Ernst van Dyk – Motivational knows if you add the number of miles wheelchair athlete Ernst van Dyk races in a season, it’s second only to the distance he has to fly to get to the respective starting lines.
Ernst is a Conference Speaker, Motivational speaker, MC and Inspirational Speaker
With South Africa as his home base, Ernst has completed marathons and 10K races in New York, Japan, France, Boston, Atlanta, LA and Sydney just this last year alone.
In 2001, he clocked 24 wins on the same international circuit. Book through Conference Speakers
Ernst was born with congenital birth defects. ‘This child will suffer from a lack of quality of life due to his disability,” the doctor told his parents, ‘You should put him up for adoption.”
But Ernst’s parents took him home, where they later recognized Ernst’s affinity for sports and encouraged him to participate in gymnastics, table tennis, track and field and swimming.
Ernst preferred swimming to all other sports, however, and, by 17, had won national colors for his aquatic success.
In the Barcelona Olympics in 1992, he finished fifth place in the pool, while also making it to the semifinals in wheelchair events.
This track appearance turned out to be pivotal in Ernst’s career: The cheer of the crowd as he circled the track propelled him to quit swimming and concentrate solely on wheelchair racing.
A year later, Ernst’s fifth place finish in an Australian 10K caught the attention of a German company, Sopur who offered to sponsor him.
Three years later, however, company budget cuts resulted in the loss of his funding. Disappointed, Ernst took a nine-month hiatus from competing, until he realized too much of his life was missing without sports.
Ernst van Dyk-Paraplegic Athlete Motivational went back to training and competing, and in 1998 secured a sponsorship with Invacare, a relationship that led to him to win five consecutive Boston Marathons. Follow CSI on Twitter
Above all, Ernst tries to maintain balance in his life, dedicating time to training, motivational speaking, spending time with his wife Suzanne and finding playtime with his two Siberian Huskies.
When Ernst considers the difficult day of his birth, he sees it as a second chance at life instead of the upset of what his life could have been.
The doctor said Ernst would lack quality of life. Ernst van Dyk-Inspirational Motivational Speaker instead uses these words to fuel himself to victory — no matter what continent he finds himself in.
Ersnt is an exceptional Motivational Speaker for all and any conference or event
As a veteran of many of these occasions, and knowing how difficult an audience of students can be, I have seldom experienced a guest speaker so warmly embraced and acknowledged by a standing ovation.
John Donald, Head: Sports Administration, University of Cape Town
The guests were inspired at the end of his talk!
Andrea Shea, SABMiller
Ernst is an inspirational person and speaker. The students loved his easy manner!
Dr Melleta Louw, Student Counsellor, Cape Peninsula University of Technology
Ernst was well prepared. He knew exactly how to address the audience and shared many of his life philosophies with us.
Danie Pretorius, Shofar Christian Church, Stellenbosch
He excited the audience – his presentation was in a word EXCELLENT!
Gina Mantel-Böhr, Durbanville High School
Ernst is a very good speaker. The Vodacom staff found his life story inspiring because he illustrated it with real experiences. Because of the way he presented his story, people could identify with him.
Karen Smith, Vodacom
Travels from: Cape Town
Speaking fee: from R35,000