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Visually-impaired children in China ‘see in the dark’ with jump rope team

(People's Daily Online)    14:24, January 06, 2021

Visually-impaired children of a jump rope team in Nanchang Municipal School for blind children in Nanchang, capital of east China’s Jiangxi province, have become more confident and extroverted through jump roping and participating in relevant competitions. They are now preparing for the Paralympics to be held in 2021 in Tokyo, reported.

(Photo/China Youth Daily)

The team consists of 13 children, with each suffering from varying degrees of visual impairment. The eldest member is in their second year of high school, while the youngest is in their third year of primary school, according to Xu Li, head coach of the team.

Xu took over the special team since she graduated from the sports department of Nanchang Normal University in 2018. In an effort to help students step out of the shadow of visual impairment, she encouraged more children to join the jump rope team, telling them that they would have the chance to represent and win glory for their school in several competitions. Xu’s words touched many children, adding several new members to the team.

(Photo/China Youth Daily)

Jumping rope requires speed, strength and skills, which could be difficult for the able-bodied, let alone visually-impaired children. These children can only understand movements for the sport through sound and rhythm, and then practice repeatedly to build muscle memory.

Fortunately, their hard work and perseverance has paid off. The team has won multiple awards in several national competitions, including a women's pair title at the 10th National Games for People with Disabilities held in 2019 in north China’s Tianjin municipality. Aiming for good performance at the upcoming Tokyo Paralympics, they now practice three times a week.

(Photo/China Youth Daily)

“I’ve been on this team for over two years. The training and competitions have made me more confident and braver,” said Hu Xiwen, a member of the team who is a fifth-grader in primary school.

In fact, not only Hu, all the members of the team have become more optimistic and are full of vigor.

(Photo/China Youth Daily)

Xiao Yong, headmaster of the school, named the team "The Light.” According to Xiao, the school offers visually impaired students many special courses on subjects including goalball, ping-pong, crafts, music, as well as massage.

“There is always a way to see in the dark,” said teachers of the school. They always tell students that there are many ways to feel the world, and they don’t have to rely on sight. 

(Photo/China Youth Daily)

(Photo/China Youth Daily)

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Web editor: Hongyu, Liang Jun)

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