Name: Allysa Seely
Sports: Paratriathlon
Height: 5'4"
Classifications: PTS2 (paratriathlon), T36 (track & field)
Birthdate: January 4, 1989
Birthplace: Phoenix, Ariz.
Hometown: Glendale, Ariz. 
Current Residence: Colorado Springs, Colo.
High School: Mountain Ridge High School
College: Arizona State University, Interdisciplinary Studies: Sport Psychology and Exercise and Wellness ‘13

Career Highlights

2016 Paralympic Gold Medalist, Triathlon
2016 U.S. Paralympian, Track & Field (6th, T36 200m)
Three-time World Paratriathlon Champion (2015, 2016, 2018)
2017, 2019 Paratriathlon World Championships silver medalist
2016, 2017 Sarasota CAMTRI Paratriathlon American Championships gold medalist
17-time ITU World Paratriathlon Event gold medalist (12 golds, 3 silvers, 2 bronzes)

Personal

Allysa Seely became involved in triathlon as a New Year’s tradition to try something she had never done before. She learned about triathlon and signed up for her first race a few weeks later. Seely was a member of the Arizona State University collegiate club triathlon team and a nationally ranked triathlete before her diagnosis. In 2010, Seely was diagnosed with Chiari II Malformation, basilar invagination, and Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, which affect her brain, spine, and connective tissues. After her first surgery, she was back to competing seven weeks later at the USA Triathlon Collegiate National Championships with ASU. She made her debut as an elite paratriathlete in 2012, earning bronze at the ITU Paratriathlon World Championships that year. Then in 2013, Seely had her left leg amputated below the knee due to complications and increased spasticity in her foot. That would move her into a new paratriathlon category — but she continued to thrive, winning five gold medals on the elite ITU circuit in 2014. She earned her first two world championship titles in 2015 and 2016.

At the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games, Seely made history by winning a gold medal in paratriathlon’s debut as a Paralympic medal event. She also competed in track & field at the Rio Games, placing sixth in the 200m. That same year, she was a featured athlete in ESPN the Magazine’s Body Issue. Seely has been dominant in the women’s PTS2 division since Rio, earning silver at the 2017 World Championships and winning her third career world title in 2018 after an undefeated 2018 elite season. In July of 2019, Seely won an ESPY for Best Female Athlete with a Disability. She faced significant health challenges in late 2020 and early 2021, spending several months in the hospital with endocarditis, severe inflammation of the heart. She returned to full-time training in the spring, regaining her fitness in time to earn a silver medal at the Americas Triathlon Para Championships June 27 in Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin, a key selection event for the Tokyo Games.

She says her biggest inspiration in life is her grandma for pushing her to be a better athlete and human and to make the world around her better. She also credits her service dog Mowgli as being a great training and life partner. When she travels for competitions, Seely collects postcards and mini silver spoons from each location. Her favorite spoon is a hand-painted ceramic spoon from Estonia, and some of her favorite places that she has traveled to are Northern Ireland and Poland. She says her name is spelled “Allysa” because of a misspelling on her birth certificate, and of her biggest talents outside of triathlon is creating DIY projects.

Elite Triathlon Career

2021: Earned a silver medal at the Americas Triathlon Para Championships in Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin, on June 27

2019: Won gold medals at the ITU World Paratriathlon Series events in Milan (April 27), Yokohama (May 18), and Montreal (June 28) • Earned a silver medal at the ITU Paratriathlon World Championships in Lausanne, Switzerland, on Sept. 1

2018: Completed her undefeated season with a win at the ITU Paratriathlon World Championships in Gold Coast, Australia (Sept. 12), marking her third career world title • Swept all three ITU World Paratriathlon Series races in Yokohama, Japan (May 12), Iseo-Franciacorta, Italy (June 30), and Edmonton, Alberta (July 27)

2017: Earned a silver medal at the ITU Paratriathlon World Championships in Rotterdam, Netherlands, on Sept. 14 • Won the first two ITU World Paratriathlon Series events of the season in Gold Coast, Australia (April 8), and Yokohama, Japan (May 13) • Won the women's PTS2 division at the Sarasota CAMTRI Paratriathlon American Championships (March 11)

2016: Won a gold medal at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games, leading a U.S. podium sweep with teammates Hailey Danz and Melissa Stockwell (Sept. 11) • Competed in the women's T36 200m final at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games, placing sixth (Sept. 13) • Won her second straight ITU Paratriathlon world title in Rotterdam, Netherlands (July 23) • Took gold at the Yokohama ITU World Paratriathlon Event (May 14) • Won the women's PT2 division at the Sarasota CAMTRI Paratriathlon American Championships (March 13)

2015: Won her first world title at the ITU Paratriathlon World Championships in Chicago (Sept. 15) • Won a gold medal at the Edmonton ITU World Paratriathlon Event (Sept. 5) • Was the runner-up at ITU World Paratriathlon Events in Detroit (Aug. 16) and Besançon (June 7) • Earned bronze medals at ITU World Paratriathlon Events in Rio de Janeiro (Aug. 1) and London (May 30) • Placed third in the women's PT2 division at the Monterrey CAMTRI Triathlon American Championships (May 1)

2014: Earned a national title in the women’s PT3 division (Sept. 20) • Placed fourth at the ITU Paratriathlon World Championships in Edmonton (Aug. 29) • Won gold medals at ITU World Paratriathlon Events in Magog (July 19) and Chicago (June 28), and placed second in Yokohama (May 17) • Won the Dallas PATCO Triathlon Pan American Championships (May 31)

2012: Placed third at the ITU Paratriathlon World Championships in Auckland (Oct. 20) • Took second at the Edmonton ITU Paratriathlon World Cup (July 6)