Executive Director Notes


Spring/Summer 2015

Thursday, June 18, 2015

About four years ago we helped start an adaptive padding program in Maui with the Kihei Outrigger Canoe Club. One of our trainers, Connor Shea spent a year working with the club alongside volunteers and a charismatic leader, Kimokeo Kapahulehua. Hanna Lilley and I have given yearly training sessions to the club as the program has grown.

I just visited the program and discovered that they are doing incredibly well. Dozens of paddlers show each month and the staff is terrific. Watching them work from a distance this year, I saw some of our adaptations and techniques being incorporated into the program that has a spirit of its own. 

What's truly remarkable to me is that first, this Outrigger club in Maui, where Outrigger Paddling is the state sport, incorporates our methodology in their program. That is, somehow, our reputation as innovators and experts in working with people with challenges, holds weight in Hawaii. I come to this club to learn more about paddling. These are incredible paddlers for sure. But they took in our methods and adaptations for teaching people with challenges.

Second, this program in Maui is thriving. They don't teach exactly as we do, but they took our best and incorporated that into their best. This is incredibly inspiring. 

In short, AccesSportAmerica is part of an incredible community in our home of Boston, Massachusetts. We are also a part of a much greater community and we do have something to offer other programs. Our In-School program can work in other cities, our Gait Training program will soon be ready to be used outside of our gyms, and we continue to train and share with programs around this country on adaptations and protocols.

We hope you'll be a part of this larger community as well.

Ross Lilley,

President/Executive Director