Peter Ryan

Paralympic Cyclist

A story of adversity that few will go through, many will come in contact with, and everyone can take away from.

Peter Ryan is a 27 year old visually impaired Paralympian. When Peter was 18 he began losing his sight. Now, nearly 10 years on, Peter speaks on a number of subjects and leaves audiences with a new outlook on their own lives. An extremely charismatic person, the audience can really feel a connection with Peter when he speaks. His honesty on his journey over the past near-decade offers an extremely insightful and in-depth look at mental health and the end results of not coping properly with life’s adversities. And his journey is far from over as he targets Tokyo 2020.

 

Peter-Ryan

Peter Ryan’s sporting dreams once revolved around playing hurling for Tipperary in Croke Park. However, in 2010 he started missing balls he should have caught in training. He tired to get contact lenses and instead his whole world shifted as he was diagnosed with Leber’s Hereditary Optic Neuropathy [LHON], a rare genetic disorder that left him with between five and ten percent peripheral vision in both eyes. He was legally blind.

Without sport or a job, Peter hit bottom and ended up in rehab at the Aiséirí Centre in Cahir,  where he began to take his first steps towards rebuilding his life. In 2012 he attended the Paralympics Open Day at UCD where he undertook a test on a watt bike which was to prove that he was a capable cyclist. Dial the clock forward to today and Peter is the stoker of a formidable two man cycling team with Sean Hahessy as the pilot. The two, having been paired together via the national para-cycling programme since 2015, have already made their mark on the Irish Cycling circuit having competed in the Paralympics in Rio in 2016.

Overcoming Adversity

Paralympic Sport

Mental Wellbeing

Life from the point of view of someone with limited vision

Overcoming Adversity

Paralympic Sport

Mental Wellbeing

Life from the point of view of someone with limited vision

“Peter Ryan has presented to a number of audiences on behalf of Fighting Blindness over the last number of years. He is a wonderful speaker and story-teller with an ability to eloquently capture the audience’s attention and imagination from start to finish. Most recently at our Retina conference 2016, the audience (made up of 200 international scientists, clinicians and researchers) were completely engaged and inspired by him” – Kevin Whelan, Fighting Blindness CEO

“Peter Ryan was the after dinner speaker at our annual Family Business Christmas Dinner. Peter iterated the importance of family support in tough times, which resonated with our guests. Peter has amazing positivity, a great sense of humour and has a very relevant and inspirational message to share” - Orla Delaney Business Development Manager, DCU Leadership & Talent Institute

"Peter Ryan tells a great story of overcoming personal adversity with great insight and with lessons for us all.  Peter not only tells his own story with unique passion but has lessons for life and business at all levels in his fight back from a Tipperary hurling minor who went blind to Paralympic heights" - Eoghan Stack, CEO, DCU Ryan Academy for Entrepreneurs

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