Diego Gastaldi, the Paralympian who built a special camp for him – The Wom

dodigital offender, Paralympian and Italian champion. Sport, nature and freedom. This is the resume Diego Gastaldi who, with his 131k followers on Instagram, manages to be an inspiration “not because he can just do the shopping in a wheelchair,” but because he truly is a champion. Now we will tell you why!

Born in Sardinia in 1984 and passionate about sports since childhood, today Diego own 4 Italian track and field records and won two medals at the European Championships in Berlin in 2018.

But Diego’s story is not only limited to sports, because his adventurous spirit and entrepreneurial mindset led him to face new challenges, such as building a campsite suitable for your needs to explore the world.

A recent social media video of him showing off his new camper has gone viral 4 million views.

Interview with Diego Gastaldi

“I was that kid who took your washing machine apart to see what it was like inside”: this is one of the answers you gave your followers when they asked you how you learned to do these things, and I was particularly impressed. a child so smart, Diego?

I certainly enjoyed and still enjoy figuring out how things work, as well as the washing machine I was able to take apart the train they gave me for Christmas! At the age of 20 I enrolled in Aeronautical Engineering although, unfortunately, I did not complete the studies due to the accident a year before graduation. DIY has always been a passion of mine!

Therefore, the adult Diego has not lost this curiosity and resourcefulness. How long did it take you to build your camper? Can you tell us about the construction process of the camper?

It was really a huge challenge! The biggest difficulty was also in “how” to make it because having physical limitations I had to divide the work according to my needs. I was supported by a machine that put me on my feet, blocking my knees, but that inevitably led to severe back pain, sometimes for days. I did most of the work myself, although my brother helped me in various ways, such as mounting the solar panels on the roof. My biggest challenge? It was my mess! Although I am very proud to design the project.

Traveling the world in a campervan is an adventurous challenge for anyone, disabled or not, don’t you agree?

Sure yes, but if you like something it doesn’t bother you. For example, I couldn’t stand eight hours a day in the office! To make it all more adventurous, because my goal is to go further and not stay in the camper, I have my bike that I can pedal. Thanks to her I will really be able to go anywhere, on the cliffs, on the sand. I don’t just want to look at the sea, I really want to explore it! Problems exist and always will exist, but they are part of the experience. Being away from my family and loved ones can weigh on me.

So what does your typical day look like?

My typical day does not exist! I’m against routine, it really wears me down. Today, for example, I am in Calabria and with the children from WWF go see the turtles hatch. A month ago I was in the Alps and downhill with other guys.

Talking about your journey as a Paralympian, you have achieved great success and won important titles. How did you find the balance between your sporting passions and the adventure of travel?

I could never find a balance. Because with Paralympic sports I was training from 8 in the morning until 7 at night so there wasn’t much space to travel. Now I’m mostly into “exploratory” sports, as I define them, i.e. exploring the reef, diving, sailing. Although it is no longer a part of me, Paralympic sport has given me so much, introduced me to amazing people and was a fundamental phase in my recovery after my accident.

Can you tell us about your next goals?

I have already achieved an important goal in this phase of the journey. My next wish is add purpose to my life in which I find more and more protection of the seas and oceans, in fact I am in contact with various clubs. I want to feel important in protecting our planet.

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