There are a lot of adaptive skiing programs to help people with brain or spinal cord injuries enjoy the slopes, and not just in Colorado. Craig’s therapeutic recreation department collaborates with programs in Colorado, but they also keep track of programs across the country for Craig grads who don’t necessarily live in the Rockies.
Here’s a list of ten adaptive programs to consider if you’re thinking of going skiing this winter:
- California: Achieve Tahoe
This adaptive program in California is a great option for both ski and snowboard lessons for all levels of ability. Achieve Tahoe says that it “seeks to utilize each individual's abilities to help them find the greatest amount of independence in recreation.” Their lesson types include two-track, three-track, four-track, slider, snowboarding, tetra-ski, mono-ski, blind/low vision, and bi-ski. Learn more on their website.
- Oregon: Oregon Adaptive Sports (OAS)
Oregon Adaptive Sports is based at Mt. Bachelor Resort and Hoodoo Ski Area and offers adaptive alpine skiing lessons. Their certified adaptive instructors are trained in mono-ski, bi-ski, two-track, three-track, four-track, alpine, nordic, snowboarding, and guiding skiers with visual impairments. Learn more on their website.
- Utah: National Ability Center (NAC)
The National Ability Center is based at several locations in Utah, including Park City Mountain, Deer Valley Resort, Brighton and Solitude. Their instructors are trained in adaptive techniques for three-track, four-track, mono-ski, bi-ski, snow slider, ski bike and snowboarding, as well as guiding skiers and riders with low vision or blindness. The NAC says that their goal is to “get you skiing or riding independently with friends and family.” Learn more on their website.
- Wyoming: Teton Adaptive Sports (TAS)
If you’re looking to ski in the Tetons, Teton Adaptive Sports provides specialized ski equipment and adaptive instructors for Jackson Hole Mountain Resorts. They have seasonal adaptive packages and also have a TAS Scholarship to help pay for half the lessons and equipment. Learn more on their website.
- Colorado: Adaptive Sports Center (ASC)
Here in our home state, Adaptive Sports Center's instructors specialize in helping individuals with disabilities to challenge themselves on the slopes of Crested Butte. They offer lessons for mono-ski, bi-ski, alpine ski, snowboarding, three-track, four-track, and nordic skiing. Learn more on their website.
- Colorado National Sports Center for the Disabled (NSCD)
Also in Colorado, the National Sports Center for the Disabled provides private lessons at Winter Park. Lessons are available for two-track, three-track, four-track, slider ski, ski bike, mono-ski, dual-ski, bi-ski and snowboard, and they also offer family lessons so that family members can learn proper techniques for assisting with special needs while on the slopes. Learn more on their website.
- Montana: DREAM Adaptive Recreation
DREAM works with all abilities and across many different outdoor sports. For skiing and snowboarding, they collaborate with Whitefish Mountain Resort in Montana. They strive to keep their programs affordable and also have need-based scholarships. Learn more on their website.
- Vermont: Vermont Adaptive Ski & Sports
Vermont Adaptive empowers people of all abilities through inclusive sports and recreation, plus programming around environmental, holistic wellness, and competitive training philosophies. Their skiing and snowboarding programs are at Pico Mountain/Killington Resort, Sugarbush Resort, and Bolton Valley Ski Area. Learn more on their website.
- Maine: Maine Adaptive Sports & Recreation
Maine Adaptive offers year-round education and training for individuals with disabilities, including specialty camps and programs that allow people to learn from one another as well as from their instructors. All lessons, both winter and summer, are free of charge. Learn more on their website.
- New York: Adaptive Sports Foundation (ASF)
The Adaptive Sports Foundation specializes in outdoor activities, support, and community for children and adults with physical and cognitive disabilities and chronic illnesses. The ASF provides year-round recreational activities; their winter program offers downhill skiing, sit-skiing, snowboarding, nordic skiing and snowshoeing. Learn more on their website.
If you’re interested in going on a ski trip but don’t know where to start, the Craig Hospital Adventure Programs offered by Therapeutic Recreation are a great place to start. They offer unique opportunities for travel, sports and outdoor recreation. The trips range from single-day trips to 10 or more days and offer an opportunity to travel with support and guidance from our trained therapeutic recreation staff. If you love winter sports, our variety of ski programs can help you get back to sliding on snow!