A recent Adaptive Sports Hand Cycling Clinic in Albuquerque was the result of the cooperative efforts of the New Mexico VA Health Care System (NMVAHCS) and local government and community partners. Staff of the NMVAHCS Adaptive Sports Program worked closely with members of the Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA) Racing Team to host the free clinic on May 9 at Albuquerque’s Bachechi Open Space Park.
“This special event was a success due to many Veterans involved with the planning and participation in this event,” said Michelle McKenzie, Spinal Cord Injury (SCI) Recreation Therapist at the Raymond G. Murphy VA Medical Center. “This event was a joint effort, with the support of the Veterans Canteen Service providing the continental breakfast and sack lunches for all participants. The City of Albuquerque Parks and Recreation Department granted the permit to utilize the parking area and the Bernalillo County Parks and Recreation Department allowing us to utilize the Bachechi Open Space Educational Building for the full day, waiving the fee for our Veterans.”
Approximately 40 Veterans and non-Veterans attended the first-of-a-kind event. The clinic began with cycling basics, and included discussion on medical concerns, road safety, equipment, and gear use. Other clinic segments covered cycling classifications, proper fitting, the VA’s role in providing sporting equipment, and hand cycle basic operation.
McKenzie said the clinic’s success also was the result of strong support and generosity of the Zia PVA, National PVA and the Del Norte Baptist Melodrama Group. Committee staff members from the NMVAHCS Spinal Cord Injury Center, Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Service assisted with the day-long program.
“This joint effort confirms that government agencies, private groups and small businesses can work together and be supportive of each other when providing services and programs for people of various abilities,” added McKenzie.
You can view more photos of the Adaptive Cycling Clinic here on our Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/VANewMexico#!/media/set/?set=a.690678437644695.1073741870.143577389021472&type=1