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In 2000, John Bennett was asked by his son to think up a sport that disabled people could all enjoy. It was while watching the Curling World Championships on television that John came up with the idea of New Age Kurling, an indoor version of the existing game.

For an accessible future

He thought about using a discus with a handle and bearings so it could slide along the ground. He invented pushers and ramps to allow people of all abilities to launch the kurling stones as well as vinyl mats as targets.

New Age Kurling has been used as part of rehabilitation programs in hospitals because the sport doesn't require any physical fitness to play, but exercises muscles you would not usually use. With the help of Disability Sport England and local authorities John wants to encourage more people to take up the sport as the benefits speak for themselves.

Expanding the business

What started as a sporting idea for disabled people quickly became popular with able-bodied persons too, and for the first time disabled people can play with or against able-bodied people on an equal level. As its popularity grew variations of the game were created, including Kurling Kroquet and Kurling Golf.

The sport is now played all over the world, with national and international competitions. Indoor curling is now enjoyed in 52 countries and John hopes for it to become a paralympic sport soon.

In October 2004 John was named the British Chamber of Commerce's regional Entrepreneur of the Year and short-listed for the national final.