Bicycling into the Future
By: Janelle LoBello
Name: Pelle Sederholm
Pelle Sederholm will be riding a standard two-wheeled track bicycle in the 2009 USA Cycling Paralympic Time Trial Championships in Bend, Oregon on July 31, 2009. A former professional skier, Sederholm, 55, was seriously injured in a skiing accident in May 2005. He suffered traumatic brain injury, broke his C6 and C7 vertebrae, and was in a coma for 26 days.
"Why shouldn’t I try," says Sederholm, who admits he skis and cycles better than he walks. "I hate excuses, I am a fighter and decide to make the most of what I can be."
Sederholm, a member of the Reeve Foundation’s Utah Chapter, is also greatly inspired by Christopher Reeve himself. "The first time Christopher Reeve really had an impact on me was when I saw him talking with Barbara Walters," explains Sederholm. "He didn’t talk so much about his injury, but what he tried to do and accomplish, that’s what blew me away."
Coming from a family of cyclists, Sederholm had a dream of cycling after watching the Tour de France from his hospital room for a month back in 2005. "I received a grant from the Challenged Athletes Foundation to purchase a bike for $1,600," says Sederholm. "My goal was to ride one mile for every dollar I received. I beat my goal and rode 1,698 by December 2008!" He also aspires to be the first quadriplegic to ride the l’Alpe d’Huez in the Tour de France.
Making new memories
"I want to raise awareness of the psychological and physical challenges people like myself have," says Sederholm, hoping to become a role model to show what people at his level can do. "If you ask me how I feel, I feel like the happiest man alive. I get to live again."
When Sederholm lines for the 20K race on July 31, 2009, it will be exactly four years to the day he was released from the hospital.
The Adaptive Sports Center (ASC)A non-profit organization located in Colorado that provides year-round recreation activities for people with disabilities and their families.
American Association of AdaptedSportWorks to enhance the health, independence and self-sufficiency of youths with physical disabilities by facilitating adapted sports programs in local communities, in cooperation with schools, parks and recreation, YMCA/YWCAs, hospitals, parents and other groups.
Blaze Sports501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that advances the lives of youth and adults with physical disability through sport and healthy lifestyles. BlazeSports provides sports training, competitions, summer camps and other sports and recreational opportunities for youth and adults with spinal cord injury, spina bifida, cerebral palsy, traumatic brain injury, muscular dystrophy, amputation, visual impairment or blindness as well as other physical disabilities.
Disabled Sports USAOffers nationwide sports rehabilitation programs to anyone with a permanent physical disability. Activities include winter skiing, water sports, summer and winter competitions, fitness and special sports events. DSUSA, as a member of the U.S. Olympic Committee, is the governing body for winter sports for all athletes with disabilities, and for summer sports for amputee athletes. Nationwide chapter network of sports and rec programs.
The Handicapped Scuba AssociationPromotes the physical and social well being of people with disabilities through the exhilarating sport of scuba diving.
Hand CyclingWhether for fitness, serious competition, or pure recreation, here's a sport that can be enjoyed by many and provide quite the "ride" at the same time.
International Paralympic CommitteeThe International Paralympic Committee (IPC) is the global governing body of the Paralympic Movement. The IPC organizes the Summer and Winter Paralympic Games, and serves as the International Federation for nine sports, for which it supervises and co-ordinates the World Championships and other competitions.
Life Rolls OnLRO is the story of able-bodied individuals, working in concert with those with spinal cord injury, to motivate each other with the inspirational message of achievement in the face of extreme adversity. Life Rolls On utilizes action sports through our flagship program, They Will Surf Again, which pushes the boundary of possibility for those with spinal cord injury (SCI).
National Wheelchair Basketball AssociationBasketball is perhaps the oldest organized sport for athletes in wheelchairs. The game is fast and fun, and played in dozens of cities across the U.S.
The National Center on AccessibilityNSCD provides recreation for children and adults with disabilities. In addition to recreational downhill and cross-country skiing, snowboarding and snowshoeing, NSCD provides year-round competition training to ski racers with disabilities. Summer recreation opportunities include biking, hiking, in-line skating, sailing, therapeutic horseback riding, white water rafting, baseball, fishing, rock climbing for the blind, and camping.
Quad RugbyFormerly known as murderball, Quad Rugby is a game for quads who can push a chair. Fast, rough and very competitive.
The United States Tennis AssociationTennis has been adapted for the wheelchair player: the ball can bounce two times. This allows chair-players to give standup players a run for the their money. The sport is growing fast and is very competitive at the elite level. Click on "community tennis."
U.S. ParalympicsA division of the U.S. Olympic Committee, it is dedicated to becoming the world leader in the Paralympic sports movement and promoting excellence in the lives of people with physical disabilities through education, sports programs and partnerships with community organizations, medical facilities and government agencies.
World T.E.A.M. SportsUnites people with and without disabilities through unique athletic events taking place all over the world.
Quality of Life Grants DatabaseFind resources within the PRC Quality of Life Grants Database. Search by Zip Code, State or an Entire Category.
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