It’s National Physical Fitness and Sports Month, led by the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports, and Nutrition! The observances this month focus on the importance of an active and healthy lifestyle for everyone, including people with disabilities. This can range from adaptive sports to accessible gyms to health promotion campaigns targeted to underserved communities. Did you know the NIDILRR community has many excellent tools and resources to support active, healthy lives for people with disabilities?
- Thinking of joining a local gym? Use AIM-FREE from the Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center on Interactive Exercise Technologies and Exercise Physiology for People with Disabilities (RecTech) to evaluate the accessibility of the facilities and equipment.
- Considering starting or joining a weight management group? Download the participant and leader manuals and watch these videos from the Nutrition and Exercise for Wellness and Recovery (NEW-R) Program at the Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Psychiatric Disability and Co-Occurring Medical Conditions.
- Developing an exercise routine? Check out these videos demonstrating safe exercise techniques for wheelchair users from the RRTC on Secondary Conditions in the Rehabilitation of Individuals with Spinal Cord Injury.
- Starting or continuing an active lifestyle with arthritis? Listen to the podcast episodes on yoga, tai chi, walking, nutrition, and making time for exercise from the RRTC on Enhancing Activity and Participation Among Persons with Arthritis.
- Getting the family in on it? See how important leisure and recreation are for families facing psychiatric disability and how to plan for it with the Family Leisure Toolkit (PDF) from the RRTC on Community Inclusion of Individuals with Psychiatric Disabilities (TU Collaborative).
- Do you work with traditionally underserved communities?
- Visit Quality Mall’s section on health and wellness resources that teach and encourage persons with developmental disabilities, and those who care about them, to develop and maintain healthy lifestyles, including information on diet, exercise, and aging. Quality Mall is maintained by the RRTC on Community Living for Individuals with Developmental Disabilities.
- Order the Life Skills Manual, particularly the sections on Food and Nutrition and Home and Self Care, developed for programs assisting people with disabilities who are transitioning from homelessness to stable housing. These manuals were developed under several NIDILRR field initiated projects.
These offer just a small sample of the wealth of research on fitness, exercise, health and wellness promotion, and nutrition conducted by NIDILRR-funded projects over the years. Dive deeper into our collection through this advanced search in REHABDATA to find journal articles, books, and reports from these projects and other NIDILRR projects, as well as other sources, most of which can be ordered through our document delivery service.
The warmer weather means more people are out and about, but remember that maintaining a healthy lifestyle should be a year-round activity. Check out the Inclusive Fitness Coalition for other ways you can support health and wellness for every level of ability! We hope these resources help you and your family Get Physical!
*Apologies to Olivia Newton-John for using her iconic song title, but it works so well!