Student vows to defy joint pain to complete charity challenge

Gaby and Scott training in Bedford

Gaby and Scott training in Bedford - Credit: Archant

An A-level student from Huntingdon, who can barely climb stairs without dislocating her joints, is taking part in a gruelling challenge to raise money for Magpas Air Ambulance.

Gaby and Scott running in Bedford

Gaby and Scott running in Bedford - Credit: Archant

Gaby Wells, 17, from Hartford, has Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome - a condition which causes her joints to dislocate easily.

The St Ivo Sixth Form pupil has always been sporty, but was diagnosed about three years ago with means she now struggles with constant joint pain.

Gabby said: "Exercising for me is always a challenge; if I didn't feel motivated there is no way I would be able to do what I am doing now. When I am exercising it gives my mind something different to focus on, which usually takes my mind off the pain that I am always in. But after I've finished, the pain will always come straight back."

On July 4, Gaby met Scott Castel, a doctor for the charity, who will also be taking part in the Bedford Running Festival. Gaby will be doing the 10k Twilight run at the festival, which takes place on August 31.

Gaby said: "Six months ago, I decided to do something to give back to the air ambulance charity and team who have been called out to me five times. The most recent time they flew to me was when I was at school and I had fallen down some stairs.

"I suffered hip dislocations and injuries to my neck. Magpas Air Ambulance gave me hospital level pain relief and treatment that I needed there and then. I was in a huge amount of pain and I am very grateful they have been there for me."

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Magpas bought a new helicopter earlier this year which can go further and faster than older models which they hope will reach a greater number of patients.

The charity says it needs an extra £50,000 a month to keep it flying.

Gaby said: "I love running; I have always enjoyed being able just to put my headphones in and just concentrate. It helps me because my condition needs physio and running plays a big part in building up all the muscles around my legs, which in turn strengthens up the muscles around my hips. So far this year I have run 762.3km out of my challenge total of 1,000km. I am on target, but it's really tough."

To read more about how you can go #FurtherFasterGreater and show your support, visit: