Dave Smith Paralympic Champion podcast

048: Dave Smith on choosing to live

Dave Smith, Paralympic champion shares his emotional story intertwining sporting pursuit and cancer survival. This interview is a deep one, it’s a full existential exploration of what is important, how and what we pursue and the focus on what really matters in our lives. I had the truly humbling, moving and inspirational experience of speaking to Dave Smith to tell his utterly remarkable story of sporting endeavour, fighting cancer and choosing to live life.

Show notes:

  • Living with purpose, the benefits and negatives of social media and the way in which the world can rapidly change
  • External and internal effects of spinal tumour
  • Reaching out for help
  • Regaining control better sleep, better nutrition, better exercise, reconnecting with passions and support of friends and mentors
  • Dave’s story form the beginning
  • Foot deformity from birth
  • Tumour symptoms from 17
  • Overtraining and pushing too hard
  • Bobsleigh challenge
  • Classifying for Paralympic sport
  • 2009 joining a supported rowing programme
  • Rowing support and investigation saved Dave’s life and identified the tumour
  • 2010 tumour diagnosis, life changed but sport was the coping mechanism
  • Re-diagnosis
  • Cancer diagnosis and the way in which you deal with it is very individual, use what works for you, Dave chose to use it as a battle and threw himself into sport.
  • The difference between the ‘have to’ and ‘want to’ goals
  • Who are you and what defines you, what is your purpose?


Dave’s website


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