LivAbility Magazine
2 kayaks on Big Bear Lake. Mountains and lake houses in the background.

By Gus LaZear
VP & General Manager
Ability360 Sports & Fitness Center

Photo by Andy Templeton

As temperatures in Phoenix climbed to triple digits, participants in the Abilty360 Wounded Warrior Project enjoyed a challenging weekend of hiking, kayaking and paddle boarding in the pleasantly cooler San Bernardino Mountains.

The Ability360 Sports & Fitness Center has served as a Physical Health and Wellness Provider for the Wounded Warrior Project since 2013. Wounded Warrior Alumni-sponsored memberships cover full access to the Center, personal training sessions and access to the outdoor adventure programs offered regionally.

The Ability360 Sports & Fitness Center has served as a Physical Health and Wellness Provider for the Wounded Warrior Project since 2013.

After kayak orientation in the Abilty360 pools, the Warriors enjoyed weekly trips to Bartlett Lake and Lake Pleasant to improve their overall health and wellness and sharpen their skills and endurance with an eye toward a trip to Big Bear Lake, CA, in May.

Angel Flight West logo

Angel Flight West is a volunteer pilot organization based in Santa Monica, CA, linking private aircraft and commercial airline partners with people in need. The costs of all flights are donated. Angel Flight West arranges free air transportation for people who need to access medical care and other humanitarian purposes.

This trip was a great collaboration between the Wounded Warrior Project Physical Health and Wellness program, Ability360, United States Adaptive Recreation Center (providing the Big Bear Lake activities) and the volunteer pilots of Angel Flight West. Big thanks to Arizona Disabled Sports for stepping up to provide the kayak facilitation in Arizona to prep the Warriors for this awesome adventure! Great teamwork!

Post-911 veterans registered as WWP alumni are eligible for our Wounded Warrior Project. The WWP program includes fitness, nutrition, wellness, hiking, kayaking, camaraderie and peer contact. We also offer our Military Access Pass to all current and past military members for a $25 annual fee. The MAP program offers unlimited facility access and discounts on personal training sessions.

Contact Sarah Olson, Military Program Coordinator for more information.

Gus LaZear

Gus LaZear
VP and General Manager

LaZear’s background includes more than 18 years of experience managing major programs and initiatives in rehabilitative medicine, recreational therapy, outdoor adventures and other adaptive programming for people with disabilities. For the last six years, LaZear handled responsibilities as lead therapeutic recreational therapist at the Barrow Neurological Institute at St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix. LaZear earned a master’s of Business Administration, with an emphasis in Health Systems Management, from Grand Canyon University and a Bachelor of Science in Therapeutic Recreation from California State University Northridge.