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Paraplegic Winter Sit-skiing




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#1 Anniebean

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 12:41 PM

A friend of ours is a fairly recent paraplegic and we are trying to persuade her to come skiing with us as she did pre injury. She seems a bit reluctant (perhaps she just doesn't want to come on holiday with us!) and I thought if I could present her with some options I might be able to bring her round.

I see that some of you ski - do any of you know of resorts with ski schools for wheelchair users? Thought of Winter Park in Colorado where you see a lot of disabled skiers but my husband got severe altitude sickness last time we went there and we don't want to go through that again! Any suggestions gratefully recieved, in Europe preferably. Also are there any holiday companies you would recommend who cater for mixed wheelchair/able bodied groups.

Thanks

Annie

#2 Gary Anderson

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 12:54 PM

Hi Anniebean

It may not be that your friend does not want to go on holiday with you. It could be that she is embarrassed about not being able to ski in the able bodied way.

I used to ski prior to my accident 18 years ago and have not been NEAR a ski slope since. Why? Well, I have a cauda equina injury and to be honest, the thought of ski-ing using elbow crutch supports just does not appeal to me. So, that was my reason for not taking it back up. My mate is T10 para and does not like ski-ing on what is really a bucket on skis. Each to their own. For me, I can stand and walk on 2 sticks but dont ask me to use crutches to ski. That is a different matter.

My mates tried to encourage me to go and, indeed, I do - but for the apres ski. I dont think it was a bad habit I got into, it just was not made available to me at the time of my accident (it was 18 years ago) and by the time it DID come around, I did not have the confidence necessary to try it.

The best person to give advice on ski-ing holiday is Russ who comes on here regularly. Colorado is the best one that I know of because it deals with the "wounded warriors" (USA soldiers returning from Iraq) and provides disabled holidays for them.

I am sure that if you are in the UK then there must be tour operator somewhere who can provide able body/disabled locations.

Edited by Gary Anderson, 18 September 2006 - 12:56 PM.

ALWAYS REMEMBER - The darkest hour is only 60 minutes long and what won't kill you will make you stronger.

cauda equina lesion resulting in lack of ability to walk. Spinal cord undamaged and intact. NOW ABLE TO HOBBLE AROUND ON 2 STICKS AFTER LOADS OF PHYSIO.

#3 DaveP

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 12:54 PM

Hi Annie

This is something I've been looking into but haven't set anything up yet. However, it's nothing too complicated and I'm sure you guys could still go on your normal water skiing holidays together.

Contact the British Disabled Water Ski Assoc - http://www.bdwsa.org.uk/ - as they're the ones that can help you.

I've water skied a few times but as I'm a tetraplegic I need special gloves to help with grip, larger ski poll etc but as you're friend is a paraplegic, all she needs is a sit-ski. Maybe she can rent one so you can go on holiday.

Kick her arse and don't let her get in to bad habits already. Drag her, even if she screams and kicks - she'll thank you in the end!

#4 wriggley

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 03:39 PM

as im sure russ will tell you skiing is one of the best things ive done since viewing life from a lower perspective. try this www.disabilitysnowsport.org.uk it some good info or ask the backup trust where they go. Im sure russ can point you in the right direction. Iwent skiing for the first time ever in february in winterpark and to be honest i can wait to get back. I totally caught the bug

Although you can always say to your friend that the first time you go on holiday she doesnt have to ski just enjoy the apres ski :clap:
There are 10 kinds of people in this world, those who understand binary and those who don't


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#5 russ1

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 04:04 PM

Dave - I think this is a snow ski question - Winter Park is the clue - it's a snow ski resort, that and the altitude bit :clap: .

Annie - I'd definately have recommended the nscd at Winter Park but there are a few resorts in Europe that do it. There's a centre in Avoriaz. http://www.avoriazal...tskicourse.html and I've seen this lot advertising but know nothing about them. Backup ski in Combloux so there must be a centre there too. It's the instruction that is key. She can probably aim to be skiing at the same level of difficulty and the same speed as pre injury after a couple of years although I've seen some guys go from the nursery slopes to the black runs in 4 days. They're generally the lower or incomplete injuries though and that is the exception.

