Born on September 27, 1997, in Columbus, Ohio, Zion Clark suffered from a rare birth defect called Caudal Regression Syndrome which cause him to be without legs ever since his birth.

Zion had to fend for himself from a very young age as he was given up for adoption at birth with a mother, not fit enough to take care of him and no father. His childhood was a recipe for disaster, bouncing between the foster care system and being labelled a problem child made the system give up on him early. Despite all this, Zion didn’t stop learning new skills. He picked up wrestling and music at a young age which also became his outlet from an abusive living situation. Resiliency and consistency helped him continue to figure out his way of approaching his passions and then later earned him his position as an AllAmerican wrestler, and lead drummer of his church. He continues to defy all odds with his optimistic approach and the ‘no excuses’ mentality that he embodies.

While in elementary school, Zion was introduced to the sport of wrestling but initially, it didn’t fare well as he didn’t win a single match for several years. At Massillon High School, he met coach Gil Donahue who recognized his passion for wrestling and his relentless work ethic as well. Over the next 3 years, ZIon improved his wrestling technique and hit the weights as if he was possessed which lead to an amazing transformation.

During his senior year, Zion finished the season 33-15 and was one match away from qualifying for the D-I Ohio High School State Wrestling Championships. With an incredible display of heart and determination, Zion wrestled his opponent with a 20-pound weight difference beyond 6 minutes of regulation time and 2 overtimes, only to fall 1-0 to sudden death. The fans in the packed gymnasium rose to their feet and zealously 

applauded Zion’s courage and determination. A few months prior to this, Zion went on to capture his second high school track wheelchair racing title at the state championships.

Several colleges lined up for Zion and he chose Kent State (Tuscarawas), where he spent 2 years steadily improving his wrestling skills and finding success at the varsity level.

His confidence and national ranking were both on the rise and then he decided to embark on his toughest mission to date, which was to become the first American Athlete to compete in both Olympic (Wrestling) and Paralympic (Wheelchair Racing) Games in Tokyo 2020.

Zion surrounded himself with a very dedicated and highly supportive team given the magnitude of the challenge he’d taken up. Due to his tremendous upper body strength and athleticism, Zion is currently also pursuing interests in powerlifting, wheelchair bodybuilding and the circus arts.

All the herculean efforts put in by Zion Clark didn’t go unnoticed as a Hollywood producer documented his entire journey during his senior year. The film ‘Zion’ garnered critical acclamation at the prestigious Sundance Film Festival in 2018 and was subject to a lot of of global media exposure. The movie is currently available to be watched on Netflix! Despite his brutal training and practice regime, Zion stays busy as a motivational speaker.

He’s an entrepreneur, motivational speaker, actor, author and athlete to name a few. But he’s added another new accolade to the list – record breaker.

Zion attempted the fastest 20m walking on hands on 15 February 2021 at his former high school gym in Massillon, Ohio, USA. With over a million followers on Instagram, over seventeen million likes on TikTok and nearly forty million views of his Guinness World Record Video on Youtube, one can clearly make out how he is an inspiration to the masses. Ellen DeGeneres also met Zion Clark and surprised his mother with a 2019 Chevrolet Traverse.

The inspirational story of Zion Clark teaches us how things don’t always flow smoothly in life, but in order to succeed, people need to adapt to their individual circumstances. Zion takes pride in his hard work and exclaims that there are no excuses or shortcuts! It’s all about faith, passion and perseverance. He urges others to be “greater than the obstacles you face.” He parts with the final words that “You and only You, are in control of your destiny!”

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