Many trail users seek trails that offer more adventurous experiences, such as adaptive mountain biking (aMTB), paddling, and skiing.
Adaptive outdoor recreation is an activity that has been modified or adapted to be accessible and inclusive for all users. The modifications or adaptations made to the activities may involve the use of specialized equipment or assistive devices, changes to the environment or terrain, or modifications to the activity itself. The goal is to ensure that all individuals have the same opportunities to participate in outdoor recreational activities and to remove barriers that may prevent them from doing so. There are various types of adaptive trails, for example:
- Adaptive mountain bike trails
- Adaptive boat launches along water routes
- Accessible beach mats to facilitate water and beach access from a trail
Implementing Adaptive Mountain Bike Trails
- Consider making all trails suitable for adaptive use, for example, making all mountain bike trails adaptive trails.
- For information on building aMTB trails, including trail standards, please visit Kootenay Adaptive Sport Association.
Implementing Adaptive Water Access Points
- If you have water access along your trail, consider adding an accessible boat launch.
- Ensure docks and boat launches have a smooth and accessible transition from the pathway.
- Consider adding an accessible beach mat, for example a Mobi-Mat®, to ensure everyone can move around the beaches and access the water.
- Ensure that accessible parking is located nearby.
There are several types of adaptive equipment to facilitate adaptive trail use, including:
- Hand cycles
- Adaptive mountain bikes
- Off-road wheelchairs
- Adaptive kayaks and canoes with stabilizers
- Adaptive cross-country ski equipment
Adaptive Recreation Equipment Lending Libraries
Many individuals require specialized equipment to participate in recreational activities; however, this equipment can be expensive and is often not covered by insurance. Equipment rentals can provide access to this equipment at little or no cost. This can make recreational activities more accessible and affordable for everyone.
- Adaptive recreation equipment lending libraries are community-based initiatives that provide access to specialized equipment and can increase participation in recreational activities.
- If your community is interested in starting an adaptive recreation equipment lending library, check out organizations that have them established: