Empowerment Through Adventure: The Oregon Adaptive Sports Story

by Chad Hultz

Nestled in the natural grandeur of Oregon, Oregon Adaptive Sports (OAS) thrives with a singular vision: to make the outdoors accessible to all, regardless of physical limitations. Since its inception in 1996, this organization has been a cornerstone in bridging the gap in outdoor recreational opportunities for individuals with disabilities in Oregon. From a community-driven initiative, OAS has grown into a leading adaptive sports foundation in the Pacific Northwest, offering year-round programs and positively impacting over 400 unique individuals annually.

Mission and Vision

With a core belief in the transformative power of the outdoors, OAS has dedicated itself to creating access to high-quality outdoor recreation experiences for individuals with disabilities, guided by principles of universal design. Their mission is to empower participants through adaptive sports activities that build confidence, self-esteem, and foster independence. The vision is clear and ambitious: a day when every person with a disability can reap the benefits of outdoor recreation and disability rights are fully embraced.

Programs and Services

OAS's range of programs is as diverse as the landscape of Oregon itself, offering adaptive skiing near me and wheelchair skiing during the glistening winters, while summers provide opportunities for adaptive kayaking and disability skiing. Participants can also enjoy mountain biking, cycling, rock climbing, and paddling. Each program is carefully crafted to cater to the varied abilities of participants, ensuring a safe, enjoyable, and enriching experience.

Community Impact and Participant Experiences

The impact of OAS on the disability community and its participants is profound. Individuals who may have once viewed the outdoors with apprehension now approach it with anticipation and joy, thanks to wheelchair accessible programs. Engaging in adaptive sports consistently leads to an enhanced quality of life. Through the shared experiences of outdoor adventures, OAS fosters a vibrant community where stories of triumph and personal growth are as abundant as the natural beauty that surrounds them.

Events and Volunteering

OAS also hosts events like 'Ski for All' and 'First Chair,' which not only raise awareness and funds for adaptive sports but also bring together people from all walks of life to celebrate inclusivity in Oregon sports. The spirit of volunteerism is robust within OAS, with dedicated individuals contributing their time and energy to support the mission. These volunteers are the backbone of the organization, ensuring that each event and program is a success through their volunteer opportunities.

As Oregon Adaptive Sports continues to break environmental barriers and champion the spirit of adventure, it stands as a testament to the power of adaptive recreation and community unity. The organization's unwavering commitment to accessibility in outdoor recreation resonates with a simple, yet powerful message: the outdoors is for everyone. Through the tireless efforts of OAS, the beauty of Oregon's wilderness becomes a stage where every individual has the opportunity to star in their own extraordinary adventure.

Contact Information

For more information about Oregon Adaptive Sports and how to get involved, please contact:

- Phone: 541.306.4774

- Address: 63025 OB Riley Road Ste #12 Bend, OR 97703

- Website: https://oregonadaptivesports.org/

All photos were taken by Oregon Adaptive Sports