Games type: Summer Paralympic Games
Games year: Rio 2016
Para sport: Para swimming
Gender: Male
Date of Birth2 October 1996
CoachSimon Mayne
OccupationMechanic and Para swimmer
ClassificationS9, SB8, SM9
Impairment (Disability)Limb deficiency
(Proximal Focal Femoral Deficiency PFFD)

Jesse Reynolds is a Para swimmer and former representative wheelchair basketball player from Hamilton. Jesse swims in Auckland coached by Paralympics New Zealand Coach, Simon Mayne. 

Jesse was born in 1996 and took up swimming at age 11. He was a natural in the water. Only two years later, on his international debut, he grabbed a bronze medal in the 400 metre freestyle S9 at the Melbourne 2009 Paralympic Youth Games.

Jesse made his senior debut for New Zealand at the 2013 IPC Swimming World Championships in Canada, placing sixth in the 400 metre freestyle S9. 

Jesse went on to have four fourth-place finishes at the 2015 Pan Pacific Para Swimming Championships in the USA. He finished fifth in the 400 metre Freestyle S9 at the Glasgow 2015 IPC Swimming World Championships. 

Jesse competed in his first Paralympic Games at the Rio 2016 Paralympics. He swam a personal best time in the 100 metre Butterfly S9 final and finished seventh in the 100 metre Backstroke S9 in a time of 1:05.57, shattering his previous personal best time. Jesse found the experience of his very first Paralympic Games final to be a exhilarating. 

Jesse was part of New Zealand’s most successful Paralympic team ever. The team of 31 Paralympians in Rio broke three world records, secured 21 medals (9 gold, 5 silver and 7 bronze) and finished first in the world per capita and 13th in the world overall on the medal table (previous best: 16th).

Most recently Jesse was part of the New Zealand Commonwealth Games Team that competed in the Gold Coast. Jesse had three outstanding swims, including missing a bronze medal by the narrowest of margins on two occasions. Jesse now has his sights firmly focused on preparation for the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.

Jesse officially received his ‘numbered’ Paralympic pin as part of The Celebration Project in Auckland in May 2019.

Paralympic results

2016Rio Paralympic Games7th place – Men’s 100m Backstroke S9
8th place – Men’s 100m Butterfly S9