AIRS – Making the Impossible Possible Through Adapted Sports

December 10th, 2013 | By Gary No Comments

AIRS---Adaptive-Sports

By Shelby Robison and Morgan Nicholls,
students in the UGA Health Promotion & Behavior program

When you think of athletes playing sports like soccer or baseball, whom do you picture playing? Now, think of these players blindfolded or in wheelchairs. It changes the whole game, right?

Athens Inclusive Recreation and Sports (AIRS) is an organization in the community that provides the opportunity for people with intellectual and/or physical disabilities to play sports. The AIRS mission is to make the seemingly impossible possible through adapted sports. There is nothing that cannot be done solely because an individual is differently-abled.

A big part of AIRS’ mission is that they are inclusive, meaning they welcome individuals with typical abilities as well as those with disabilities to participate in their adapted sports programs. AIRS’ aims their programs to promoting a greater quality of life for its participants. Having a disability should not put a barrier up, as we are all part of one community. Participants with typical abilities will expand their understanding and recognize the challenges to be overcome by the differently-abled population in the community.

Our June-July 2013 issue of MOVE featured an article about beep baseball – an adaptive way to play America’s favorite pastime. There is even a World Series for this sport! This is one of the many sports offered through AIRS. In fact, the AIRS beep baseball team went to the 2013 Beep Baseball World Series and overcame many adversities, coming in ranked in last place and winning multiple games. A few other sports include beep kickball, power soccer, goal ball, wheelchair basketball, wheelchair tennis, and even kayaking! Find out more about each specific sport and the rules at the AIRS website, www.airs-ga.org.

Volunteers and players are currently being recruited in each of the sports listed above. AIRS does not want there to be a separation between those with disabilities and those with typical abilities. If you are typically-abled, AIRS will provide blindfolds, wheelchairs, and anything else necessary so you can play each sport that is offered. The AIRS organization is also looking for more people to get involved.

So contact AIRS today to sign up to play any of the adapted sports, volunteer to help run various events, or donate to a great cause to support our community. Build relationships with others in the community through sports and fun for everyone!

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