Activity 4 All Programs
The program was first created in 1999 by Dr. Kevin Taylor and a kinesiology graduate student and has been running and growing since then. This tandem cycling program allows visually impaired community members to experience the joy and exercise benefits of riding a bicycle. Students are trained to steer and maneuver tandem bicycles and are then paired with a blind or low-vision participant to ride around local San Luis Obispo trails.
The Adapted Paddle Program
The APP provides the training and equipment necessary for disabled community members to successfully kayak in open waters. In 2001, the Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation awarded Dr. Taylor with a grant enabling him to purchase the necessary supplies to get this program up and running. Over the years, the APP has accumulated enough kayaks to allow for 12 students, two instructors and six participants to be involved with the program each quarter.
Participants with various disabilities (including quadriplegia, paraplegia, amputation, muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy and spina bifida) practice basic paddling skills in a swimming pool before taking the exercise up a notch in the Morro Bay Estuary or the Santa Margarita Lake. While the program is primarily student run and overseen by faculty members, community members such a physical therapist Tom Reilly and occupational therapist John Lee have volunteered their time and expertise to make the program a success.
The Friday Club
Put on in conjunction with the San Luis Obispo Special Olympics, this Kinesiology 407 lab allows students to work with athletes of all ages and abilities, including children, adults and wheelchair athletes.
Each week for three hours, Cal Poly students interact with Special Olympic athletes and teach them about a different sport or form of exercise at each meeting. This program gives participating disabled community members opportunities to exercise and enjoy physical activity while the kinesiology students gain valuable experience working with people who have special needs.
In addition to weekly meetings, the Friday Club also participates in an annual Special Olympics area meet at Cuesta College each spring by providing health education and sponsoring fun activities for all attendees.