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jenisautistic
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06 Aug 2014, 8:59 pm

My thoughts on the Special Olympics are mixed. For one thing I would love to be an athlete And at the same time a fan. I love name we are all winners in something You just have to find out what it is but hate that they don't document a lot. And people don't consider it as good as the regular Olympics. I would have for I it all disabled individuals who needs a boost of self-esteem. fun and accomplishment . All the bias kills me inside

As I mentioned it is wonderful despite what others say. I want to be swimming in the Special Olympics.


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Your Aspie score: 192 of 200 Your neurotypical (non-autistic) score: 9 of 200 You are very likely an Aspie PDD assessment score= 172 (severe PDD)
Autism= Awesome, unique ,Special, talented, Intelligent, Smart and Mysterious


skibum
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06 Aug 2014, 9:20 pm

Jen if you want to be a Special Olympics athlete you should do it. It would be great for you to be able to enjoy that. You can be an athlete and a fan.


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LocksAndLiqueur
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06 Aug 2014, 10:13 pm

Before I applied for the job I have now, I applied for a position as a security guard for the special olympics. I ended up with a part time job picking blueberries that I supplement by doing just about anything else I could find. I wasn't surprised considering the fact that I've never done anything even close to working as a security guard before. Other than that, I've never had any experiences involving the special olympics. I see no reason why someone with autism (or some similar neurological abnormality) couldn't be as successful athletically as a neurotypical.

I used to play (american) football in middle school and I pretty well dominated everyone else. I got teased a lot and consequently ended up beating up on the rest of the team as much as I could get away with during practice, but other than the social element, I did exceptionally well. I later found that I did quite well in contact sports that didn't require me to rely on a team. I participated in a local tae-kwon-do academy for a while before it got shut down (I reached purple belt, left for couple years, then had to start from the beginning because I cancelled my enrollment. When it got shut down, I had my second green belt). I would occasionally meet up with other former members of the school in the park with street clothes and sparring gloves (because I didn't want to have to bring the duffel bag I kept all my gear in) and took turns sparring or practicing disarmament techniques so our skills wouldn't grow dull with time. It was a lot more interesting at the park because we attracted people's attention.

In September I'm going to start taking a brazilian jiu jitsu class with a former philosophy instructor of mine. I figure it'll help make me more well-rounded as a martial artist since tae-kwon-do is mostly about striking (so much so that grappling is prohibited during sparring) while jiu jitsu is mostly about grappling (so much so that striking is prohibited during sparring).

I guess my point is that I have an official diagnosis of ASD and have been able to compete with neurotypicals all my life. The reason I wouldn't ever want to enter the special olympics is the dogma surrounding it; the image that it's just for "retards". I'll stick to bouncing between legitamate establishments and less formal venues in which to practice and compete. I'm a lot more comfortable with that than putting myself in a situation where I'll be seen as something less than who I am.



rapidroy
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06 Aug 2014, 10:38 pm

Some of us have awful physical coordination that even with intervention will never be good enough to play "regular" sports and be half-way competitive or maybe even safe, myself included although some can play sports just fine so its really a subjective case-by-case issue as to if an autistic person should be an Special Olympics athlete or not.

I was offered the chance to be in the Special Olympics at age 11 post AS Dx, I chose not too because I would rather be last and know where I really stand at something then to win a match without the good players although I may have lost at that too. I dislike being made the centre of attention with the primary attraction being my faults. I wanted to be seen as normal and do things the normal way so the SO surly did not fit in with that. While I suck at stick and ball type sports I can drive a race car with at the worst some degree of success so I am content with focusing and drawing athletic glory on that. I also did not want to spend an entire day participating in activities that were known to be boring and frustrating.

All power to you if you want to do it though, it may be really fun and there is nothing wrong with that, don't let my personal preferences put you off.

The "normal" Olympics are a bigger deal because they are in theory(perhaps not in practice) the best athletes the world has to offer(NT, aspie, whatever) competing, the SO is a group of special people playing for fun so it is right that the regular Olympics gets top billing. For the record I actually don't care for the "normal" Olympics much for a variety of reasons however I do have respect for the record breakers and effort put forth by the athletes and of course envy the genetically amazing bodies these people were lucky to be born with!



skibum
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07 Aug 2014, 12:39 am

I am a Special Olympics athlete and I think it's a great opportunity for any person who is eligible no matter how skilled or unskilled you are. They take you and help you from wherever you are and that is one of the things that makes it so wonderful. There is no judgement, and whatever your skill or functioning level is, it's all good.


