SAN ANTONIO — The charity and veteran services organization says its adaptive sports program has been going on for a year now. Organizers teamed up with ‘South Texas Regional Adaptive and Para Sports’ to provide veterans with adaptive equipment.
Veterans with all types of injuries including amputations and other physical impairments participated in the clinic. While the Wounded Warrior Project pays for veterans from across the country to participate, local veterans are encouraged to come. They offer a variety of sports including football, softball, basketball, soccer and cross country skiing.
Corey Wright, Wounded Warrior Project adaptive sports specialist, has helped rehabilitate veterans with the Army before he worked for the organization. He shared how sports help warriors in their recovery process. The Wounded Warrior Project did a survey and found 32.6 percent of the respondents said physical activity is one of the best ways they cope with their stress.
“With our organization, it’s all about a holistic approach. So, not only is it building their physical stamina, endurance and learning other ways to be physical but just the mindset that it gives them of camaraderie,” he said. “They’re getting benefits they don’t even realize in the moment but they can carry forward.”
KENS 5 spoke with army veteran Rene Maldonado from San Antonio who participated in the clinic. The bullet wounds he sustained on his arm and leg still affects his mobility and he suffers from other physical problems with his stomach. Maldonado said adaptive sports has become his therapy.
“Better than any medication, better than any other therapy,” said Maldonado. “The success I have with these sports, carry over to rest of my life and people feed off of that. Other veterans, your kids.”
The Wounded Warrior Project holds clinics across the nation. The San Antonio clinic that was held at Morgan's Wonderland is over but the organization can connect veterans to local groups that have adaptive sports teams. For more information, click here.