport not wanting to get hurt – we’re not baking cookies in there.”

“I can’t tell you how many times I’ve broken my nose, I’ve been knocked out five times I think, and I’ve had black eyes, I’ve had busted lips.”

Jack is sure he’s the only disabled MMA fighter in the UK – and aims to be the first physically disabled MMA fighter in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC).

“Being in the UFC would mean everything. I may never get to the point where I am a champion, (but) I’m gonna give it my best try. It would mean I’ve made it, it would mean I’ve proved everyone wrong – everyone that’s said I can’t.”

“Someone said, ‘those who say they can, and those who say they can’t – they’re both right, because those who say they can’t give up, and those that say they can, strive and they make it.”

Now, Jack doesn’t worry about bullies: “After a couple of months (of doing MMA) I realised that I just needed to chill out.”

“There are going to be people in the world that are just idiots, they have no idea what they’re on about, they throw the word spastic around like it’s funny, and it’s not.”

Find out more about 100 days, 100 stories and read the rest of our stories so far

Top 5 videos challenging attitudes to disability in 2013

As the year draws to a close, we’ve been looking back at the videos which got people talking about disability in 2013. Here are our top 5.

What have we missed? Let us know in the comments below.

#BornRisky Alternative Voices

Channel 4 recruited five people with communication difficulties to join their continuity team in December.  “An estimated 2.5 million people in the UK have some kind of communication impairment. We want to give them a platform and normalise the presence of disabled people on TV by adding fresh, representative voices to the rich diversity of our existing pool of announcers.” Find out more about the campaign and read our guest post from one of the announcers.

Five-year-old signs for parents

Claire Koch from America got the internet smiling when she was filmed enthusiastically signing for her deaf parents during her school Christmas carol performance so that they could fully enjoy it. The film has now been viewed by over 6.3 million people.

Britain’s Got Talent

Jack Carroll, a 14 year old with cerebral palsy, made it all the way to the Britain’s Got Talent final with his unique stand-up comedy style. Unfortunately he didn’t win, but with over 7.1 million views, we’re sure he has a great future in comedy ahead of him.

Guinness advert

A recent Guinness advert has received over 7.8 million views. It’s shows a group playing wheelchair basketball with a great twist at the end. See it for yourself.

People with disabilities react to mannequins

Pro Infirmis, a Swiss disability advocacy organisation created this video showing disabled mannequins as part of their campaign for International Day for People with Disabilities. This beautiful video has received over 8.4 million views.

Here at Scope we’ve been busy creating some fantastic videos too. Our videos about a young disabled girl’s experiences of bullying and of a mother sharing her experiences of caring for two autistic sons shocked many and prompted others to share their own similar stories. We met some inspiration people like Jamie who attended our school in Wales and Brett who ran the Brighton Marathon whilst pushing his son in a wheelchair! We’ve been supported by a number of celebrities; Arabella Weir and Rory Kinnear helped us talk about fostering disabled children; our Britain Cares video was voiced by Stephen Fry; and Paralympian Sophie Christiansen spoke to us about the Paralympics legacy

Video of the week: Looking for a great charity running team?

Looking for a great charity running team for your 10k race, half marathon, marathon or Ultra?

If so, look no further than Scope because whatever your charity event, running for Team Scope means awesome team spirit and an amazing cause to support. But don’t take our word for it.

This new video features some of our runners from the last couple of years talking about why we’re the best at events like the London Marathon, Brighton Marathon, Royal Parks Half Marathon and Ultra.