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Nick Taylor switches from wheelchair tennis to boccia and seeks national gold in Cedar Rapids




CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) – At age 42, Nick Taylor has already lived the life of an Olympian with an Olympic-level itinerary.

The multiple Paralympic athlete has been to more than 40 countries and multiple Paralympic games. But after a career of more than 20 years in wheelchair tennis, he plays boccia.

Towards the end of my tennis career I started playing boccia. I wanted to keep competing, Taylor said. I am a very competitive person.

Once he started, there was no stopping it.

I start off a little slow, and then I get into it more, and then I get obsessed, and then I’m going to practice four or five hours a day and try to travel the world to do it.

And that is exactly what he has done. Now competing for a National Championship in downtown Cedar Rapids.

Boccia is a Paralympic twist on boules. Contestants in different classifications try to get their balls closest to the cue ball or the Jack.

Taylor says 50 percent of the game is mental.

You work to get every shot. You have to be so automatic that you can make it when you get into that pressure situation, Taylor said.

The other 50 percent is strategy.

Sometimes you have to think three balls ahead of what you’re throwing to set how (the game) is going to end, Taylor said. If you only think about the next ball, you will lose.

He’s only been playing the game for a few years, but Taylor has the experience of a Paralympic veteran. So he has big goals ahead of him.

The ultimate goal is to be prepared for Los Angeles by 2028.

Copyright 2022 KCRG. All rights reserved.




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