Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Team River Runner

Living in the Washington, DC area affords residents a variety of unique recreation activities. Hiking and biking trails abound through a network of National and State parks. Kayaking and paddling opportunities are plentiful along the Potomac river.

Of course, OPC is biased towards paddling sports. Elliot Weintrob, OPC President and CPO, was a member of the 1992 US Olympic canoe team. Paddling sports are a fantastic activity to develop physical fitness as it can be easily tailored to the individual's current endurance and strength abilities. A proponent of paddling sports, Elliot professes, "10 miles outside of DC, when you're on the water, you might as well be 10,000 miles away. It's a great reality check."

Founded in 1994, Team River Runner is a non-profit organization that provides kayaking opportunities for injured active duty and retired military. Taught through the generosity of volunteers, the participant does not have to hold previous kayaking or paddling experience. All that is required is an adventurous spirit and a willingness to try.

Kayaking experiences are provided at no charge to the participant. The organization is funded through a combination of charitable donations and the sale of select merchandise. Paddling lessons are provided in a pool before the participant is transitioned to a natural setting. Supervision is provided throughout the experience.

Team River Runner conducts classes and kayaking trips across our region, including along the Potomac and Virginia Beach. If you are interested in participating or want to learn more about Team River Runner, click here.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Amputee Awareness Day!

Although the ACA has designated April to be "Limb Loss Awareness Month," we would be remiss if we failed to acknowledge that Amputee Awareness week runs from October 4-11. This week designation is recognized internationally and was created provide a global platform for limb loss issues, ranging from landmine placement and access to prosthetic devices.

This week holds historical significance for the amputee community. It was during this week in 1846 that the first patent was awarded for a prosthetic device. The patent marks what is accepted to be the beginning of the modern age of prosthetics. The actual patent was awarded on October 7 which has become recognized as Amputee Awareness Day worldwide.

We hope that you will consider honoring this day by educating peers or co-workers about living with limb loss. If your dress code permits (and only if you feel comfortable), consider wearing shorts to "Strut your Stuff." Let's bring amputee issues out of the shadows and utilize this global platform. Change occurs only after a dialog is established.

However you choose to celebrate, we are honored to be part of your journey. Happy Amputee Awareness Day!