Natasha Lambert has been fascinated by sailing since she was nine. She was a little disappointed to learn that because of her paraplegic cerebral palsy, she cannot sail alone, as it affects her movement and communication skills. When her father saw his daughter’s interest in sailing, she developed an electrical method that would enable her to navigate a boat. Natasha started using her boat in small rivers and very soon began to sail in the sea.
Now Natasha sails a 46ft catamaran “Blown Away” that has been specially modified for her. She steers the boat with her pipe – when she sips it goes left and right when she blows in. There is a sensor in her helmet which is connected to the sails and which she controls with her tongue. Through various sailing challenges, she has raised £ 65,000 for charity over the years and will sail another 3,000 miles with a crew of 8 on November 22nd to raise £ 30,000 for three charities – the Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust, RNLI and the MissIsle School of Sip Puff Sailing, Natasha’s own school where other disabled people sail using the Sip and Puff method.
For more information on Natasha’s modified boats, visit the MissIsle website.
Check out the videos below to learn more about her adventures and how she navigates her boats with her mouth.