Nico Calabria is the youngest member of the U.S. Amputee Soccer Team, and has overcome his fair share of obstacles in life. His story is now being told in an inspirational ad for Powerade as part of the company’s 2014 FIFA World Cup campaign.
Calabria was born with only one leg, but began kicking a ball around as a toddler, using a prosthetic. He eventually ditched the prosthetic, opting for forearm crutches, and Calabria became fast enough to play in games with players who had both their legs.
“People usually think I was trying to make a statement by playing soccer with able-bodied people and not giving up, but really…” he said, via CocaColaCompany.com (Coca-Cola is Powerade’s parent company). “I just love playing soccer.”
Calabria also highlighted the difference in using the word “disability” versus using the phrase “differently abled” — which he said shows the differences in what people are able to do without focusing on what they can’t do.
Powerade’s short documentary about Calabria aired at the NYC Kicking + Screening Soccer Film Festival last week, and has already gotten over 200,000 views on YouTube.
Calabria plans to participate in the 2014 Amputee World Cup in the City of Culiacan, Sinaloa, Mexico.
“I’m planning on being a part of the team for the rest of my life, until I can’t play anymore. I have another 25 to 30 years ahead of me… as long as my body can keep up with it.”
Check out Calabria’s inspirational story in the video below, with a hat tip to Sports Grid.
Photo of the day
What is this, “The Sandlot?”
Photo via Twitter/@SportsCenter
Tweet of the day
Makes perfect sense.
[tweet https://twitter.com/SBNation/status/457360385561989120 align=’center’]
Video of the day
The more you know.