Your best bet is probably to contact disability snowsport uk
who have an advice line and will be able to advise first hand on Europe.

However if you friend want's to try skiing in a non pressure atmosphere with other paraplegics the backup trust take people just like her every winter and if you get in touch now they'll be sending out the application forms for this winter's programs soon. It may be a better bet for a first go at sit skiing as I'm sure she'll have reservations about just what she will and won't be able to do and the effect it'll have on your holiday. One year later she'll be leaving you for dust! and the whole thing of going with a group is brilliant - there's a big peer support thing and just seeing and talking to other paras regarless of the skiiing side of things is great - especially for relatively newly injured people.

Gary - FWIW you'd almost certainly have been put in a sit ski rather than being asked to ski with crutches. It seems to be the way most people with impaired leg function go purely because it's just so much fun and especially if you can control your hips pretty easy to pick up.
Russ - T2complete

#6 DaveP

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 04:10 PM

Dave - I think this is a snow ski question - Winter Park is the clue - it's a snow ski resort, that and the altitude bit :clap: .


With such obvious clues like that, I'd never make it as a detective! lol

How about the new indoor ski slope in Dubai - I'd like to know what that's like...

Edited by DaveP, 18 September 2006 - 04:11 PM.


#7 Anniebean

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Posted 18 September 2006 - 04:45 PM

Thanks guys - Russ especially - I'll let you know how I get on!

#8 Gary Anderson

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Posted 19 September 2006 - 06:44 AM

All the best with the holiday Anniebean.

Russ - FWIW - I do realise that sit ski-ing would have been most appropriate, however, sitting, on crutches, whatever, it just did not have the same appeal to me. If I could not do it the "able bodied" way then I did not want to do it at all. I still enjoy the apres ski though!
ALWAYS REMEMBER - The darkest hour is only 60 minutes long and what won't kill you will make you stronger.

cauda equina lesion resulting in lack of ability to walk. Spinal cord undamaged and intact. NOW ABLE TO HOBBLE AROUND ON 2 STICKS AFTER LOADS OF PHYSIO.

#9 Shambles

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Posted 25 September 2006 - 04:27 PM

Hi, I"M ACTUALLY INVOLVED WITH THE BACK UP TRUST AND HAVE BEEN TAKING GROUPS TO ARE<SWEDEN FOR OVER 10 YEARS> WE HAVE TAKEN ANYBODY UP FOR IT FROM L4'S TO VENTED C1'S. AS RUSS SAID, GREAT PEER SUPPORT, FIND OUT WHAT'S INVOLVED AND YOU'LL BE OFF ON YOUR OWN TRIPS WITH ALL THE INFORMATION AND CONFIDENCE YOU NEED. THERE ARE SO MANY ADAPTIVE PROGRAMS AROUND NSCD,COLORADO AND TOTAL SKI SCHOOL, SWEDEN PROBABLY THE BEST. I'VE SKIIED WITH WHISTLER ADAPTIVE IN CANADA, AND FOUND A GREAT INSTRUCTOR IN MORZINE, FRANCE HAPPY TO TEACH A C6 IN A TESSIER DUAL SKI. I THINK IT YOU'LL NOT REGRET STRUGGLING FOR A TRIP OR TWO, FOR A FUTURE LIFETIME'S WORTH OF SKIING. BETTER TO PARTICIPATE, THAN SPECTATE.

GOOD LUCK.

#10 DaveP

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Posted 26 September 2006 - 02:40 PM

Hi Russ

Can I pick your brains please? Where can I find snow-mobiles for rent?

I'd like to go away over Xmas/New-Year and always fancied going on a snow mobile. I''ve tried to find info in Andorra and Southern France but not got any replies to the many emails I've sent. I've found accessible accommodation but no info on rental of snow mobiles...

Any ideas?

#11 russ1

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Posted 26 September 2006 - 07:42 PM

Dave

I'm really not the right person to ask with regard to anything in Europe as I've never skied in Europe (pre or post SCI) In the states the back-up groups usually go snow mobiling but that's usually organised once we get there and I've not personally participated preferring to spend the rest day in bed and in the hot tub rather than pulling on my cold weather gear once more.

