A WHEELCHAIR-BOUND athlete has launched an app to help out disabled people who want to play sport.
Ben Crabbe, 28 from Cotswold Way, Enfield, launched the Perfect Imperfections app on Wednesday, February 24 – the third anniversary of the accident which left him paralysed.
He said he chose this day especially as he wants it to be a day of celebration and success rather than dwelling on his injury.
The app, which allows people and organisations to share news and events on disability sport to make participation a lot easier, was accepted by Apple into their store on Friday.
He said: “I’ve got really good feedback on it so far, but I had to get professional help to put it together – it was a lot more difficult than I thought. We were aiming to launch in January, but there were some problems and improvements we needed to sort out – Apple are quite fussy.
“I knew they were looking at it on Friday, so I was just sat up refreshing my emails. Eventually I got the acceptance email at 11pm. I was buzzing, it was a good day. It opens up a huge potential market for us.
“Putting the app together made me realise how difficult it is to get people to put their events out there. I was trying to get people to follow and commit to something that didn’t exist. But now it is real, and on a big marketplace, hopefully we will have more luck.”
Mr Crabbe says that getting into sport in the last three years has opened up new opportunities – having never played tennis before, he has recently been accepted onto a training programme for wheelchair tennis ahead of the 2020 Paralympics in Tokyo.
He said: “I hardly ever did sport before the accident, I had never even watched a tennis match. Hopefully other people can have a similar experience.
“People can lock themselves away after an accident, when I go to the pub people are always surprised that I’m out of the house. But I was looking for something to do to take my mind off it, but it was always tough to find something.
“When you end up in a wheelchair, you push everyone away. For me, doing sport was the only time when I could forget any of my unhappiness or frustration. But it is expensive, and difficult to find. That’s why I think this app is needed – I’m going to use it myself.
“There was nothing on Google or Apple about disabled sport, so I just decided to do it myself.”
Perfect Imperfections is available on the Apple Store now.