When a person with a disability needs help with mobility, the first thing they will often look for is a fitness trainer.
But for many people with disabilities, mobility and exercise have become a challenge for them.
One in five people have some form of physical or mental impairment, according to a survey by the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD).
People with a physical or cognitive impairment such as cerebral palsy or sensory processing disorders often lack the mobility or coordination to get around, according the APD.
In many cases, people with disability have limited use of wheelchairs and other mobility aids, meaning they may not be able to use them for a longer period of time.
Many people with mobility disabilities also need a dedicated fitness trainer to manage their physical activity, according a 2014 survey by APD, the largest U.S. advocacy group for people with physical and cognitive disabilities.
The APD study also found that a growing number of people are seeking out mobility and fitness classes and coaching in their community.
For many people, this is their first chance to meet a trainer, or for someone with a mobility disability to get a personal trainer, according it’s director, Karen Kavanagh.
For people with a neurological disability, it can be difficult to find a fitness coach or trainer that meets their needs.
Kavanag says the most common reasons people with the disability do not find a trainer are that they do not want to travel for a class, because of time or distance limitations, and because there is not a particular gym or fitness center that is willing to take them.
“A lot of people who are wheelchair accessible, we know that a lot of them are not willing to travel,” Kavanagar says.
“They don’t have the same level of mobility or are not able to get their feet into a particular spot in the gym.
A lot of times, they don’t feel comfortable coming to the gym and actually sitting at the front of the gym for a workout.
There’s also a stigma surrounding it, that it’s not safe for a person to be in a gym that’s wheelchair accessible.
There is also a lot more stigma surrounding walking and cycling.
The stigma is definitely there.”
It can also be difficult for people who need a trainer to connect with a trainer who is physically able to help with their physical rehabilitation.
For Kavanaga, she is always concerned when a person wants to train for a personal fitness class, as they often do not have a gym membership or are afraid to ask the trainer to take the class with them.
For example, Kavanah has a client with a mental health disorder who needs a fitness instructor to help her move her hands around her neck and arms, or to use the treadmill to help get her heart rate up.
“So it’s really important to find out what kind of personal trainer that person has, or whether they have a disability and that person needs a trainer,” Kavag says.
Kavagh says there is no single way to find an accessible trainer or coach.
“There are lots of different things that you can look into,” she says.
For someone with disabilities who is looking for a trainer or fitness trainer who meets their disability needs, the most important thing is to find the trainer who fits the person’s needs and personality.
“It can be really difficult for someone to find that person because they might be shy or they might not be comfortable with physical exercise or they don�t want to be around people who don’t understand,” Kavaagh says.
It is important to keep in mind that some fitness trainers do not meet people with different physical disabilities.
For instance, some fitness instructors are not certified physical therapists and they can overlook physical disabilities, Kavager says.
Another option is to contact the individual’s local gym or personal trainer and ask to meet with the trainer.
If the person does not want a trainer that is physically unable to help, Kavaag recommends hiring a qualified trainer that matches the person�s disability.
The next step is finding a trainer for the person who has a disability.
It’s important to make sure that the trainer has training experience.
“We need to get to know each other and know each person,” Kaveragh says, “and find out how to be comfortable working with a person who does not meet all of the qualifications that we have.”
To find a qualified personal trainer who matches the needs of your disability, you should ask the fitness trainer you are interested in for more information.
KAVAG: You can find more resources about mobility and rehabilitation here.