Nathan Zeidman is keeping his eye on the bocce ball

Nathan Zeidman has been involved in sports for almost his entire life: soccer, basketball, softball, golf, and bowling. All the skill and determination he’s applied to those sports led him to excel at bocce and qualify for the 2018 USA Games.

Originally, Nathan tried bocce to meet new people and socialize. But his introduction to the sport more than a year ago and his ongoing practice have given him an appreciation for the sport’s technique and rules. He also appreciates the game’s strategy, which varies depending on whether bocce is played one-on-one, team against team, or as a Unified Sports® team where athletes with and without intellectual disabilities compete together. “At the Games, maybe I’ll get to meet new people and see what techniques I can learn from them when they play,” he says.

Nathan’s year-round commitment to bocce and other sports means taking care of his health. As a Kaiser Permanente member, he has the support he needs to do that. He cut sugary beverages out of his diet and drinks more water than he used to. He says, “It’s important to stay fit. To stay active. To eat right. So you can train hard and get your gold medal!”

Special Olympics Team Washington bocce athlete Nathan Zeidman
Nathan Zeidman, bocce athlete for Team Washington and a Kaiser Permanente member.

When he’s not playing, training, or competing, Nathan works at Seattle Children’s in environmental services. He also enjoys hanging out with his friends, several of whom are Team Washington athletes. “I hope everyone competes as best as they can in the Games,” he says. “If they can’t get gold, hopefully they’ll try their best.”

He credits his parents as his biggest supporters, but hopes the entire community will come out and rally around him and his teammates as they shine here on their home turf. “You should come watch us play at the USA Games in Seattle in July. And if you’re going to come, come to bocce!” You can see Nathan in action at the University of Washington, where all the 2018 USA Games bocce events will be held.