Blind, visually impaired kids gear up for Accessible Ski Day at Perfect North

Many kids don’t know that they can still participate in the same activities as their sighted friends, and Clovernook Center is working to let them know that they can
Blind & visually impaired kids gear up for accessible ski day at Perfect North
Published: Feb. 18, 2023 at 11:37 PM EST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

LAWRENCEBURG, Ind. (WXIX) - On Saturday at Perfect North Slopes, blind and visually impaired kids were skiing with the aid of volunteers thanks to something called adaptive sports.

Clovernook Center’s Adaptive Sports Coordinator Dez Scruggs said that “some kids may not be able to see the boards they are skiing on, some kids may not be able to see the hill that they are going down. But being paired with the right person makes it a lot easier which is called ‘adaptive,’ so like they are able to adapt skiing for each kid to enjoy it the proper way.”

Adaptive sports are precisely that: sports and recreational activities with slight adaptations so people with visual impairment can enjoy them. For skiing, it means 2:1 student-teacher instruction with the use of guide poles or a lead instructor skiing backward, giving instruction to a child as they go down the hill.

Of course, adaptive sports go beyond skiing. Blind tennis, for example, the adaptation is a larger, bright yellow ball with a bell inside plus a two or three-bounce rule. There’s also a sport called goalball, which is the most popular team sport for the blind and visually impaired that requires ear-hand coordination.

Scruggs also discussed the impact having events like this has on blind and visually impaired children, sharing that he also is visually impaired, “...these events are great because these events weren’t always the case [when he was a kid]. There wasn’t always anyone to teach you how to play a sport or work with you in various, differences of sports, so I think that having these events give kids the sense of encouragement, give kids motivation, give kids the boost of self-esteem.”

“Don’t limit your child to nothing... let your child know that since you lost your vision, you didn’t lose your sight,” said Scruggs.

If you are interested in learning more about Clovernook Center, including more about adaptive sports and future events, click here.

See a spelling or grammar error in our story? Please include the title when you click here to report it.