Northeast Passage

I frequently attend different events put on by Northeast Passage at the University of New Hampshire in Durham.  According to their website, “Northeast Passage, founded in 1990, is a nationally recognized leader in the provision of innovative therapeutic recreation services. Northeast Passage delivers disability-related health promotion and adapted sports programs throughout New England. Northeast Passage is a program of the University of New Hampshire and is an affiliate of Disabled Sports USA.” Visit for more information.

water-skiingDoesn’t this picture just make you long for summer weather? I’ve tried water skiing with them, which I found quite enjoyable, for a while!  It didn’t help that it was a cold evening in late spring.  My first run was quite exhilarating and uneventful. However, my next run proved a little more nerve-wracking as I got too complacent and fell into the water.  Granted the staff was right there by my side to help me out, however, my Ataxia seems to affect my ability to hold my breath so I found flailing under water quite frightening.  So I don’t think I’ll be participating in this event again anytime soon.

SDC10857Even though I own a trike of my own, I like to rent this small transportable trike from them.  It actually fits in the back of my little Nissan Versa.   I also got to ride one of their trikes at last year’s Walk’n Roll in Auburn.

Another example of what I’ve done there is attending a self Defense seminar offered by Natural Motion Martial Arts of Scarborough, Maine in conjunction with the Northeast Passage.  This seminar was specifically designed for people with disabilities, I learned strategies and techniques for defending myself against danger while increasing my confidence level.  Besides the obvious, of not getting myself into the situation where I’m alone and vulnerable, they had me holding on to the attacker with one hand, for balance, while doing things like kicking. (This was all before Denim, and now I feel my biggest defense is the fact that I have a Great Dane by my side!) For more information on Natural Motion Martial Arts, visit:

SDC10652At another time, I tried something new under the direction of Northeast Passage.  I tried Nordic Skiing!  This trip caught my eye as I used to enjoy cross-country skiing very much when I had a semblance of balance.  Currently, my husband, Rich takes the kids and I just stay home.  This experience opened entirely new opportunities as I learned how to ski SITTING DOWN!  Skiing sitting down uses a double pole technique.  They had ski frames that I sat on that mounted to the skis.  I used regular poles but shorter ones and double poled to move forward.  It was extremely tiring and I don’t think I’ll be trying that one again anytime soon either.

All in all, Northeast Passage is a great resource!  Ya, our Ataxia may be limiting but I am willing to look into new ways to possibly enjoy the activities I participated in before Ataxia.


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