AccesSportAmerica adapts sports that the most agile of athletes can find challenging. Each sport involves sustained physical exertion while promoting better conditioning. Our sports are often viewed as challenging but we ensure success and a degree of independence for everyone.
Since 1983, Ross Lilley has been recognized as a pioneer in the field of adaptive windsurfing - the first to adapt the sport of windsurfing in the United States prior to the founding of AccesSport. Today, we use a wide variety of single hull, catamaran and tri-maran windsurfers to establish comfort for athletes to windsurf within minutes. Most recently, we developed a technique of using stand-up paddle boards alongside single or tandem windsurfers. A trainer on a stand-up paddle board helps to hold up the windsurf sail and the athletes maintain balance. This innovation has led to more independent windsurfing. We use seven styles of adaptive windsurfers in our program. On these boards, we use standers, fixed and swivel seats and one-two sail configurations. Because of our wide range of stability, we can take anyone of any disability on a board with one-three trainers assisting an athlete. Our varied configurations help make this an incredibly safe offering.
Hawaiian Outrigger Canoeing
Canoeing has become one of our leading sports. We primarily use specially designed and adapted Duke four-person outrigger canoes. We also use OC-1s or single person outrigger canoes for those up for the challenge. Each session emphasizes the art of the stroke and the team aspect of outrigger canoeing. Our double hull canoes can be configured to accommodate up to ten athletes and trainers. All of this is done safely using special seats and adaptive one or two-handed paddles. We use two styles of adapted hand paddles and four different adapted seating setups. As in windsurfing, anyone of any dis/ability can participate and be a fully functioning member of the crew.
In collaboration with Gary Piantedosi, former Olympic rower, our adaptations in this sport continue to be innovative. We can use either fixed or sliding seats in our rowing/sculling configurations. Our preference is our sliding seat setup which works on a single or double rowing shell. This seat can be used in conjunction with a partner who helps in the drive and return stages of each stroke. Because of the many repetitions, some athletes rediscover function in their quadriceps or hamstrings.
Stand Up Paddling/Surfing
Since 2003, we have been teaching stand up paddling with great success. We use fiberglass, inflatable boards and ultra wide windsurfers to paddle on flat water and to catch waves. Our teaching frame allows us to connect two boards together, which gives us much more stability and allows us to work alongside athletes, providing stability for both standing and seated paddlers.
Wide, open cockpit kayaks are used for safety. We rely on techniques and existing equipment. We do, however, add our own innovations whenever we see fit, such as outrigger stabilizing devices. We use solo and tandem kayaks. Most of our instructors have been certified by the American Canoe Association for adaptive paddling.
From two to four wheel, hand cycles to recumbent tandems, we make cycling fun and easily accessible. We use existing adaptive cycles and fabricate our own to suit every ability. We have developed several effective techniques to keep athletes peddling while fostering independence. Most recently we've begun to use a stand up paddle skateboard, to assist athletes as they ride on Boston's Esplanade, Charlestown Navy Yard and trails in New England.
Our Soccer & Conditioning program uses soccer as the incentive to train for better conditioning. We've been developing and perfecting game systems for over 20 years. Our sessions are designed to challenge everyone to their utmost, to make every player vital to their teams success, and to safely elevate athletes heart rate for over 30 minutes. Our program begins with core and strength training and ends with conditioning drills and games. All the drills and games are designed specifically to keep individuals moving throughout the whole session. We have an ongoing special relationship with the FC Stars of Massachusetts who consult on our protocols.
Our Tennis & Conditioning program incorporates the traditional teaching methods of the US Professional Tennis Registry with our protocol and equipment innovations. Our Lead Tennis Consultant Wayne Lilley is a USPTR certified tennis professional who developed a tennis program in Nevis, West Indies and has taught at Hilton Head, SC. Our core team of trainers has over 35 years combined experience creating adaptive drills that combine skill development, conditioning, and fun.
We create games and activities to make success possible while holding a high standard of athleticism. We use hand-adaptations and shorter racquets when possible, and advocate for the use of tennis sports wheelchairs to give athletes the height for a more efficient stroke.
For our one-on-one workout sessions, we provide necessary adaptations to accommodate our athletes to existing equipment. Still, we advocate the use of free weights, TRX equipment and pulleys whenever possible to simulate true, real life motion. We use lifting hooks, footplates and grips and fabricate when necessary. We place equal focus on increasing levels in function as well as better aerobic capacity and conditioning. Whenever possible we emphasize a full body work out to enact more cardiovascular involvement. When appropriate we refer athletes to our Gait Training Program.