Monday, June 28, 2010

Should Wheelchairs Be Allowed In Saunas?

A friend recently told me that in some saunas in Spas and Thermal Baths, wheelchair users are not allowed to bring their own wheelchair with them. The reason is that wheelchair users take their wheelchairs inside and outside and bring dirt into the spa and eventually into the sauna. While I can understand that managers of saunas and thermal baths struggle to keep their saunas clean and hygienic, what about the issues of accessibility for wheelchair users? Don’t wheelchair users have the right of equal accessibility?

The answer of course, is yes, wheelchair users should be allowed to bring their wheelchair into a health spa or thermal bath. But it also appropriate to take measures to keep the Spa or Thermal Bath clean and hygienic. Saunas are meant to be used by all people, able bodied and disabled.
One compromise is for the spa to have some wheelchair tire covers and require that wheelchair users put the wheelchair tire covers on the wheelchair wheels when they come inside. The wheelchair tire covers will keep the spa area clean and allow equal accessibility for everyone.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Best Wheelchair Exercises

Here is an interesting statistic: 25.6% of persons with a disability reported being physically inactive during a usual week compared with 12.8% of those without a disability.

Being in a wheelchair should not be a barrier to activity.

First, there are some excellent wheelchair exercises. These Wheelchair Exercises include wheelchair aerobics, wheelchair weight lifting and excercise equipment designed specifically for wheelchair users.

Second, there are a great number of wheelchair sports as can be seen from these wheelchair sports videos. Or check out this site for some ideas of wheelchair sports.

If you dont like the idea of wheelchair excercise or an organized wheelchair sport, why not create your own wheelchair sport like Aaron Fotheringham did?

Friday, June 18, 2010

What Do You Consider Disabled?

Aaron Fotheringham asks a very good question:
What do YOU consider disabled?
Are you disabled?
Can you do this?

Aaron can't walk very well, but he can sure fly!!
Aaron says to everyone, disabled and able-bodied alike:

When life gives you limits

See more about Aaron Fotheringham

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Rocket Bob Gullickson: The First To Exceed 100 mph In A Wheelchair?

Wheelchair Sport Fans and Extreme Wheelchair Sport Enthusiasts take note, Rocket Bob Gullickson is planning to go where no wheelchair user has gone before. Rocket Bob, a paraplegic, is strapping some rockets to a wheelchair and hoping to exceed 100 mph.

I contacted Rocket Bob and asked for more details. He sent me a few pics which you will find on this post with the accompanying note:

We are going to begin bench testing of the hydrogen peroxide rocket motor within the next few weeks. There is no current record Guinness record for what I am attempting to do. The people at Guinness started a new category to accommodate the rocket wheelchair.

My hope is for triple digit speed but I really have no idea what the machine will be capable of achieving safely.

I have attached a couple pictures of me with the chair and one of just the chair. Keep in mind these photos are not what it will look like by the time I make the land speed world record. It will be stripped of all non-speed essential equipment and things added for aerodynamics and stability as well as safety.

You can easily keep up to date with my activities on facebook Rocket Bob Gullickson or come and witness our event on Sunday September 5th at Brainerd International Raceway during The Muscle Car Shootout event right before the drag race finals.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Mobility Scooters On A Budget

If you are in the market for a mobility scooter, but you are on a tight budget, there are two interesting options available.

First, there is a growing market for used mobility scooters. If you buy a used mobility scooter from a reputable dealer, you can save alot of money. Mobility scooters are relatively simple and other than the fact that the battery will need to be replaced every couple of years, there often is not alot of mainenence. A quality used mobility scooter can save you 50% off the purchase price of a new mobility scooter.

The second option is to buy a new cheap mobility scooter. You may or may not be aware but you can buy a quality new mobility scooter starting from $500. To be sure, these are small mobility scooters and will be uncomfortable for someone who is very tall or very large. However, some people will prefer a new cheap mobility scooter to owning a used mobility scooter.

Regardless of whether you prefer a used mobility scooter or a new cheap mobility scooter, a mobility scooter is an interesting option for people with disabilities who are on tight budgets.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Endeavor Games: This Weekend in Edmond Oklahoma

If you will be anywhere near Edmond Oklahoma this weekend, Jun 10, 2010 - Jun 13, 2010, get out and support the athletes at the 2010 Endeavor Games. The Endeavor Games is a nationally recognized competition for athletes with physical disabilities of all ages and abilities. This year, the Endeavor games will welcome a record 475 participants in 11 sport competitions from 30 states and four countries, including a large number of wounded service men and women who are both learning and mastering adaptive sports. Athletes from 6 to 60 years of age will compete against other athletes with similar disabilities in 11 sport competitions and 10 clinics. Events include power lifting, table tennis, wheelchair basketball, swimming, sitting volleyball, cycling, archery, track and field and shooting.

For example, There will be the first ever adaptive rock climbing clinic to be held at Rocktown Climbing Gym in Oklahoma City, OK. The clinic will be held on Friday June 11, from 11:45 am – 5 pm and will include one-on-one instruction.

Read more about the Endeavor Games

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Interview With Brock Waidmann

I have been ranting for quite some time about the injustice of Hollywood Producers casting able bodied actors to play disabled characters. Many people, including myself, have been calling on Hollywood Producers to cast actors with disabilities in roles for characters with disabilities or to go one step further and cast actors with disabilities in roles where the disability is not even part of the story line.

Recently, I learned that the Producers of a new TV show which will soon be coming to NBC have done just that. The people behind tha new Paul Reiser Show have cast a young actor named Brock Waidmann to play one of Paul's two sons on the show.

I contacted Brock and asked for an interview and learned something else. Brock is a delightful and very interesting young man. Read this interview with Brock Waidmann and find out why.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Memory Keeper's Daughter: A Powerful Movie About The Misperception of Disabilities

Memory Keeper's Daughter is a very powerful tragedy about misperceptions of disabilities. The main character, Dr David Henry gives away his daughter at birth. and tells his wife that their daughter died. His justification for his actions is that his daughter has Down Syndrome, and his sister who also had Down Syndrome died in her teens. He considers Down Syndrome a terminal illness and prefers to save himself and his wife the pain of raising a child who will die at a young age. The problem for Dr. Henry is that, though he is not aware of it, Down Syndrome is not a terminal illness and people with Down Syndrome can and do live a very long time, thank you very much. In fact, in recent years, the life expectancy for people with Down Syndrome has been rapidly increasing.

Memory Keeper's Daughter underlines the problem with prejudging the impact of a disability. Many people erroneously believe that a disability is the end of the world. Dr David, believed that a dead child was better than a child with Down Syndrome. However, this movie is also about the people who loved the little girl and who could see beyond her disability to the wonderful girl she was and the wonderful woman she would become.

Watch the trailer for Memory Keeper's Daughter:

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Wheelchair Humor : It Does Not Get Better Than This

I have become a fan of Chuck Bittner, a wheelchair user who is also a comedian. Although this brand of humor may not be for everyone, I think that Chuck Bittner is a very talented comedian and I hope that he will go far with his comedy career.

Chuck Bittner's comedy is mostly related to his disability and his wheelchair use, which is going to be highly controversial. But I think Chuck's brand of humor is refreshing and I would love to see a wheelchair user get a break and find work in the world of professional comedy.

I would love to see Chuck Bittner appear on Jay Leno, Conan O'Brien, or Saturday Night Live.

Chuck Bittner has released a new video of a recent comedy performance: