Framework of the
are in France, 3 ways of enjoying the fun of off road wheelchair riding:
within an association, with the assistance of a professional or by
ORWC is used to descend under the riders control for persons with
reduced mobility, permitting riding in an outdoor environment.
Riding at speed or in competition requires an organization
taking specific safety precautions--it should not be improvised.
You must verify with your doctor that your state of health is
compatible with this type of exercise (level of self-control,
environment, prevention of pressure sores, positions etc) and prepare
specific equipment for your situation.
Regular practice is normally organized on paths that can be irregular
but sufficiently wide. These paths must be known beforehand to know
the profile and any eventualities or difficulties they may present. Respect private properties (crops and fences) and obtain the
necessary authorization (from owners, town halls, lifts, etc.)
Never go alone: a group with at least 2 companions is obligatory
to help in case of long flat trails, ascents or unexpected
developments in the terrain (ravines, fallen trees, snow…) Competent
professionals are at your disposition (see heading with
whom to practice )
Note that mountain conditions are prone to rapid change: find out
before you leave (weather, state of paths) at the tourist offices or
from professionals concerned.
Safety requires that you always wear a mountain bike helmet and check
the condition of your equipment (tires, brakes, steering, tightness of
components, emergency kit…)
Choose terrain according to your level of handicap, level of expertise
and self-control. Prepare
a progressive programme and always be in control of your speed.
The speed should always be maintained below the riders capacity
and be careful of competitiveness arising in the presence of other
riders. The riding
technique of these chairs becomes comfortable rapidly and gives the
impression of mastering the chair.
Don’t let yourself be fooled and become complacent.
Apply general advice and precautions of all outdoor pursuits (preparation,
equipment, road sense, behavior in case of accident or incident). A
means of radio contact is useful and well recommended.
can guide ORWC
qualified instructors can guide ORWC riders. Qualifications currently
approved in France are the mountain bike state diploma (BEES VTT) or
the "accompagnateur moyenne montagne" state diploma (BEES
AMM). In addition to the above diplomas, getting the certificate
("Certificat de Qualification Handisports"), given by the
"Fédération Française Handisport" is very highly
training is given by the Fédération Française Handisport to
the professionals already qualified in another field (such as mountain
guiding or mountain biking). It gives them the specific skills needed
to guide persons with a physicall or visual impairement. A formal
qualification (Certificat de Qualification Handisport) is given
when the 2 modules of the training have been succesfully completed:
- module A, common
to all sports, provides the theoritical and practical knowledge
- module B, specific to one field of expertise (such as
mountain guiding), provides the practical and teaching skills needed
to guide physically challenged persons, as well as the in depth
knowledge of the adapted equipment available.
practice this activity, you need to be fully insured for any damage or
injury to people or material which you might be responsible for. The
Licence from the Fédération Française Handisport (FFH) provides
coverage for the ORWC practice.
- To be developped later -
Last update : 02/13/2002 08:57