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PIISPANEN Toni
Sport Athletics
NPC Finland   
GenderMen
Born24 Jul 1976 in Helsinki, FIN
Height1.75 m
Weight 62 kg
Human Interest
Impairment Information
Type of Impairment
Spinal Cord Injuries
Origin of Impairment
Accident
Classification
T51
Further Personal Information
Marital status
Married
Family
Wife Anu, children Saga and Unna-Liina
Residence
Helsinki, FIN
Occupation
Athlete, Coordinator
Languages
English, Finnish
Higher education
Sport Management - University of Jyvaskyla: Finland
Sport Specific Information
When and where did you begin this sport?
He took up wheelchair rugby two years after his accident and played for 15 years. In 2008 he switched to wheelchair racing.
Why this sport?
"I have always been quick and I wanted a challenge on the side of wheelchair rugby."
Club / Team
Espoon Tapiot: Finland
Name of coach
Juha Flinck [national]
Coach from which country?
Finland
General Interest
Nicknames
Rasmus ["I got it from a wheelchair rugby staff person who thought for two years that my name was Rasmus."] (Athlete, 25 Aug 2011)
Most influential person in career
His father. (Athlete, 30 Aug 2012)
Hero / Idol
Finnish boxer Amin Asikainen. (Athlete, 25 Aug 2011)
Sporting philosophy / motto
"The best athletes train, even when others do not see." (Athlete, 25 Aug 2011)
Other sports
He competed in karate before his accident. He also played wheelchair rugby for 15 years before taking up para-athletics. (Athlete, 25 Aug 2011)
Ambitions
To win gold at the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. (tonipiispanen.fi, 21 May 2014)
Impairment
He sustained a spinal cord injury after an accident at a karate show in 1993. He was injured in front of 700 spectators at the sport hall in Lahti, Finland. (Athlete, 25 Aug 2011)
Other information
OCCUPATION
He has a master's degree in sport science and works at the Finnish Society of Sport Sciences. His job is to coordinate sport science in Finland. (samk.fi, 20 Aug 2013; lts.fi, 23 Mar 2013; Athlete, 25 Aug 2011)

Competition Highlights (historical)
Paralympic Games
Rank Year Event Result
1 2012 100m T51 21.72
World Championships
Rank Year Event Result
3 2011 200m T51 49.19
2 2011 100m T51 22.71
1 2013 100m T51 22.59
2 2013 200m T51 40.90
European Championships
Rank Year Event Result
1 2014 400m T51 1:35.97
1 2014 100m T51 23.56