José Rebelo is the managing director of the Association sportive et communautaire du Centre-Sud (ASCCS) and now retired sitting volleyball player on the national Canadian team.
He graciously accepted to be the ambassador for the Pan American Sitting Volleyball Zone Championships. The competition is sanctioned by World ParaVolley and overseen by ParaVolley Pan America and will be held at the Complexe sportif Claude-Robillard from October 26 to the 29. Défi sportif AlterGo is the host of the qualifying event for the World Championship in 2018, held in the Netherlands.
José had a few words of wisdom to offer to the players: «It’s funny to say, but play for fun, do not forget that it is a game! Do not let the stress, the performance or the pressure to succeed take over! »A passionate athlete
Passionate about sports, José Rebelo started his career playing standing volleyball, a Paralympic sport until 2007. José and his teammates won the silver medal at the 2000 Sydney Paralympic games.
When the paralympic committee decided to remove standing volleyball from the roaster, José and his teammates had to find a way to recycle their talents in order to play sitting volleyball. “We thought it would be easy, that instead of being standing, we’d be sitting!»” he says laughing. “It was not that at all! It is a new perspective, the spatial and temporal coordination completely different, the game is much faster and to move around on the ground, is no small feat. It was not easy!“
In spite of these changes, José took the most out of his experience as an athlete: “Volleyball allowed me to travel a lot and I was extremely proud to represent my country during international competitions. It is a lot of fun!”A player within the community
José Rebelo has been the managing director of the ASCCS for almost 10 years. The ASCCS offers various activities for people with disabilities as well as a summer camp for young people with disabilities: “The centre has a great sensibility towards people with disabilities and has added to its activities catered to their needs like the accompaniment program, adapted sports and free access to the training room, the pool and to all other activities.”
José Rebelo has been involved throughout the years with various activities organised by AlterGo, including the Défi sportif AlterGo where he participated in sitting volleyball competitions and also hosted initiation activities in sitting volleyball. He was also involved with the “Changing minds changing lives” program put in place by the Canadian Paralympic Committee to bring awareness about the importance of sport for people with disabilities.Always active
Now retired, José continues to be implicated within the sport and still plays sitting volleyball in semi-professional tournaments with his ex-teammates from the national team: “It’s just an excuse to see each other and have fun!” José and his team, the Eh-team, participated in the American National tournament in May and will attend a tournament in Europe next year.For more information on the Pan American Sitting Volleyball Zone Championships, click here .