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Communication Dans Un Congrès Année : 2014

Accessibility and outdoor activities for people with disabilities


During the last two decades, the development of sports and physical activities for people with disabilities has also extended to outdoor activities. With both the change of mentality and legal developments, skiing, climbing, rafting, diving, paragliding, parachuting, sailing are possible for people in wheelchair, blind or partially sighted or with developmental and learning disabilities. This research realized in a socio-historical perspective proposes to describe and to analyze those outdoors activities. Based on interview and written sources, supplemented by visual data, it highlights the influence of major factors such as material and technological innovation and human help and assistance. For example, wheelchair users who want to enjoy the outdoors can use a off-road wheelchair to walk in the mountains and a “beach wheelchair” to take sea bath. For people with spinal cord injuries, access to mountains and forest depends of special wheelchair guided and pulled by two or three helpers. In France, all those activities composed a wide offer supported by organizations which usually take place in local and specifics areas. But these proposals also benefit from the effect of “nationwide quality initiative for disabled people” supported by the French government based on a ‘labelization’ program of accessible structures, equipments and activities. However, the weakness of this offer is his lack of visibility; it is still difficult to find informations about accessible outdoors activities. Lately, new perspectives appear stimulating different perception of accessibility which is no more reduced to an activity but concerns a whole set of connected resources in a precise area (mountain city, valley, mountain, forest, sea coast …).


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Dates et versions

hal-02119773 , version 1 (04-05-2019)


  • HAL Id : hal-02119773 , version 1


Frédéric Reichhart. Accessibility and outdoor activities for people with disabilities. XIII International Conference of the Spanish Association of Social Research Applied to Sport (AEISAD), Sep 2014, Montréal, Canada. ⟨hal-02119773⟩
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