If you are looking for an inspiring adult who has not allowed clubfoot to set limitations in his life, look no further than endurance athlete Tony Spineto. The Aussie Clubfoot Kids team have loved connecting with Tony, who has competed in many events ranging from triathlons to Ironman competitions. Tony, based in USA, aims to educate parents on the positive outcomes that are possible for children born with clubfoot, using himself as an example. Continue reading for a run down of our chat with Tony, and an insight into his thoughts on living a life with clubfeet….
Lana (ACFK): What is one thing a parent could say, or one belief they could pass on to their child(ren), that has the potential to influence their future clubfoot journey?
Tony: I believe in sending the simple message of ‘Anything is Possible’ regardless of personal or physical limitations.
It’s important for parents and children to realize that living with Clubfoot can be challenging, but it is not something to be feared.
There are plenty of things that children and adults living with Clubfoot can do. Through my work and advocacy I have tried with all my effort to show that anything is possible. I tell my son daily that it is important to give back by showing others what they are capable of.
Lana: Do you have any top tips for managing pain, discomfort or challenges as an adult, due to clubfoot/clubfeet?
Tony: Pain management is always something that I experiment with. I am not a big fan of medications so I use holistic methods such as a strict vegan diet and supplements to ease my discomfort. I have found a vegan diet helpful in reducing pain and inflammation. Shoes are an absolute must for walking and running. I train, race and work in Hoka One Ones. These shoes have been instrumental in my success as an athlete living with clubfoot. In addition, when I have down time I stay off my feet and use ice and compression. My favorite compression socks to wear are 2XU leg and calf sleeves.
Lana: What is your most memorable moment – as an athlete – that you would like to share with the clubfoot community?
Tony: My most memorable moment was when I finished my first triathlon and realized that my clubfeet were a gift…
…a gift I could use to better this world and show others we are capable of much more than what we believe we can do. It was a special moment for me also, because I realised that my son would need my support as he begins his journey with clubfoot.
(Image to the right is Tony with his son Eli after completing his first kids triathlon).
Aussie Clubfoot Kids is proud to spotlight such an inspirational role model. We wish Tony, Eli and their family every success and happiness. If you would like more information or to connect with Tony, check out his website or Facebook page.