Image shows Megan with a group with her martial arts groupTo celebrate the Great British Week of Sport we are talking to members of the #GoalballFamily to find out more about other sports that they are involved in.

Today, we are featuring Megan Smithson-Booth who plays for RNC Academy and is in the Women’s GB squad:


Until starting at RNC in September 2018, I had never played goalball before. Regularly training and playing alongside experienced players, I quickly improved. In my first season I played in 3 Novice tournaments and was the 2nd highest female goalscorer in the South & West League.

I also got invited to a GB training camp (at RNC) with Israel which was a great opportunity. Following this I was selected for tournaments in Finland and Turkey and then, in the summer of 2019, I was selected for the World Youth Championships in Sydney, Australia! We won bronze. It was brilliant!

I was then selected for the European Championships in Germany. We made it to the semi-finals but unfortunately narrowly missed out on a medal, finishing 4th.

I have continued to train hard at home during lockdown so that when we return to goalball I will be fit and ready. My ambition is to represent GB at the 2024 Paralympic Games in Paris.

Image shows Megan stood with her GB teammates holding the Union Jack flag

Taijutsu and kickboxing:

Taijutsu is a martial art that involves stand up grappling and ground fighting as well as some knife skills. I started going to sessions at my local leisure centre when I was just 6 years old as my grandma thought it was important for me to learn some self-defence skills.

I entered regional competitions to begin with, and then national competitions, progressing to a brown belt. I still go along to sessions now when I’m back home and hope eventually to become a black belt. As it is a very tactile sport, my visual impairment doesn’t really put me at a disadvantage.

I also enjoy kickboxing. I started this when I was 14 because I wanted to do something which involved more fighting! We do sparring and circuit type classes which are fantastic for your fitness. As with any sport there is also a really good social element.