Receiving an invitation to the Coronation of King Charles was a rare privilege, yet for two people with Dyspraxia/DCD, it was an acknowledgement of the accomplishments they made in their respective fields. Kiera Byland, a decorated Special Olympian, and Daniel Branch, a nurse and indefatigable volunteer, earned the honor of being part of the Coronation events. Previously, each had been awarded the British Empire Medal (BEM) for their Civil contributions in the U.K.
Kiera competed in the Special Olympics, winning six gold medals for cycling at the 2015 and 2019 Special Olympics World Games. Apart from Dyspraxia/DCD, she has Rubinstein Taybi Syndrome and some autistic traits. She has problems with time, numbers, reading and writing, and struggled to make friends at school. According to her mother “The moment she joined Special Olympics, she went to her first cycling event in 2014 and she made friends.”
Because of her Dyspraxia/DCD, Kiera’s route into cycling was an unconventional one. Usually, cyclists start with a road bike and move onto the track if they so choose, but Kiera struggled with gears and brakes. As a result, she developed her balance in the velodrome where the bikes have no brakes and just a single gear.