Hope you have some luck I'm told it's a scream and we had a C7 tetra go a couple of years back.

You could try the disability snowsport uk advice line linked further up -I bet they have members who've done it in europe.

Edited by russ1, 26 September 2006 - 07:44 PM.

Russ - T2complete

#12 Shambles

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Posted 27 September 2006 - 10:59 AM

think i might have left the caps lock on! whoops! got an email advising oversight. sorry. shambles

#13 xMaddiex

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Posted 09 October 2006 - 03:40 PM

as for places to ski post-sci...yeah, i'd say winter park is pretty good...and whistler, near Vancouver in Canada, that has a disabled ski school, and there are two mountains...i've not yet been to somewhere in Europe that has a ski school for disabled people...but there are a lot of disabled skiiers nevertheless. but places in the Us and Canada do seem to have more disability appeal, as such.

#14 Texaswheelz

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Posted 12 October 2006 - 08:03 PM

Breckenridge in Colorado is also a nice spot with great lessons. I don't know about in Europe either but in the USA pretty much every major ski town with slopes also has snow mobile rentals. My parents had a house up in Northern New Mexico when I was first injured and we bought a snow mobile. Damn it was a blast, our house was on a golf course that was covered by a few feet of snow in winter so it was wide open with nice dips and such for jumping. If I were to go to the Mtns this winter and have the choice between skiing or riding a snow mobile all day I'd have a hard time choosing between the two.

#15 Anniebean

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Posted 15 January 2007 - 11:32 AM

Hi,

Just been looking at the snow reports (should really be working) and thought I would wish any skiers a happy season!

We are off to Austria in February - sadly we didn't manage to persuade Pip to ski this year (with or without us) but she was really interested in the BackUp stuff so we are hopeful that she will give it a go in due course. She quite liked the idea of waterskiing too.

So thanks for all your help and have a great time. Lets hope that snow keeps falling!

Annie

#16 charliechalk

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Posted 06 January 2008 - 10:59 PM

I know of a ski school in Alpbach in Austria that do sit-skiing lessons. The guy that runs the ski school used to run the French ski team (I think) and then he broke his back and is wheelchair bound now.

"Alpbach-Inneralpbach Ski School (0043 5336 5515, www.skischule-alpbach.at) is still run by the legendary teacher and ex-racer Sepp Margreiter, who is now confined to a "sit-ski" after breaking his spine in a logging accident. Six 4hr group lessons, £86; private lesson, £103 for four hours."

WASP in Whistler is a great programme with fantastic staff.

Sun Valley (or is it Sun Peaks) in Kamloops, Canada, apparently doesn't charge anything for ski passes for disabled people. One of the BC coaches told me this a few weeks ago but I haven't been able to confirm it for myself yet...

I'm hoping to head off down to Vail in the next few weeks, probably for a month or so... :licklips:

#17 charliechalk

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Posted 06 January 2008 - 11:07 PM

Russ - FWIW - I do realise that sit ski-ing would have been most appropriate, however, sitting, on crutches, whatever, it just did not have the same appeal to me. If I could not do it the "able bodied" way then I did not want to do it at all. I still enjoy the apres ski though!

Hey Gary, I'm dependent on crutches, gave snowboarding a go the other week but that quickly went to pot... and then I tried sit-skiing and it was amazing. Such fun! And I met a fair number of fully-able-bodied people who were using them too - simply because of how much fun they are!

Obviously each to their own though! :licklips:

#18 megatrig

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Posted 23 January 2008 - 07:19 PM

Winter Park is a great place to go but if not a possibility well......

Friends now live in France and they are big skiers.

They were in the Pyranees the other week and thought it was very well set up too.

I bow to Russ's better knowledge though!! lol

oh

As an afterthought her reticence to coming with you might be that she might be thinking she will be a burden on you and spoilyour holiday!!

Just a thought!

Also as a new injury how many foreign hols has she taken?

Has she been aeway with you lot as a group before?

Lots of reasons why she might want or NOT want to go!
Life is just to short not to have fun!



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