Lachlan Nicholson is finding the will to fight


Lachlan Nicholson found himself the victim of a terrifying crime and became determined not to let his disability keep him from protecting himself.

Lachlan Nicholson originally shared his story with Yoocan, a global collaborative community where people with disabilities share experiences and knowledge — so that no one feels alone. Yoocan and Why We Play are a natural match and overlap in the most important thing for our community INSPIRATION. FanSided is excited to partner with Yoocan and share some of their stories on our website — exciting and fantastic sports stories from people with disabilities. Come check out more of our joint material, and keep following for collaborations!

One Friday morning in November 2015, I was the victim of a home invasion. At the time, I was working as a communications manager for an emergency response company; my cousin (who is also my caregiver) and I were about to leave for a meeting when we were ambushed by a thief.

He forced my cousin back into the house and I was trapped in the car for about 45 minutes, unable to call for help because he’d also taken my phone. Violent crime is a reality of life in South Africa and I fully expected that both of us would die that day.

Fortunately, my colleague got suspicious when I didn’t show up for the meeting and came to investigate. After attempting to flee, the thief was caught and arrested.

Surviving that experience had a profound effect on my emotions, but above all, one thought kept running through my head; I never want to feel this helpless again.

So, I did something I thought was crazy; I approached my friend, Sabum Sean Cremer, a 4th dan blackbelt in Taekwon-Do and asked him to teach me how to defend myself. I’ve loved martial arts since I was a child, but honestly thought he would refuse. I expected him to say something like, “You’re a wheelchair-bound quadriplegic, there’s nothing I can do with you.”

However, he took me completely by surprise and said yes. Thus, my life-changing journey began. I now hold the rank of yellow belt, but the impact that training has made goes far beyond combat. I have come to see that my purpose in life is to give hope to others by sharing my experiences – struggles and triumphs alike. I invite you to follow me in whatever comes next!

Why We Play. light. More

Why We Play features stories about the power of sports to bring us together, overcome obstacles, make positive change and reach everyone. Read more here.