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Sean Conroy: Tennis, Anyone?

Meet a young man who's living proof that obstacles to exercise are mostly in our minds

Sean Conroy, 27, of Grass Valley, Calif., was born with a tumor on his spinal cord and has had multiple surgeries on his back. That hasn't stopped him, though, from taking up tennis and competing with opponents from his local Wheelchair Sports Association at the park.

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"He's a quick learner; the game comes easily to him," said his coach, Greg Cicatelli. "Sean has a natural ability for the sport. If he sticks with it, he can get into the open class—the highest level for a player."

Sean also works out in two gyms, lifting weights and working on machines to keep his shoulders powerful. Because of the wheelchair, his shoulders do much of the work; they ache if Sean doesn't keep them strong.

Also talented as a musician, Sean plays the trumpet and performs on keyboard with a rock band. If that doesn't keep him busy enough, he also attends junior college full time.

To keep his discipline, Sean makes exercise dates with friends. He wouldn't stand up a good friend, so even if he doesn't feel like working out, he keeps his word.

"Besides," he added, "I don't feel as well when I don't exercise. I slow down and eat more. My energy declines, and my body starts to hurt."

"Everybody has something to deal with" is Sean's philosophy. He is definitely on top of his game and getting the most out of life!

Since I first wrote about Sean, he's received his bachelor’s degree and is working in San Francisco in the software industry. Our hats off to him for his remarkable accomplishments and his positive approach to whatever life tosses his way.

Also of interest: Making excuses to avoid exercising?

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