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    Any Wheelchair Racers left?

    Like many SCIs, I'm in need of a recreational activity. I'm in my mid-40s, slowing down some but feeling the need to have a sports related hobby. The shoulders are alright except for arthritis in my right one.

    While I'm still looking at handcycling, I'm actually thinking that I might get a racing chair and do 4 or so 10Ks a year (seriously train for the week or two leading into the race but other than that just do a comfortable ride several times a week).

    Are there any others here, doing something similar? If so, how long have you been doing it and how are your shoulders holding up?

    #2
    I'm a recreational racer, in my fourth year. I do about 2 5ks, 2 10ks, 2 sprint triathlons and maybe a half marathon each year. I train with a Paralympic Club program April - Aug once a week and otherwise go out once or twice a week on my own. I do weight training including shoulders twice a week, which I think is really important for shoulder maintenance. My shoulders are ok so far.

    Oh, and I generally don't do much pushing the week before a race, just a very light workout. I'm 53.

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      #3
      Originally posted by Katja View Post
      I'm a recreational racer, in my fourth year. I do about 2 5ks, 2 10ks, 2 sprint triathlons and maybe a half marathon each year. I train with a Paralympic Club program April - Aug once a week and otherwise go out once or twice a week on my own. I do weight training including shoulders twice a week, which I think is really important for shoulder maintenance. My shoulders are ok so far.

      Oh, and I generally don't do much pushing the week before a race, just a very light workout. I'm 53.
      Thanks for the response Katja!

      Yeah, the mix of races you described is close to what I'm considering. I'm thinking it will be nice to do an event out of town every 2-3 months, meet some nice folks and feel that sense of comradery with fellow racers. I ran cross-country in high school and several 10ks back in the 80s and always loved race days.

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        #4
        sorry, the sport i've picked up is fencing! great workout, only 1 bit of adaptive equipment needed (fencing frame to keep your chair locked and stable). i train with local fencing club and it's a blast! if only my health would cooperate
        "Smells like death in a bucket of chicken!"
        http://www.elportavoz.com/

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          #5
          Originally posted by Patton57 View Post
          Thanks for the response Katja!

          Yeah, the mix of races you described is close to what I'm considering. I'm thinking it will be nice to do an event out of town every 2-3 months, meet some nice folks and feel that sense of comradery with fellow racers. I ran cross-country in high school and several 10ks back in the 80s and always loved race days.
          It is nice to get together with others to do events. I have not yet gotten up enough courage to take the racing chair with me on a plane, but I've certainly loaded it up in the car to go to events a little further afield. My biggest problem in finding events is that even though I live in a recreational running paradise (Boulder), many, many road races here are on dirt/gravel paths, and I'm not risking a flat (not to mention how slow I would be).

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            #6
            If you have a dog or can have a dog, you might want to consider "wheelchair mushing".

            It is fun training your dog and is a team effort between you and your dog (you have to help up hills, for example). While there won't be (m)any other wheelchair mushers, you can compete and run with able bodied dryland mushers.

            I use a TiLite ZRc with 6 degrees of camber and a Freewheel. I can go into turns fast and grab one wheel to let the wheelchair pivot on the other and slide through the corner. My dog and I go out about every other day. Instead of getting a "walk", my dog goes on a run.

            A big advantage of this set up is it is easy to go. I just transfer into the ZRc and the dog and I get into my Van. We get out of the Van, I put her harness on, then put on the Freewheel, attach the tug line and off we go.

            If you are interested check out Facebook Wheelchair Mushing and Youtube Wheelchair Mushing.
            TM 2004 T12 incomplete

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              #7
              Originally posted by Patton57 View Post
              Are there any others here, doing something similar? If so, how long have you been doing it and how are your shoulders holding up?
              I've been racing wheelchairs for a little over 20 years. I only do a few races a year. I push low mileage most of the year usually 10k during my lunch break a few times per week. I also handcycle and kayak, so I put my shoulders through a lot. I don't have any major shoulder issues. I get tendonitis every now and then, but I just take it easy for a little while and it goes away.

              Like I said I push slow most of the time, but I will do a short build period if I have a race that I care about. Then I'll push hard a couple of days a week and bump my mileage up to about 100 miles/week.

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                #8
                Watch out for Carpal Tunnel, BOTH my hands went south requiring surgery on BOTH. I switched to handcycling.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by Patton57 View Post
                  Like many SCIs, I'm in need of a recreational activity. I'm in my mid-40s, slowing down some but feeling the need to have a sports related hobby. The shoulders are alright except for arthritis in my right one.

                  While I'm still looking at handcycling, I'm actually thinking that I might get a racing chair and do 4 or so 10Ks a year (seriously train for the week or two leading into the race but other than that just do a comfortable ride several times a week).

                  Are there any others here, doing something similar? If so, how long have you been doing it and how are your shoulders holding up?
                  Had a pretty good group at the Carlsbad 5000 last weekend in So. Cal.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by Kirker View Post
                    Watch out for Carpal Tunnel, BOTH my hands went south requiring surgery on BOTH. I switched to handcycling.

                    Were you using solids or manufactured gloves? Since I started making my own gloves my hands don't go numb anymore. However, they do go numb on the handcycle. For what it's worth, my shoulders hurt more on the handcycle too. I think race chairs get a bad rep from people that don't use them.

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                      #11
                      I used a race chair for about 13 years and about 100 races, until age 54. They were competitive races but I was recreational level but loved to compete in them.

                      Never had shoulder problems until 15 years later, which I attribute to wear and tear from transfers, etc.

                      The race chair is so much easier to transport than a handcycle, and great for exercise. Important to get correct fit. An indoor "roller" is nice to have.

                      If you do plan to race, suggest you always contact race director to indicate you would like a bit of a head start - if there are no other wheelers or handcyclers, just a few minutes is enough so you don't get tangled up at the start. Also, it helps to make absolutely sure you know the course turns - even drive the course if possible.
                      Have fun!

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                        #12
                        jheath, try a larger handpedal. Since I switched to the large size my hands don't go numb.

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                          #13
                          I've got a a borrowed to big for me race chair that I want to start using. Just got it last Spring and wheeled around a track a few miles for a few weeks but then had carpal tunnel and ulnar nerve surgery in the fall. Thinking of breaking it back out now, seems I'm as recovered as i'm going to get. Would love to do some 10k's and half marathons with it and build up to some short triathlons.
                          TexasWheelz in reincarnate, couldn't log in or get my PW reset...

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