mercoledì 27 aprile 2011

Sports as an escape from the dead end

Quoting Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot, we can say that our society is dominated by the belief that the lives of disabled persons are apparently without meaning or purpose. Suspicion has always influenced the relationships between the disabled and the fully enabled ones, preventing the growth, the positive achievements and the realization of the dreams of people with disabilities. This makes me immediately raise a question, (or is it a doubt?): it is right that I exist? Currently, the first major obstacle in the life of a disabled boy is to overcome the lack of faith in himself: can I make it? Will they laugh at me? In Italy, to fight the distrust, the alienation, the absence of long-term political action – which could be an important response to the decline of human relationships – we are left only with the individual examples given by people who, despite serious difficulties, have been able to find their way out of their stagnant dead end. Their stories are the fundamental tool to spread out an indisputable truth: disability may not actually represent only a limit.
Sports are at the heart of this experience, they represent the driving force of existence for people with disabilities. Physical activity has triggered the rebirth of a person whom I love wholeheartedly and of whom I am proud to be a friend: Massimo Romiti. A few years ago Massimo suffered from a very severe paragliding accident, with such serious injuries to his backbone that he could no longer walk, and was forced on a wheelchair. Then one day he approached rowing, and as in the most beautiful fairy tales, with strength and determination he began walking again. A few days ago, the Circolo Canottieri Aniene Rowing Club, has made a presentation to the press about their first rowing course reserved to young people with disabilities. A project strongly backed and organized by Massimo to affirm how important basic physical activity is, even when carried out at an amateur level, to overcome society’s and even one’s own distrust.

Best Regards
Salvatore Cimmino

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