Amputee swimmer PECHOVA (CZE)'s lesson: "In the water I feel equal to everyone else and with incredible strength"
Swimming is a sport for everyone. An extraordinary tool to break down barriers, restore hope and revive the desire to compete against yourself and, above all, against others.
A message of excellence comes from Czech Marketa Pechova and her story of struggles, rebirths and victories. A long battle, which began at the age of 3, against a cursed cancer in one leg: then at 12 the amputation. "These were very difficult years in my life,' the 43-year-old from Prague said. 'When I was 16, I was also diagnosed with a tumor in one of my kidneys, which I fortunately beat thanks to a transplant. Once I got out of hospital, I came back to life and tried swimming. In the water I felt equal to everyone else and with incredible strength".
Water became her natural element and she has not stopped since leaving hospital. "In 2019 I crossed the English Channel, from France to England, in 12 hours and 31 minutes. I was the first woman in my country with only one leg. A beautiful experience and one that I would like to do again to lower my time." Pechova took part in the women's 3km open water swimming race today, 24 August, which was held in front of the SPQR beach in Lido di Ostia as opening event of the 18th European Masters Aquatics Championships in Rome. She finished 12th in her category (40-44) in 54:46.4. "I am happy with my time: the 3 and 5 km are my distances. I was a bit excited at the start, then I relaxed. I am happy to have competed in Italy: it has been a beautiful, unique experience."