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Lauren Steadman: Strictly Come Dancing has 'normalised' disability

Strictly’s Steadman on changing perceptions

Paralympic medallist Lauren Steadman says people’s perceptions of her disability have changed since appearing on television show Strictly Come Dancing.

The double world champion paratriathlete, 25, was born missing her lower right arm.

She has reached the Strictly semi-final alongside dance partner AJ Pritchard.

“Before, kids and adults would look at me and see my arm first before they saw me,” she told BBC Look East.

“Whereas now they don’t even see my arm – it’s been normalised – and it’s just ‘that’s Lauren’ and ‘Lauren, you’re doing amazing’.

“I think that’s how it should be, and it’s just really lovely to be able to inspire everyone and show them that anything’s possible.

“It’s been a rollercoaster. Emotionally and physically I’ve put myself outside my comfort zone, and I’m so glad I took the opportunity.”

Steadman competed in two Paralympics as a swimmer before winning para-triathlon silver at Rio 2016.

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