Karen Darke Team GB

HCI sponsors Karen Darke, paralympic cyclist and triathlete

HCI is proud to be sponsoring Karen Darke who is raising money to produce a film to be titled “Impossible”, about overcoming challenges that seem quite literally to be impossible.

Karen is paralysed from the chest down following an accident, aged 21, whilst sea cliff climbing. But far from stopping her, she has gone on to become a member of the British Para-Cycling team, winning a silver medal at the Summer 2012 Paralympics, going on to win a gold in her first ITU Paratriathlon World Championships. She has also achieved a lot more.

The film’s theme of overcoming the mental and emotional hurdles that exist when we face major challenges in life is a topic that will be very close to many of HCI’s clients, and there is perhaps nobody better qualified to address this crucial and profound subject.

Karen explains that “As part of the film I’ll be attempting a challenge that currently seems impossible to me. Jose Manuel Lopez, from Mallorca, is attempting to break the world record for the number of Ironman challenges completed in one year (he’s currently up to about 75!) with six weeks left to go. Jose has invited me to join him on this final Ironman of the year, on 6th September, in Mallorca. I’ll attempt the 2.4 mile (3.86 km) swim, 112 mile (180.25km) bike ride and a marathon 26.2 miles (42.2km) run using arm power alone, swimming in a wetsuit, using a handbike to cycle, and a racing wheelchair to run. We’ll be joined by other Mallorcan athletes with disabilities, including Xavi Torres, Paralympic swimmer with no arms or legs.”

Whilst the Ironman challenge will be the backdrop of the film, Karen is keen to point out that the content will be deeper than the physical challenge, looking at the shared experiences of the psychology and motivation that enable individuals to push the limits of possibility, in sport and other arenas. “How do we overcome challenges that seem impossible in life? How do we find the extra strength and resources we need when the going gets really tough? What can we learn about motivation and resilience to keep going towards a far-reaching or distant goal?”

The film is targeted towards all ages and genders. It will be useful for anyone working towards a challenging project or target in their work or personal life, and in particular those seeking some inspiration or motivation to work towards a new challenge or target, those looking for ideas to help with their own situation or challenge, and those interested in practical ideas and techniques that may be useful for overcoming challenges.

The film-makers will be Polished Project who are experienced in adventure and documentary and have worked with Karen in the past. They are a small production company with an interest in outdoor adventure with a human interest angle.

Funding will be used to cover the costs of getting a 2-man film crew to Mallorca to film the project over 5 days, and the significant editing costs involved in creating such a film.

Karen’s unbridled enthusiasm for motivating others who face challenges in life have further found outlet in her work as a performance coach and in her two books “If You Fall” (2006) and “Boundless” (2012).

Karen’s own inspirational website can be found at www.karendarke.com

She can also be seen in the “Wild Women” series by the Polished Project: Wild Women, Episode 1

Sandra Hamill and the HCI team wish Karen great success in making the film and in her participation in the Mallorca 2014 Ironman competition.