Barrier-Free Recreational and Competitive Opportunities
The athletic programs run year-round and include sled hockey, cycling, martial arts, swimming and more. Equipment is available to borrow for a nominal fee, such as: hand-cycles, sport wheelchairs, and bowling equipment. Social outings include movies, dinners, or concerts.
A membership fee of $50 per year is requested to help offset program and equipment costs. Members receive reduced rates on activities, special events, and equipment loans.
Adaptive bowling takes place at Shaker Bowl, 168 Shaker Road in East Longmeadow. We have several bowling ramps and balls with no holes to use on the ramps. Volunteers assist by retrieving balls if participants are unable to lift them from the ball return themselves. We have access to light weight balls for those who are ambulatory and want to play. Staff are trained to help with visually impaired athletes as well. Bowling takes place year-round. Open to children and adults. Only $2.75 per game.
Mondays 9am-11am, Tuesdays 12:30pm- 2:30pm
Dance & Movement (Registration for fall classes begins in July of 2018)
An adaptive dance program is a creative movement or dance program, which has been tailored to best meet the individual needs of children who are confronting various challenges. It works to create an open environment in which every child can participate regardless of ability, and it integrates various components that may not be seen in a traditional dance or movement program. The program is $265 which includes: the dance program, a membership to Disability Resources, costume, trophies/medals, and an end of the year pizza party. We participate in a variety of performances throughout the year, such as UMass Udance for the Children’s Miracle Network. We also participate in three shows with our partner studio, Ohana School of Performing Arts. The dance program is at 85 Interstate Drive, West Springfield on Thursday evenings from 5:45p-6:45p
Martial Arts, regardless of a physical or intellectual disability, the sport is a GREAT way to get exercise while building strength, improving coordination, flexibility, and making new friends! Some upper arm strength is required. Open to individuals ages 4 – 22 that have a physical disability, developmental disability, and/or visual impairment. Must have some mobility in arms or legs. Master Ken teaches about respect, focus, and coordination. He focuses on board breaking and learning the repetitive martial art movements. After each session, participants earn the next level belt or a piece of tape that gets them closer to the next belt!
The program is held on Tuesdays, located at the Center for Martial Arts & Fitness, 22 Center St, Chicopee, MA.
Next program is January 15, 2019-March 5, 2019
Kids’ session ages 4-13 5:45pm – 6:30pm
Young adult/adult session ages 14+ 6:30pm – 7:15pm
DR Members – $65
Non-members – $75
Open to anyone 4 years old and over with some upper body strength. This program is for beginners and advanced climbers. We have the belayers…we just need the climbers!
The program is held at Central Rock Gym, 165 Russell St., Hadley, Ma
For information on Rock Climbing times and dates, please check our newsletter!
Sled Hockey – Springfield Thunderbirds Sled Hockey Team
Sled hockey is an exciting ice sport that allows individuals with physical disabilities to enjoy the great sport of hockey. It is very similar to “stand-up hockey” in terms of concept and rules. The main difference is that instead of standing up to skate, participants sit on their skates using an adaptive device known as a sled, which is affixed with two skate blades and a runner in the front to form a tripod. The other main difference is that in sled hockey, participants use two shortened hockey sticks with a blade on one end and a pick (similar to the end of a figure skate) on the other end, which enables them to propel themselves across the ice much like in cross country skiing. Hard checking, elevated puck shooting, and 60-mile an hour slap shots are as much a part of sled hockey as they are in “stand-up” hockey.
Anyone with a disability that would prevent them from participating in “stand-up hockey” is a candidate for sled hockey. It is a sport that allows players with mobility limitations & lower limb mobility impairments to play, and requires great upper-body strength, balance, and the ability to handle the puck. Even able-bodied individuals enjoy the sport of sled hockey and can play on a team.
We play half the time at Mass Mutual Center and the other half at Olympia Ice Center in West Springfield.
If you are between the ages of 4-17 years old, you can join the Springfield Thunderbird Junior Sled Hockey team. Players 17 years & above, the Springfield Thunderbird Sled Hockey Recreation team is the team for you. Players on the recreation team can try out to become part of the Springfield Thunderbird Sled Hockey travel team! The travel team competes in the Northeastern Sled Hockey League. All players (including juniors) need to become members of USA Hockey in order to play in the league.
The teams rely heavily on in-kind and financial donations because each player is specially fitted to their equipment. Ice time and sleds are purchased by the program and members pay just a small fee to play for the season: Adults $265; Children $165. We try to keep the costs low for participants who may be facing financial hardship due to medical expenses and the cost of living. Donations are always welcome.
All members of Disability Resources are welcome to participate in social activities. We encourage members to be social and meet new people. We try to go out to dinner once a month somewhere affordable and accessible. We try to choose restaurants on the PVTA bus line. Participants pay on their own. We also have movie theater outings, card games and pizza, etc. Periodically, we pull together a like-minded group of participants for regular meetings for several weeks, such as the Young Adult Program.
CHD/WNE Aquatic Swimming Program
Together with Western New England University OT Doctorate Program, we are offering two different play-based therapeutic pool programs. Students volunteer their time to work 1:1 with our participants. One for kids and adults with disabilities and another specifically for kids with autism. This is also a student run program, we expect the swimmers to attend all of the sessions.
Western New England University, Alumni Healthful Living Center, Evergreen Road, Springfield
Session 1: 6:30pm-7:30pm – Kids and Adults with Disabilities – January 31, 2019-March 7, 2019
Session 2: 6:30pm-7:30pm – Autism Specific Program – March 28, 2019-May 2, 2019
Per 6 week session: $25 for members/ $45 for non-members
Springfield College Swim Program
Springfield College students in the adaptive PE program work 1:1 with the swimmers. This program is to help the students gain a better understanding of different abilities. This is also a student run program, we expect the swimmers to attend all of the sessions since this is a class for the students. Thank you for your understanding
**Not intended to be swim lessons
***Participants may only sign up for 1 swim program at this time (CHD/WNE Session 1, CHD/WNE Session 2, OR Springfield College Swim) due to the high demand.
CHD’s Disability Resources is open to everyone – especially those who have served our country. We are willing to work with a Vet’s Organization or a group of Vet’s to create a Veteran specific program. This could be an ongoing program or one-time event. If you have an idea or want to start a discussion, please email email@example.com or call Jess at 413-788-9695.
Winter Skiing & Water Skiing
Snow and water Skiing takes place through the Leaps of Faith Adaptive Skiers (LOF) organization. The water-skiing program is held in Sandy Hook Connecticut a few times a year in the warmer months. The winter skiing takes place during the week a few times in the winter on Mount Southington in CT. The program’s include mono-skiing, bi-skiing, sit skiing, blind skiing, 3-track skiing (winter), and 4-track skiing (winter). We try to make it work no matter what the participant’s ability. All adaptive equipment is available, but pre-registration is required.
Interested in skiing more or somewhere else? Check out this website which covers a whole range of options across the USA and Canada: https://www.vouchercloud.com/resources/adaptive-skiing-resource
Other Great Social Activities
- Field Trips / Social Nights / Holiday Parties
- Disc Golf / Frisbee Golf / Frolf!
- Picnics / BBQ’s