As coaches, we often find our creativity and skill set challenged by the limitations and strengths of our athletes. These scenarios force us to grow and expand our tool box to accommodate the needs of a given situation. Usually, this comes in the form of some common outliers - unusually strong/weak athletes, athletes undergoing rehabilitation, youth athletes, older athletes, etc.
However, when confronted with adaptive athletes, oftentimes coaches find themselves at a loss. There is very little information and resources for catering training to these special populations but when I came across adaptive athlete, coach, and author Travis Pollen, I knew I had struck gold.
In my interview with Travis, I ask the obvious and not so obvious questions about training individuals with paralysis, amputations, and other physical barriers. The answers were above and beyond what I expected. In Part 1, Travis helps empower coaches through knowledge and understanding of adaptive athletes, while in Part 2 we will dive into the physical training approach. The process starts by recognizing that we are all, in our own way, adaptive athletes.
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