SpoFit manager Amber Blanchard, ABIL President and CEO, Phil Pangrazio and MaxinMotion® President Jonah Shacknai.


For More Information Contact Loren_Worthington 602-386-4278  lorenw@abil.org

PHOENIX, AZ—March 22, 2013 – Arizona Bridge to Independent Living  and the MaxInMotion® Foundation are pleased to announce the development of a series of adaptive sports clinics for youth in Arizona. The half-day clinics will introduce children 18 years and under to wheelchair basketball and power soccer for athletes with disabilities.

The clinics will be held at the Virginia G. Piper  Sports & Fitness Center (SpoFit) on May 4, June 8 and July 13, 2013. SpoFit  is located the Disability Empowerment Center at 5031 E Washington St., Phoenix, Arizona.

Players from the Phoenix Banner Wheelchair Suns will be on hand to work with kids interested in wheelchair basketball, and members of the ASU Sun Devils Power Soccer team will work with kids interested in power soccer.

The clinics are designed to introduce children to the sports, allow them to try out the specialty wheelchairs and equipment used in competition, and meet other children who have similar disabilities.  “All too often kids with disabilities, and their parents don’t have access to sports and recreational programs. These clinics will allow the entire family to see what can be gained from team sports participation,” said SpoFit Manager Amber Blanchard.

Wheelchair basketball is played at many levels.  Some universities offer scholarships to wheelchair players, and it is a Paralympic sport. The Phoenix Wheelchair Suns have four teams including a co-ed youth squad.  Power Soccer has been played for three decades, but has seen a striking increase in popularity of late with the advent of new technology. The sport is played on a basketball court and athletes use power wheelchairs with front guards to move a large ball down the court and attempt to score much like traditional soccer.

“SpoFit’s adaptive recreational programs provide important opportunities for youth who otherwise may not be able to participate in sports,” said MaxInMotion® President Jonah Shacknai. “We are proud to support the work they are doing in our community.”

For more information about the clinics visit www.ability.org/sports.

About MaxInMotion®

MaxInMotion® is a not-for-profit foundation dedicated to providing young athletes an opportunity to compete at both the recreational and competitive levels in major youth sports. The Foundation provides financial support directly to youth sports organizations throughout the state of Arizona, to help underwrite inclusion in sports programs of financially challenged boys and girls who would not otherwise be able to participate. MaxInMotion® also develops programs to include special needs populations in youth sports activities. The Foundation embraces the philosophy that youth sports contribute dramatically to character development and personal fitness, and that team participation helps establish values of community, interdependency and collective responsibility. www.maxinmotion.org

About SpoFit and the Arizona Bridge to Independent Living

The Virginia G. Piper Sports & Fitness Center (SpoFit) opened in 2011 and is one of only two centers specifically designed to host sports, fitness, and recreational activities for people with disabilities in the U.S.  SpoFit is a program of Arizona Bridge to Independent Living (ABILITY360), the largest independent living center in Arizona.