Burke Rehabilitation Hospital encourages people of all abilities to take part in physical activities such as sports and exercise. Through our Therapeutic Recreation department, Burke offers several adaptive sports programs for people with disabilities. These include:
Adaptive Sports Seminars
For people interested in learning more about taking part in adaptive sports, Burke hosts a number of seminars throughout the year that focus on various aspects of adaptive sports. These can include explanations on what adaptive sports are, where they are available, how people can take part, and the benefits of staying active through sports.
Check Burke's community calendar for future adaptive sports seminars or contact the Therapeutic Recreation department at (914) 597-2248.
Adaptive Alpine Skiing Clinic
In partnership with Leaps of Faith Water Skiing Club (LOF) in Sandy Hook, CT, Burke offers adaptive alpine skiing opportunities several times annually. No experience is necessary and people of all ages, abilities and physical function are encouraged to participate. All skiing and safety equipment are provided. The clinics are held at Mt. Southington, 396 Mount Vernon Rd., in Plainsville, CT.
Check Burke's community calendar for future alpine skiing events or contact the Therapeutic Recreation department at (914) 597-2248.
Adaptive Water Skiing Clinic
In partnership with Leaps of Faith Water Skiing Club (LOF) in Sandy Hook, CT, Burke offers adaptive waterskiing opportunities several times annually. No experience is required and people of all ages, abilities and physical function are encouraged to take part. All skiing and safety equipment are provided. The clinics are held at LOF, 90 Housatonic Drive in Sandy Hook.
Check Burke's community calendar for future water skiing events or contact the Therapeutic Recreation department at (914) 597-2248.
First Swing Golf Clinic
Burke hosts an annual golf clinic for therapists, golf professionals and physically challenged individuals each May. The First Swing Adaptive Golf Clinics are for individuals with a disability, as well as Golf Professionals and Recreational, Physical, and Occupational Therapists. The First Swing Program is designed to train therapists and other rehabilitation team professionals to teach and encourage people with disabilities to learn or re-learn the game of golf.
The First Swing Adaptive Golf Clinics are designed to help participants learn how to overcome challenges with general golfing. The clinics teach the appropriate golf club grip, how to assume the proper stance and address ball set-up and balance. Elements of the seated and standing swing are taught, along with demonstrations of adaptive equipment. For more information, please contact Deirdre Otto, Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist at (914) 597-2355.
Hand Cycling Clinics
In conjunction with other adaptive sports groups such as Achilles International, Burke hosts several hand cycling clinics on its main campus. Participants are able to try hand-cycling on a variety of bikes using a closed track.
Participants should have enough upper body strength/movement to move the hand pedals, but beginners are welcome. There will be many experienced bikers and therapists on-hand to assist people with getting on and off the bikes, as well as aid in using the bikes.
Check our community calendar for future hand cycling clinics or contact the Therapeutic Recreation department at (914) 597-2248.
Wheelchair Table Tennis
Burke Rehabilitation Hospital has had a wheelchair table tennis program since 1980, attracting players for competition, exercise and camaraderie from the greater New York metropolitan area. Training and coaching is provided by professional coach Peizhen Shao, who was the Women’s National Champion in China for three successive years. She instructs players on an individual basis. Burke athletes have competed in the Paralympic Games in Athens, Sydney, Atlanta, Barcelona, and Seoul, winning Gold, Silver and Bronze medals.
A group of able-bodied volunteers train and compete along with players who have a disability. New members are always welcome! Free practice sessions for disabled people are held year-round on Saturdays from 2 to 6 p.m. There is no charge to join the team , but we ask that players register. Signed parental permission is required for all players under 18 years of age.
If you are interested in any of the above programs, please contact Alexandra Oudheusden, director of Therapeutic Recreation at 914-597-2248 or by email Aoudheusden@burke.org. Burke also has an e-mail list for Adaptive Sports opportunities; if you would like to be added to the list, please email Alexandra with your request.
Adaptive Sports are sports played by persons with a disability including physical and intellectual disabilities.
Many of these are based on existing sports and simply modified to meet the special needs of persons with a disability.
Adaptive sports such as the First Swing Golf Clinic foster a sense of inclusion to many who otherwise would not participate in the sport.