|World class adaptive snowboarder Nicole Roundy is training|
for the 2014 Winter Paralympic snowboarding team. Follow
her progress at www.nicoleroundy.com
Snowboarding has come a long way since its start in the 1970s. As the sport has progressed so has the equipment and the range of people it can serve. Adaptive snowboarding is now more available and is offered at many ski resorts.
Adaptive snowboarding can serve a wide range of different disabilities but not all - if the person does not have the ability to stand or walk adaptive downhill skiing would be the right alternative. Currently there is not a sit snowboard available for widespread use.
Ski resorts are able to accommodate people with different disabilities by using a wide range of snowboarding adaptations and teaching styles. New snowboarders should plan on using a tradition snowboard setup. Depending on the rider's disability they will be outfitted with different adaptive equipment. Often this includes ski poles or outriggers to help increase balance. Outriggers can also be used for someone with limited muscular control or strength.
|Snowboard lesson using Sno-wing.|
A rider bar is another adaptation that is available to someone with low balance or a lower extremity disability. This is a bar that is attached to the toe edge of the snowboard creating a place the rider can hold onto while snowboarding. As the snowboarder progresses through the learning period their instructor might also use a tether to help control the board.
|Using a rider bar.|
Ability Plus offers adaptive snowboarding at Mount Snow (West Dover, Vermont) and Attitash (Mount Washington Valley, NH)
New England Handicapped Sports Association runs adaptive snowboarding at Mount Sunapee, NH
Stride Adaptive Sports provides adaptive snowboarding lessons at Jiminy Peak Ski Area (Hancock, MA)
New England Disabled Sports offers adaptive snowboarding lesson a Loon Mountain (Lincoln, NH)