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Monday, 24 February 2020

Lecturer with disability to summit Mt Kilimanjaro again

DOUBLE TROUBLE: Sport Management lecturer Zizipho Ndlwana (far right), the first black amputee to summit Mount Kilimanjaro, will be attempting to reach the mountain's highest peak again.  DOUBLE TROUBLE: Sport Management lecturer Zizipho Ndlwana (far right), the first black amputee to summit Mount Kilimanjaro, will be attempting to reach the mountain's highest peak again.

A Sport Management lecturer is set to become the first transtibial (below the knee) amputee to summit Kilimanjaro twice in six years.

After successfully climbing the highest peak of the highest mountain in Africa  in 2014, Zizipho Ndlwana’s preparations this time around involve a lot of walking and hiking as opposed to the extensive gym time he put in before his last summit. At 5,895 metres above sea level, Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest single free-standing mountain in the world.

He aims to motivate and inspire other physically challenged athletes all over the world that they too can conquer Mount Kilimanjaro. He also hopes to raise funds for them and the underprivileged so that they can achieve their goals in the sports arena.

“I’m doing endurance training and aerobic exercises,” says Ndlwana. He adds that his diet ahead of the summit includes high protein foods for muscle recovery after the exercises.

He quips that six years ago he was leaner, stronger and had fewer responsibilities and further argues that because weather conditions between Cape Town and Tanzania differ, one can only prepare for what one can.

Ndlwana’s hiking group includes three wheelchair-bound people and another amputee. Lee Wyser, Founder of the Non-Governmental Organisation Guts 2 Glory Foundation and the brainchild of the Kilimanjaro expeditions, and her team from Switzerland will be rendering support to meet the needs of the climbing athletes.

“It’s going to be harder this time around, I have no experience of hiking with people in wheel-chairs,” he says.

Ndlwana will also be conducting research on extreme sports participants and their perceptions of risks and he wants the Kilimanjaro expeditions to grow and be integrated into his department’s culture of community engagement.

“I’m sure it’s something that will build [the students’] morale as it will allow them to interact with people who are different from themselves while improving their own health and fitness,” he argues. “It’s a great way of promoting the course, the faculty, disability and maybe the university at large.”

Ndlwana, was involved in a car accident in 2010, which caused his left leg to be amputated as his body sustained multiple fractures.

Written by Kwanele Butana

Email: butanak@cput.ac.za

Provides coverage for the Business and Management Sciences and Education Faculties, Student Affairs Department and Cape Town and Mowbray Campuses.