August 06, 2012

We have a strong set of values that guide the behavior of all those who work, play and compete at Sportable, one of which is Ingenuity: finding creative solutions to problems that aren’t always visible or deemed possible.

Nothing says “Ingenuity” like a pair of running legs… does it?? South Africa’s Oscar Pistorius is the first amputee to run at the Olympic Games. After being recognized as one of the 16 fastest men in the WORLD, making it to the semi-finals of the 400M, Oscar is reported to have said that “being disabled doesn’t have to be a disadvantage.” This is the exact message that we at Sportable strive daily to put out there in an effort to change perceptions that exist about individuals with physical disabilities.

Amidst the excitement to profile his story there was of course controversy …the fact that he was able to compete in itself is a significant victory. It comes after a four-year battle for eligibility, which saw Pistorius and a cadre of U.S. scientists take the IAAF (International Association of Athletics Federations) to court in 2007 and 2008, arguing that his carbon-fiber legs didn’t give him an advantage over his able-bodied counterparts nor endanger other runners. Four years, countless arguments, and forever dreams – all in the hopes of running a sub 45-second 400 meters while milling around the Olympic Games as just another athlete. Oscar ran his best in 46.54 seconds, just shy of his personal goal but, a major statement made on behalf of the entire disability community–one that focuses on ABILITIES versus limitations.

Coupled with the excitement around Oscar’s story–Sportable is also excited to have the opportunity for our local athletes to tell their own stories –thanks to NBC12, VCU Health System, and Craft Master Homes!! During the Olympic Games 9 of our athletes have been profiled, featuring 9 of our 13 sports, in 3 separate commercial spots. Please tune into NBC12 to see the videos LIVE and help us to showcase the amazing abilities of our athletes as we continue to Create Opportunities and Transform the Lives of individuals with physical and visual disabilities. There is nothing that exists that is impossible..and it is our job everyday to find creative ways to empower our athletes to aim high—just like Oscar!!!