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07 Aug 2014, 8:21 am

am athlete for two teams [cheshire and bury] in swimming and boccia and recommend sport for everyone whether crap at it or good.


jen,
will need to find a affiliated group to be accepted and will not be directly competing in the SO as non intelectualy disabled athletes are not accepted;heres the american criteria for it- http://resources.specialolympics.org/To ... le_02.aspx

high functioning/non ID athletes dont directly compete with the special olympics,they join clubs that are affiliated with the SO but are not the SO themselves,the actual special olympics is designed to be a highly supportive environment for those of us with ID.


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skibum
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07 Aug 2014, 8:58 am

KingdomOfRats wrote:
am athlete for two teams [cheshire and bury] in swimming and boccia and recommend sport for everyone whether crap at it or good.


jen,
will need to find a affiliated group to be accepted and will not be directly competing in the SO as non intelectualy disabled athletes are not accepted;heres the american criteria for it- http://resources.specialolympics.org/To ... le_02.aspx

high functioning/non ID athletes dont directly compete with the special olympics,they join clubs that are affiliated with the SO but are not the SO themselves,the actual special olympics is designed to be a highly supportive environment for those of us with ID.
I don't understand. I compete directly with SO.


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KingdomOfRats
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07 Aug 2014, 9:56 am

skibum wrote:
KingdomOfRats wrote:
am athlete for two teams [cheshire and bury] in swimming and boccia and recommend sport for everyone whether crap at it or good.


jen,
will need to find a affiliated group to be accepted and will not be directly competing in the SO as non intelectualy disabled athletes are not accepted;heres the american criteria for it- http://resources.specialolympics.org/To ... le_02.aspx

high functioning/non ID athletes dont directly compete with the special olympics,they join clubs that are affiliated with the SO but are not the SO themselves,the actual special olympics is designed to be a highly supportive environment for those of us with ID.
I don't understand. I compete directly with SO.

have a read of the american criteria link skibum.


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>severely autistic.
>>the residential autist; http://theresidentialautist.blogspot.co.uk
blogging from the view of an ex institutionalised autism/ID activist now in community care.
>>>help to keep bullying off our community,report it!


skibum
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07 Aug 2014, 10:47 am

I have read that and read it several times. But in the US SO is open to Autism Spectrum and to all levels of Autism Spectrum no matter how high functioning. My application says Asperger's ADHD and that is all it says. It is actually very recently that the US has opened up eligibility to high functioning athletes and Autism Spectrum. I know for a fact and I did not sneak in. I met the rep for the first time at the Autism expo last April. I had no intention of ever becoming an SO athlete because I never dreamed that I could be eligible. But the rep talked to me for hours, over many days. I told her my exact situation and I spoke to almost every official in my county at length over the course of a month and they all know my situation completely and they each reassured me that not only was I eligible but that they wanted me as an athlete and that they really encourage high functioning people and Autism Spectrumites. I was very hesitant to apply because I did not want to apply and then be rejected and I did not want to feel out of place or discriminated against because I am a high functioning Aspergian. And they all know about my diagnostic story and status. But after having these very detailed conversations with all of the board including the president of my county SO, whom I have gotten to know quite well, and the recruiting rep, they all assure me that I was not only eligible but welcomed and wanted. But they did say that it is very recently that SO has been opened to high functioning Autism Spectrum and they reassured me many many times that it does not matter how high functioning you are or how good you are at your sport, that if you are on the Spectrum, as long as the doctor signs your application and says you are than you are eligible

I was also concerned because my diagnosis is unofficial even though I was evaluated by people who know what they are talking about. My GP actually refused to sign my SO application because he said that he would only sign it if I paid for a diagnosis from people in his office. But a doctor I had before him who has known me much longer than he has had no problems signing it for me. I also explained this to the SO people and they said that was fine because they knew that I could not afford an official diagnosis and since they have gotten to know me they can tell that it's pretty obvious that I am on the Spectrum so they are not concerned about that. And as long as the doctor has signed the application that is all that matters to them.

