Just Say No to Curbs

Nothing goes together worse than curbs and wheelchairs. Well maybe square wheels and wheelchairs, but that’s another blog post entirely. The thing about curbs – they’re everywhere.

They’re a beacon of modern-day society, keeping pedestrians and vehicles safe from one another, but they weren’t exactly created with people in wheelchairs in mind. Some wheelchairs, or rather wheelchair-users, can do a bang up job of popping curbs, but for most wheelchair-users, curbs are as limiting as a 2 foot thick steel door.

There are however several tricks wheelchair-users can learn to no longer let curbs hold them back. Some may be tricky, but they all work. Check out our curb-traversing videos below. Read this entry

SCI Superstar: Erik Kondo

No one likes to feel vulnerable, but when you experience life as a person with a spinal cord injury, that’s one of the number one feelings that overwhelms you. Erik Kondo however refused to feel this way.

A T4-5 paraplegic from Lexington, Massachusetts, Erik decided to combat this feeling by learning self-defense skills through martial arts, and he is now one of the most talented martial artists with a disability in the world and is now a 3rd degree black belt.

From applying his self-defense knowledge to help to protect women with disabilities online to showing newly injured people how to be independent, read on to learn about the fearless SCI superstar who’s using his talents to help others, Erik Kondo. Read this entry

Self-defense, wheelchair style

Have you seen the episode of Celebrity Death match with the tough (and heavily tattooed) quad rugby player, Mark Zupan? He pretty much kicked Chris Pontius’ butt, and it was awesome.

It’s about time the world saw that wheelchair-users can have mad self defense skills. There are a ton of us out there, and you’ll find us at every level of ability (I still have a ways to go).

We can have great upper-body strength, so hey, shouldn’t be all that surprising right? And the following two videos you’re about to see are the BEST of the best when it comes to wheelchair self-defense.

This first video comes from the enlightened self-defense school in San Diego, Jing Chen Koushu. The founder Greg, may be able-bodied, but holy cow is he one of the best self-defense trainers I’ve ever seen for wc-users.

He’s trained Therese Riedel, (a very buff) C5 quad, some of the most intense wheelchair self-defense moves I’ve ever seen anyone her level of spinal cord injury do. Read this entry

8/1/11: Podcast #76 – Self-defense and online predators

In episode #76 of No Free Rides, Tiffiny is joined by Erik Kondo, a paraplegic and self-defense and online safety expert. They discuss how to stay safe in the physical world, as well as protecting yourself online, namely from wheelchair fetishists.