Scoring the Winning Goal – Team Sports for the Disabled
Those living with a physical disability wake up every morning, and for that moment before the cloudy, peaceful haze of sleep wears off, believe they can climb that mountain, run like the wind, and score the winning try with a perfectly healthy body. Once the fog clears and the light of day sets in, the dreams become tainted when they are reminded of their physical limitations. In their world, the real world, even getting out of bed in the morning can be a challenge. Reaching or bending for something can take double or triple the time it would for someone without a disability. On this same scale, stairs, then, can be viewed as the equivalent to scaling a mountain.
No one likes to be told that they cannot do something. There is an unwritten law, an unspoken word that when someone is born with, or diagnosed with, a physical disability, the option of living a full life appears inconceivable. Sometimes instead of embracing the disability, and living the life they have been given to the fullest, the physically disabled person is often times told that they cannot participate in certain functions. When this message gets received over and over again, it starts to sink in and become a daily mantra, although a negative one. Certainly, there may be functions that are difficult or that require further assistance, but a person with a minor disability should never allow their life decisions to be based on a lifestyle that has been dictated to them.
Something to Overcome
One of the major drawbacks to being disabled, besides the obvious fact of living with the physical and mental barriers, is the feeling of social oddity. When a disabled person sees a basketball game in session at the park, he or she may desperately want to join in but most will not stop a game and adjust the rules and regulations based on the special needs of the individual.
That in itself probably causes the individual to feel like they have been branded with a big red X for all to see. Feeling like an outsider, or like they can offer no valuable contribution, is something that could easily frustrate a physically disabled person.
Yes You Can!
Team sports, consisting of a core group of physically disabled people, can help with the lacking feeling of camaraderie. On a team of like-bodied people, there is a sense of oneness that cannot be found outside of the group, and something that those with disabilities need to develop a strong sense of self-esteem and community.
At a fitness centre designed specifically for disabled individuals, you will find the avenue for growing with and playing on a team of individuals with similar needs. While there is no one-size-fits-all with disabilities, as we cannot categorize any disability, the goal is to make everyone feel like a star, remove that overly competitive element and allow and encourage people at varying skill levels to participate in activities they normally wouldn't have the opportunity to.
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