Every year, from March through October, Ability360 Sports & Fitness Center and Max in Motion®, a Valley-based nonprofit that provides youth sports opportunities for children in low-income communities and those with physical or intellectual disabilities, host youth adaptive sports clinics.
This year’s clinics to introduce children 18 years and younger with physical and intellectual disabilities to wheelchair basketball, hockey, power soccer, wheelchair tennis, baseball and wheelchair rugby, run from March 14 through Oct. 24 at Ability360 Sports & Fitness Center, 5031 E. Washington St.
The clinics, which feature two different sports, are taught by current adaptive sports competitors, are scheduled one Saturday a month. Young athletes learn skills in the individual sports and try out specialty wheelchairs and equipment used in competition. Lunch is served at every clinic.
There is no charge, but registration is required at www.ability360.org.
“Seeing these young people experience sports they never thought they would ever be able to play is incredibly exciting and remarkably compelling,” said Ability360 Sports & Fitness Center Vice President and General Manager Gus LaZear. “The impact is not only on the kids, but on their parents and family. It’s a wonderful program.”
The program is named in memory of Max Shacknai, a talented young athlete who tragically lost his life in July 2011.
The schedule for the upcoming Max in Motion season is:
• March 14: Power soccer and wheelchair softball
• April 18: Power soccer and wheelchair basketball
• May 16: Power soccer and wheelchair tennis
• June 20: Power soccer and wheelchair golf
• July 11: Power soccer and wheelchair softball
• Aug. 15: Power soccer and wheelchair basketball
• Sept. 19: Power soccer and wheelchair tennis
• Oct. 24: Power soccer and wheelchair golf
During its first seven years, Max in Motion® has:
• Awarded 9,000 scholarships to young athletes, enabling them to participate in competitive sports.
• Established, with Ability360, the first wheelchair sports clinic program, which will lead to the formation of Max in Motion® competitive leagues for disabled youth, and
• Expanded, in partnerships with Southern California Youth Soccer Organization, to the most underserved Latino communities throughout Southern California to create much-needed athletic and leadership opportunities for Latino youth.
For more information about Ability360, visit www.ability360.org/sports. For more
information about Max in Motion®, visit www.maxinmotion.org