Sadie loves to shoot and score

By Louise Kinross

In many ways, Sadie Trant (above) is a typical 13-year-old. She loves listening to Taylor Swift albums and learning to play her songs on the piano. ‘I wish!” she says, when asked if she’s seen Taylor in concert.

Sadie has low vision, so when she started to play hockey this year it was with a blind team. “It’s pretty similar to normal hockey with a few adaptations,” she says. “The puck is a lot bigger and it’s thicker and heavier and has bells inside so when you shoot, you can hear it. The other main thing is when you pass to someone, that person has to tap their stick, so you know to shoot it to them.”

Sadie plays forward and has been skating since she was three. “I love being able to skate really fast and shooting,” she says.

In two weeks Sadie is participating in the annual Canadian National Blind Hockey tournament in Toronto. “It includes a women’s and girls’ summit where we can meet the players from the new women’s national team. We’re going to watch one of their games, then do a skills workshop with them.”

Sadie attends a French-immersion program in a local school in Kitchener, Ont. She learned about blind hockey through the W. Ross Macdonald School for the Blind in Brantford, Ont.

“My vision teachers there told me about all of these cool things I could do. I went to some weekend programs and I got to play blind hockey and also goalball. It’s a bit like basketball but with bells inside the ball. The school is gigantic and has so many resources and it’s really fun. I’ve made so many lifelong friends there and it’s been really great.”

Sadie just got back from a week’s stay at the school as she may attend it at some point in high school. “I think I’ll stay home for Grade 9 in French immersion, then probably go when I’m older.”

Sports at her current middle school aren’t adapted. “No, definitely not,” she says. “The sports aren’t adapted at all at my school. The teachers do try, but it’s not the best thing ever.”

She encourages other kids with disabilities to connect with organizations related to their disability, where they can meet peers and learn about adapted sports. “I think parents should introduce their kids to as many different things as they can with other people with disabilities. I’ve always wanted to try things.”

Sadie plays hockey once a week and her favourite NHL team is the Toronto Maple Leafs. “I like the whole sport. It’s so fun.”

Sadie’s low vision is related to albinism, a genetic condition her mother Emily Urquhart wrote about in her memoir Beyond the Pale. We interviewed Emily in this earlier BLOOM piece

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