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tauras 03-26-2005 04:33 AM

Are you a handicapped sailor or do you know of a handicapped sailor that lives aboard? I would like to hear about how you (they) deal with the day to day activities aboard. I know of one blind sailor and one in a wheel chair that sail full time and I would like to hear from you. Those sailors that have real hanicaps and go sail anyway please write and tell all of us how you manage.

markcash 03-26-2005 07:12 AM

I don''t live aboard but I am hearing impaired. I don''t think I have to do much to accomodate my problem. For sailing classes, I sought out instructors or schools who are familiar with the problem. The people at Ocean Sailing Academy in Charleston have really helped me out a lot, even though they have no instructors who know sign language. Luckily, the newest digital hearing aids work miracles. The small class size really helped as it afforded a lot more personal instruction. As for radio''s, we just make sure they are turned way up and that my hearing aid batteries are fresh.

It has been so rewarding that I think I''d like to continue with the US Sailing curriculum and try and become a certified instructor concentrating mainly on deaf and hard-of-hearing students. I should give OSA a call about that. Another good excuse to get out on the water and this time, it will all be tax deductable (with my job, it would be).

tauras 03-26-2005 10:41 AM

Markcash: Thanks for your input. My wife has
deteriorating nerves in her back and will be unable to walk with in the next two yrs. But she wants to continue to sail and I want to collect accounts of how other handicapped
sailers handle the problems encountered in sailing.
Thanks for your input

eryka32 03-30-2005 04:31 AM

Tauras, sympathies for your situation, but congrats on the attitude! We''re both able liveaboards so have no personal experience to offer. In our area there''s an organization "Chesapeake Region Accessible Boating" that works to help those with physical challenges enjoy sailing, perhaps they''d have suggestions? Actually, I googled "accessible boating" and found a host of organizations that might be a good resource, perhaps one in your area?

Orion48 03-31-2005 08:32 AM

At our marina we have a man who uses a wheelchair that goes right to the egde of his boat and he has installed grab bars to get in and out-His chair sits on the dock until he returns- Also there is a great book that I just read and lent out (so I cant remember the title my bad!)About a man and women who were both paraplegic and they built and sailed a boat from Rhodesia(trucked it to S AFrica)to Florida where they now live- I found it at borders- They give many suggestions and support.They sailed by themselves- no help- It''s a great book about sailing-
Also there is a boat that competes in the transpac race that is composed of sailors who have disabilities-Good Luck and keep sailing!

kokopelli9 03-31-2005 08:46 AM

In the newest issue of Cruising World magazine there is an article about a sailor who is deaf and then another article about a sailor who is a paraplegic...just thought I''d let you know in case you haven''t seen these.

tauras 04-03-2005 01:48 PM

thanks everyone for the info. It helped alot
for my wife to understand that there is quality of life to be had by all handycapped people.

Ronbye 12-21-2005 04:20 AM

Both of my parents are hearing impaired and I am not and I grew up in a hearing impaired world. Normal for me. As for my first lanquage, it is sign. My mom is now 83 years old and she loves to sail with me, whenever she can. Unfortunately Dad died 30 years ago, but if he were alive now I wouldn''t be able to get him off the boat. With the new vhf radios on the market now and cell phones with lcd displays it is only a matter of time when radio communication will be totally visible /audible. I don''t generally refer to disabilities as impairment but rather opportunities to do things different to get the same result. So keep at it, there is no reason why anybody who wants to experience sailing should let their circumstance prevent them. Good Luck.

Sailormon6 12-21-2005 05:17 AM

One of the better racing sailors I''ve known was a young man who was born with a shriveled arm. He demonstrated that sailing, and especially racing, is far more of a cerebral sport than a physical one.

Rig the boat to accommodate her needs, and keep her physically or mentally involved in the sailing of the boat to the extent of her abilities. Even if her physical participation is limited, she can be the tactician when you race, or the navigator and radio operator when you cruise, and she can always help you look for windshifts, puffs and lulls.

bubb2 12-21-2005 08:47 AM

hello tauras

Thank you so much for your post. I do not have personal experience but a friend of mine does. He is a coast guard captain and runs a dayliner in Albany Ny. in the summmers. He is in a wheel chair and an active recreatioal boater. I would be happy to give you his name and number. I know he would happy and able to anwser those questions that you have. Please contact me off line and i will give you his name and number. regards mike

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