But in the US Autism Spectrum is now accepted in SO.

Here is the SO national site page that talks about Autistic SO athletes
http://www.specialolympics.org/Sections ... rce=search


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Last edited by skibum on 07 Aug 2014, 2:38 pm, edited 2 times in total.

jenisautistic
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07 Aug 2014, 11:05 am

KingdomOfRats wrote:
am athlete for two teams [cheshire and bury] in swimming and boccia and recommend sport for everyone whether crap at it or good.


jen,
will need to find a affiliated group to be accepted and will not be directly competing in the SO as non intelectualy disabled athletes are not accepted;heres the american criteria for it- http://resources.specialolympics.org/To ... le_02.aspx

high functioning/non ID athletes dont directly compete with the special olympics,they join clubs that are affiliated with the SO but are not the SO themselves,the actual special olympics is designed to be a highly supportive environment for those of us with ID.


Thanks do you know if they have helpers for people who are not
Very good physically like who could only so spific sports? Like I may be Unable to jump hurdles. Can I be a specialist in swimming?


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Your Aspie score: 192 of 200 Your neurotypical (non-autistic) score: 9 of 200 You are very likely an Aspie PDD assessment score= 172 (severe PDD)
Autism= Awesome, unique ,Special, talented, Intelligent, Smart and Mysterious


skibum
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07 Aug 2014, 11:18 am

jenisautistic wrote:
KingdomOfRats wrote:
am athlete for two teams [cheshire and bury] in swimming and boccia and recommend sport for everyone whether crap at it or good.


jen,
will need to find a affiliated group to be accepted and will not be directly competing in the SO as non intelectualy disabled athletes are not accepted;heres the american criteria for it- http://resources.specialolympics.org/To ... le_02.aspx

high functioning/non ID athletes dont directly compete with the special olympics,they join clubs that are affiliated with the SO but are not the SO themselves,the actual special olympics is designed to be a highly supportive environment for those of us with ID.


Thanks do you know if they have helpers for people who are not
Very good physically like who could only so spific sports? Like I may be Unable to jump hurdles. Can I be a specialist in swimming?
Jen, this information is not accurate for the United States. KOR, I mean no disrespect at all to you whatesoever, it's just that it is not accurate.

Jen, in the US, Autism Spectrum is eligible to be an SO athlete now. It was not that way in the past but now they have opened it up to All functioning levels of Autism Spectrum. If you read the post I wrote above you will see that this is something that I am 100% sure of. And yes, all accommodations you need will be made for you. They will do everything they can to support you so that you can enjoy whatever sports you are able to enjoy. I am on the SO kayaking team in my county and we have one athlete who is wheelchair bound. They have rigged a special seat and outrigger type flotations for him out of PVC pipe so that he can kayak. He is loving it and doing great. You will be just fine if you want to be an athlete and they will provide everything they can to help you with whatever you need. This kayak design was never done before in our area but our head coaches figured out how to make it work for him and it's fantastic. But each sport has a head coach and sub coaches and there are many volunteers to assist the athletes with whatever they need. My husband is a volunteer as am I. Some of us who are high functioning can be both athletes and volunteers. I only volunteer for Equestrian because I like working with the horses while I am waiting my turn on the very long waiting list to be and equestrian athlete. But some of the high functioning athletes volunteer in many capacities. One of the athletes in my area is also a volunteer. She is a world ambassador for SO as well as being on the board of directors. Her name is Loretta Claiborne and she has run the Boston Marathon 8 times. She actually ran 26 full marathons in all I think but Boston is special in that it requires a time trial. You can't just enter it you have to have a qualifying time. So just the fact that she got in one is amazing. And she was one of the top 100 women finishers which is even more phenomenal. There is even a movie about her. But every time I had an apprehension about whether or not I could be an athlete the SO staff here all told me about her and that I should use her as my role model. She actually does have an ID but everyone I speak to at SO in my area keeps telling me that they want to introduce me to her. I will get to meet her very soon and I am very excited to get to know her.

Here is the link to her website:
http://www.specialolympics.org/Sections ... rce=search

But Jen, you can absolutely be a swimmer if that is what you want to do and you can participate in any sport you like that is offered in your area.


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"I'm bad and that's good. I'll never be good and that's not bad. There's no one I'd rather be than me."

Wreck It Ralph