Monday, August 8, 2011

Creating Ability Offers High Quality Kayak Adaptations

Creating Ability kayak set up with pontoons and low back
seat in use at D.A.R. State Forest in Goshen.
It is challenging to post with peak time in summer recreation activities taking place now, but here is a quick look at kayaking. In particular, we are putting some new kayaks from Creating Ability into good use at our kayak programs in Concord, Worcester and the Berkshires.

I was thrilled to discover Creating Ability last summer and purchase some kayaks with pontoons and adaptive seating this year. The design is the best I've seen for pontoons on kayaks, which provide greater stability for more vulnerable paddlers. I especially like the independence these boats offer to paddlers who might otherwise have to be in a tandem for the stability reasons or struggle to paddle independently with compromised stability and comfort. The boats come with color coordinated pontoons in a complete package - very nice!

Paddler struggling with balance and proper seating could
benefit from pontoons and more formal adaptive seating.
The adaptive seat offers good trunk support for those who need it. The high back can be easily removed. Both low back and high back sides adjust in and out to accommodate narrower and wider bodies. The seats can be angled or straight depending on preference and comfort. The addition of a Jackson "sweet cheeks" cushion, which easily fits to your specific anatomy, adds a final level of comfort. I'm surprised people are willing to get out of these kayaks when their sessions are over!

Other recreation organizations in Massachusetts that have been acquiring kayaks from Creating Ability this year include All Out Adventures, Holyoke Rows, and Waypoint Adventure. These boats are making their way into a variety of kayak fleets! Thanks again to Ralphe Marche of New England Handicapped Sports Association for showing me this great equipment last summer!

If you are looking for better grip adaptation for kayak paddles, you may not need to look further than Creating Ability. For years we've been making do with home-made adaptations that help hold hands to paddles while still allowing them to slip out easily. Charlie Croteau makes a great hand adaptation for people who are quadriplegic but doesn't mass market it. Creating Ability provides three good solutions for common hand adaptions needed in paddling - a simple grip support to keep fingers on paddle, a more involved wrist and grip support for people who are quadriplegic, and a way for one armed or hemiplegic paddlers to succeed. This last adaptation is currently going through a design change so we are still waiting to try it out. Check it all out on their website:

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Top post. I look forward to reading more. Cheers