Tag Archives: United States

Sweet Wheelchair Summer Camp Skillz

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After my injury, my mother forced me to go to a wheelchair summer camp, and it was one of the scariest things I’ve ever done, well the first day or two at least, and then by the third and fourth days I completely forgot about home and had the time of my life.

That’s the uncanny thing about summer camp as a wheelchair-user – even if at first you don’t think you want to be there, before you know it you’re having so much fun you completely forgotten about all of your outside cares and worries. It’s an escape into a world I wish I could stay in permanently.

Do you feel the same way, or want to know why I do? Watch our three videos below showing some of the best elements of summer camp as an adult with a disability.

Video #1: Throwing a tomahawk, hitting a bullseye

In our first video, we have an uber short clip that needs to be played over and over again for full effect – a young female wheelchair-user hitting a bullseye when throwing a tomahawk. Apparently, it’s not easy to do in a wheelchair (well heck, I could’ve told you that).

And this ancient art form is being resurrected at summer camps all around the country, and the greatest thing is that you can do it directly from your wheelchair.  The only adaptations required would be a sling to help people with limited hand movement hold the tomahawk better.

In this video shot by a counselor at Camp Bullseye, you get a great view of the young lady making the bullseye shot. Talk about lucky. Watch a young woman throw a bullseye with a tomahawk

Video #2: Go to camp and learn from elite para athletes

A pilot program launched by Maine Adaptive Sports and Recreation last summer, it is scheduled to return this year due to its high popularity.  Simply called “Wheelchair camp at Pineland,” it is a introduction to adaptive athletics sports camp with the opportunity to learn from elite-para athletes.

From wheelchair basketball athletes like Zach Beaulieu, a former college player, to Christina Kouros, a snow sit-ski champion, the athletes who will be present are pretty spectacular. Watch a great recap of this Maine-based wheelchair sports camp

Video #3: Adult camp respite at Camp Independence

Another fabulous summer camp for adults with disabilities is Camp Independence, a camp in the boonies of Pennsylvania that’s then serving adults with disabilities since 1971. It is also the only overnight summer camp for adults with disabilities in the entire state of Pennsylvania.

In this video from MossRehab, several campers are interviewed asking why they like to go each year. “Because I didn’t fit in high school,” “Because I don’t have to spend a lot of energy trying to be normal while I’m here;” a week at this camp can be a truly powerful experience.

From adapted badminton to accessible hiking trails, Camp Independence has created an entirely accessible camping experience. It costs $590 a week, but scholarships are available. Watch this great video of Camp Independence

You’re never too young to go to summer camp, and when you have a disability even more so. More anyone need we break from our daily routines, which can be rather difficult and tedious. Summer camp simply provides a nature-inspired peace of mind that you can’t get from anywhere else.

Now get out there and sign up for a summer camp before it’s too late.

Find an accessible summer camp near you

What do you enjoy most at summer camp?

Watch the videos!

Woman throws a tomahawk and hits the bullseye from her wheelchair at Camp Bullseye

Learn from Paralympians at Wheelchair Camp in Pineland

Camp Independence for adults with disabilities

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Ultra Accessible Yosemite (Yay accessible national parks!)

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No other National Park comes close to what Yosemite offers as an accessible national park, and we have both Teddy Roosevelt and Justin Dart to thank. Amazing nature and accessibility combined. It took a lot of advocating to make Yosemite a reality, and it’s stunning.

And the park offers so much in the way of accessibility. It has several miles of accessible trails, viewing areas and new ADA projects are always starting. You can reconnect with nature in an amazing way here at Yosemite, and they even offer extreme accessible activities on-site.

Enticed? Here are four awesome videos showing why you should put Yosemite on your bucket list if you have a SCI.

Our first video comes from one of the most coolest disabled travelers you’ll ever meet – Ashley Lynn Olson, a fabulous 30 year old from California (she’s been a paraplegic since she was 14). And her rockin’ site, WheelchairTraveling.com, contains a cornucopia of videos stylin’ and profilin’ her travels. One of her favorite places near home is Yosemite, and she has a few videos showing off this very special place.

In her tour, she gives a 9 minute “walking” tour of some of the accessible trails on Yosemite’s Valley Floor, where there over 12 miles of accessible trails. She gives a shout out to the one non-accessible trail, which is rather funny. I think my favorite part about this video is the 1st person aspect. It really feels like you’re with her as she tours Yosemite. And she also shows the infamous giant Sequoia tree at Yosemite – the Grizzly – an 1,800 year old tree. Take her Yosemite Valley Floor tour

And a really cool more recent video she made shows her and three other paraplegics going zip-lining through the gorgeous Red Firs and ancient Sequoias that are everywhere over this massive 1,190 sq. ft park. They were able to go thanks to Zip Yosemite. Watch them zip away like flying squirrels

Powerchair-users can especially rock out hard at Yosemite, and “hoof it” so-to-speak on some of the trails. They may not be paved, but they’re smooth enough to ride on, as this video proves. In his video, a quad has his camera strapped to the bottom of his chair as he climbs Yosemite’s infamous Pothole dome, a smooth granite dome. Watch him dominate Pothole dome

Do you like awesomely funny hippies with long beards who can’t stop laughing? Then you’ll love this video of “Hungrybear” as he gives a tour of one of the sweetest trails at Yosemite – the one that gets the closest to the Lower Yosemite waterfall. You get so close you can feel the spray of the waterfall. Now that’s pretty awesome. Watch Hungrybear give a tour of the trail

Ready to head to Yosemite? Keep in mind as it is with any state or national park that you need to reserve way, way ahead; especially when it comes to snagging an accessible site. Yosemite reservations can sometimes book out 1 year ahead, so definitely keep this in mind when planning on visiting this or any other amazing accessible national parks.

Read the Yosemite Accessibility Guide

Have you been to Yosemite? What are your must-see’s? Have you been to other accessible national parks?

Watch the videos about accessible national parks!

Ashley Lynn’s goes exploring on Yosemite’s Valley Floor’s trails

Four paraplegics go zip-lining at Yosemite

Guy in a powerchair climbing Yosemite’s Pothole dome

Awesome guy shows the incredibly accessible Lower Yosemite Falls trail

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