WINDHAM, N.Y. – The Adaptive Sports Foundation (ASF) kicks off its summer programming next week as it hosts its first Warriors in Motion® (WIM) event of the season, road cycling, from Tuesday, May 9-Thursday, May 11.
The Warriors in Motion program provides participating injured United States servicemen and women with a basic knowledge and practice of wellness and the importance of lifelong healthy living. All WIM programs are goal-oriented and empower the warrior to take charge of their own fitness and wellness.
The ASF will welcome eight military veterans into its lodge, including U.S. Army veteran Aaron Brooks. Brooks will be traveling from Virginia and although he skied with ASF at the annual Bob Stubbs Warriors in Motion Winter Sports Weekend in the past, this will be his first summer visit to the Northern Catskill Mountains.
“I’ve done some cycling, but it mostly has been on flat ground so I imagine being up there in the mountains will provide more hills and slopes,” Brooks explained. “It will be a challenge, but one that I’m looking forward to overcoming.”
The eight warriors will arrive at the Gwen Allard Adaptive Sports Center on Tuesday afternoon to meet with ASF staff and volunteers, to get their equipment fitted and for a lunch. After everyone is fed and their bikes and equipment are set up, the group will depart for their first ride of the week, a nine-mile trek west from Windham to the Prattsville Town Park. The ASF shuttle bus will pick up the participants and bring them back to Windham. From there everyone can check into their hotels and relax for a little while before meeting again for a catered dinner at the ASF Lodge.
Wednesday will feature a 15-mile bike ride from Prattsville to Westkill. The warriors will be picked up from their hotels at 9 a.m. and will be dropped off at the Prattsville Town Park, where they will hop on their bikes, kick up their kickstands and head southeast. The participants will ride along Route 23A along the Schoharie Creek for six miles until they reach Lexington, N.Y. The group will take a break for lunch at the Lexington Fire Hall for about an hour before finishing the journey to Westkill along Route 42, an additional nine-mile ride. Once again, the ASF shuttle bus will be at the final destination waiting to pick up the warriors and take them back to their hotels to prepare for another dinner at the ASF.
Thursday’s venture will take place around the Windham area, and will begin after all the warriors arrive at the ASF Lodge at 9 a.m. After the ride, the warriors and volunteers will arrive back at the Gwen Allard Adaptive Sports Center for one last lunch together before the participants depart at around 1 p.m.
“For those of us who really like sports or being active who have been injured, we’re not able to do certain things the way we used to,” Brooks said. “These adaptive sports programs help us learn more about adaptive sports and other ways of being active, it gives us the same feelings we had from doing the sports in the past.”
Brooks recalls the atmosphere from his ski trips with the ASF and is looking forward to another trip to Windham. “The ASF provides a beautiful environment,” he said. “The scenery, the veteran camaraderie, the whole environment allows us to have a good time and get some exercise.”
Next week’s road cycling event is the first of eight Warriors in Motion programs the ASF has scheduled for the summer of 2023. Other WIM programs include mountain biking, backpacking, hiking, kayaking and golf.
The ASF’s Warriors in Motion program is funded by donations that were generously given to the organization. Thanks to these donations, the ASF is able to provide bicycle rentals (to those who need them), helmets, water bottles, all meals, hotel rooms, snacks, water, sports drinks, sunscreen, bug spray, ponchos (if necessary) and maps, both digital and paper copies. If you’d like to donate to the Adaptive Sports Foundation’s Warriors in Motion program, or any of the other programs the ASF has to offer, click here.