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ADAPTED WATER SPORTS: A GREAT WAY TO SUPPORT THE INCLUSION OF ALL KINDS OF PEOPLE
Physical activities are increasingly adapted to the needs or abilities of people. But if these physical activities or sports take place in the aquatic environment, the benefits are even more significant. That’s why, since water sports for people with physical or cognitive disabilities are so valuable, we like to include them in our catalogue of classes.
Indeed, from the moment we set up our Water Sports Mallorca school we knew we wanted to make our lessons accessible to all members of the public. Whatever their physical or mental condition, everyone deserves to experience the wellbeing, the high and the passion that water sports and contact with water and wind can bring!
Of course, the activity to be practised must be adapted with the right equipment. But the emotion they bring and the well-being they generate as an experience or as a daily practice are priceless. In fact, few activities combine physical, therapeutic and entertainment benefits as well as water sports.
This is why they are so highly recommended for people with physical or cognitive disabilities or neurological alterations resulting from a stroke or cerebral palsy. The objective and the final result is the same for all of them: to improve their quality of life and favour their social inclusion.
So, below, we will talk about the benefits of practising water sports for this type of people and what kind of activities they can do. We will also share with you information about our adapted classes.
OUR OFFER OF WATER SPORTS ACCESSIBLE TO PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES
Since we started our professional career creating this school, at Water Sports Mallorca we wanted to make our services accessible to everyone. We are convinced that everyone should have the option to enjoy the marine benefits that Muro beach has to offer. That is why we have trained ourselves to be able to give practical water sports classes to people with different disabilities.
We give individual classes or in groups or with their own friends or family. At our school we are happy to share our passion for the marine environment and water sports with anyone who wants to learn. In addition, our instructors have a lot of experience and specialised training in caring for people with special needs.
In fact, our professional engagement goes hand in hand with a serious commitment to social responsibility, where social inclusion appears as our top priority. Therefore, not only do we not want anyone to be excluded from learning to SUP, windsurf or sail a catamaran. We maintain the same price for our classes as for any non-disabled student. And, of course, we have adapted equipment for people with disabilities or those who need special equipment.
A basic rule of our school is to offer personalised learning, according to the needs or demands of each student. And, specifically, in the case of students with special needs, we offer them the possibility of sharing this learning and experience with their friends or family. Something that is not always common in other schools.
Certainly, we are particularly specialised in instructing people with visual impairments. We offer lessons in paddle surfing, windsurfing and catamaran sailing.
However, anyone can consult us about their specific case and we will study the possibilities we have to give them the lesson they want. We will do everything in our power to meet your desire to get involved in water sports.
THE BENEFITS OF WATER SPORTS ADAPTED FOR PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES
Why is it so important to make water sports accessible to people with disabilities? So many reasons!
Many of them are the same as for any person regardless of their condition: to have contact with the sea; to do sport; to have fun; to have new experiences; to get into a specific nautical discipline and to improve their practice. But also to feel better, to have more confidence in one’s own possibilities and resources and to feel part of a fantastic community.
The latter aspects are of utmost importance for people with disabilities. They relate to their social integration, the development of their social skills, their self-esteem and their inner security, reinforcing them enormously. This undoubtedly gives them a greater sense of well-being and thus strengthens their overall state of health. In other words, it increases their quality of life.
Also, in other aspects, adapted sports in the aquatic environment greatly promote physical mobility. Especially of the lower and upper limbs. It exercises various capacities – strength, flexibility, endurance, etc. – simultaneously. This results in improvements in muscle development, coordination, proprioception and blood circulation.
In this way, people with some kind of reduced mobility or sensory disability acquire more flexibility and body balance and a greater sense of security. This will benefit them in their daily life activities.
As you can see, water sports for disabled people provide many benefits for their mental, physical and social health. In other words, water sports provide exercise, therapy and fun in equal measure. Not to mention that they are a great way to promote social inclusion and social relations between people with and without disabilities.
AT WSM NO ONE IS LEFT OUT!
In short, there are many water sports that can be practised by people with disabilities. In addition to what we teach in our school – windsurfing, SUP or catamaran – there are others such as swimming, water skiing, adapted sailing, canoeing, adapted diving. Some of them do not even require adaptation of the materials. Others do need to be adapted, but today there are many orthopaedic materials that allow sports to be adapted to each type of disability.
In fact, this is confirmed by the numerous sportsmen and women with disabilities who participate in Paralympic championships and games in nautical disciplines!
The Water Sports Mallorca team is clear: just as the sea has no barriers, water sports should not have them either. In this sense, we do our best to open our school to our entire community and make our lessons accessible to the whole of society. This is why we have a specialised centre to respond to the sporting concerns of people with functional diversity or any other type of disability.
In addition, we have the benefit of being located in Alcudia Bay. Where the weather conditions are ideal for the practice of water sports for people with disabilities.
So everyone is welcome at our school and we will be happy to teach you how to enjoy the sea and water sports! We are sure you will want to repeat this experience again and again!
- Asociación Aidea (s/f). The importance of aquatic activity for people with stroke. Retrieved from https://bit.ly/3wqSMIH
- Sánchez Vinader, M. L. (2021). Adapted water sports. Retrieved from https://bit.ly/2SUE92t
- Sunrise Medical (2019). Water sports for people with disabilities. Retrieved from https://bit.ly/3qRXsGp