Accessible Sports in Thunder Bay

Below is a list of Accessible sports and sport organisations/clubs welcoming accessible athletes. Please note that Special Olympics also has a huge array of additional sports.

Baseball - Challenger Baseball

Challenger Baseball is an adaptive baseball league for anyone with a physical disability, an intellectual disability, a cognitive delay, or a developmental disability.

Challenger Baseball creates a support network and community of peers and adults to support, encourage, and challenge athletes to step out of their comfort zone

Contact: Tyler - tamcdoug@lakeheadu.ca 

Cheerleading - Dynamite Cheer Dreamers

The Dynamite Cheer Dreamers is the first and only special needs cheerleading team in Thunder Bay! This team is for girls and boys of all ages. The Dreamers can be seen performing in all local competitions!

Contact: Lorena - dynamitecheer2010@gmail.com 

Website: https://dynamitecheer.weebly.com/dreamers.html

Curling - Wheelchair Curling

Wheelchair curling is an adaptation of curling for athletes with a disability affecting their lower limbs or gait.

  • Wheelchair curling is played with the same rocks and on the same ice as standard curling, though the rocks are thrown from a stationary wheelchair and there is no sweeping.
  • Rocks may be thrown by hand while leaning over the side of the wheelchair, or pushed by a delivery stick.
  • The delivery stick is a pole with a bracket that fits over the rock handle, allowing the rock to be pushed while applying correct rotation.

Contact: Gino Sonego - aurora.gino@tbaytel.net 

Venue: Fort William Curling Club

Goalball

Goal Ball is a team sport designed specifically for athletes with a vision impairment.

  • Goal Ball is Paralympic sport and is easily learned and played by people of all ages and abilities. 
  • To play, both teams are blindfolded at either end of a court, and roll a ball with a belll in it back and forth across the court. 
  • If you get it past the other team’s end line, you get a point!
Hockey - Sledge Hockey

Sledge Hockey, also known as Para ice hockey, is an adaptation of ice hockey designed for players who have a lower-body impairment.

Sledge hockey is played under similar rules to standard ice hockey, players are seated on sleds and use special hockey sticks with metal "teeth" on the tips of their handles to navigate the ice. Playing venues use an ice hockey rink.

Sledge Public Skate sessions happen at the Fort William Gardens from 7:00pm - 8:30pm

Wednesday January 10

Wednesday January 24

Wednesday February 7

Wednesday March 20

 

All participants are required to wear a CSA approved hockey helmet.

It is suggested that you dress warmly and bring mitts/gloves.

 

The Ontario Sledge Hockey Association has more information.

Horseback Riding - Therapeutic Riding Association

The Therapeutic Riding Association provides physical therapy on horseback to people with special needs in the Thunder Bay area.

Contact: Tereza - terezabiloski@tbaytel.net or thatbarn@aol.com    

Skiing - Cross Country and Para Nordic/Sitski

Cross Country

Contact: Liz Inkila - admin@xcskiontario.ca 

Website: xcskiontario.ca  

 

Para Nordic/Sitski

Para Nordic is an umbrella term that covers multiple impairments. Athletes with impaired muscle power, limb deficiency, leg length difference, hypertonia, ataxia, impaired passive range of movement, vision impairment and athetosis can all participate in Para Nordic. Many athletes with a disability affecting their lower limbs or gait choose to participate in Para Nordic using a sit ski. Sit-skiing is an accessibility option offered by the Kamview Nordic Trails, call ahead to borrow one - 807-475-7081.

  • Sit-skis are made of an ultra-light weight plastic or carbon fibre bucket supported by an aluminium alloy frame.
  • This frame clips into a pair of cross country skis.
  • Ski poles are shortened to accommodate the seat height and the skier double poles for a cross country ski experience.

Contact: Dave at Kamview - 807-475-7081

Special Olympics

The Special Olympics Canada Games began in 1974 and are national multi-sport Games for athletes with an intellectual disability. 

At this time there are 18 Special Olympic Sports:

Winter

  • Alpine Skiing
  • Curling
  • Figure Skating
  • Floor Hockey
  • Nordic Skiing
  • Snowshoeing
  • Speed Skating

Spring

  • 5-Pin Bowling
  • 10-Pin Bowling
  • Basketball
  • Powerlifting
  • Rhythmic Gymnastics
  • Swimming

Summer

  • Athletics
  • Bocce
  • Golf
  • Soccer
  • Softball

The Special Olympics Canada Games serve more than 41,000 children, participating in programs run with the support of local sport clubs across 12 provincial and territorial Chapters.

Contact: Rob Neff - carolandrobneff@hotmail.com or Denita Minoletti - dminoletti1@shaw.ca

Check out their Facebook page for more information.

Swimming

Thunderbolts Swim Club

Contact: Michelle Luu - boltspres@gmail.com 

Tennis

Tennis Centre

Contact: Jamie Grieve - jgrieve@tbaytel.net 

Volleyball - Sitting Volleyball

Sitting Volleyball is volleyball with a lower net played from a seated position. Equipment is housed at Lakehead University and groups can rent it and the space.

Contact: Taryn Klarner - tklarner@lakeheadu.ca or 343-8010 ext 7190

Helpful Organisations 

George Jeffrey Children's Centre

Stacey Collie
scollie@georgejeffrey.com

808-623-4381 ext. 6805
March of Dimes

Todd Kennedy

807.345.6595 ext 105 

Email: tkennedy@marchofdimes.ca 

Motion

Justin Beuparlant

Justin.beauparlant@motioncares.ca 

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