Monique van der Vorst rides a bicycle

Rabobank Women’s Cycling Team announced the signing of athlete Monique van der Vorst to their professional roster, so the fact that she rides a bike may not seem too remarkable.

But it is. Because until last year, she was wheelchair bound.

Van der Vorst was an enthusiastic field hockey player as a young teen when she injured her legs. She became paralyzed at age 13 when she had surgery to repair the field hockey injury. Three years later, she began competing in handcycle races, and winning them, with three paralympic world championships in her impressive palmar├Ęs.

The Dutch wheelchair athlete was training last year when was sent to the hospital after a cyclist hit her hard on the road. During her rehab from this collision, she — wonder of wonders — regained the use of her legs!

She loved that she could walk and stand, but regretted that she could no longer compete as a paralyzed athlete. I’m sure she’s doubly thrilled, then, at Rabobank signed her to their women’s squad.

You can learn more about Monique at her website. She’s also selling her handcycles if you know anybody who needs them.

H/T to Murph and WIRED Magazine.

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