These Community Members Help Others Keep Fit
The Amputee Coalition’s National Conference is the place for members of the limb loss and limb difference community to connect in person and learn through shared experiences and from experts on key issues and topics of interest.
Limb Loss and Limb Difference Awareness Month is an excellent time to get to know people are doing just that. In this special edition of inMotion Magazine, we introduce you to two people who are excelling in adaptive athletics, and they help people live healthier lives.
Each year adaptive sports sessions are some of the most popular activities at the National Conference, and this year two of the most recognizable faces in adaptive sports, Amy Purdy and Mike Schultz, will deliver keynote addresses.
Both are Paralympic medal-winning snowboarders. Purdy won the bronze medal in 2014 in Sochi, Russia, and Schultz won a gold medal at the 2018 Paralympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
Since becoming an amputee, Purdy has:
- Won a snowboarding bronze medal at the 2014 Paralympics
- Been inducted into the Adaptive Sports Hall of Fame in 2002
- Competed on “Dancing With the Stars” after practicing while she was also in Russia for the Paralympics.
And, her autobiography, On My Own Two Feet More is a New York Times bestseller.
Schultz became an amputee following a crash that resulted in the above-knee amputation of his left leg. Since then he has claimed a world championship in Finland in 2019 and has won multiple World Cup gold medals. He engineered a prosthetic knee to help him return to competition, and he won his first X Games silver medal in adaptive motocross not long after.
Community Members Helping Others Get Active
Two adaptive sport and exercise leaders in the community are Bhavana Kandikonda and Angie Heuser.
Originally from India, Bhavana Shilpa Kandikonda lives just outside of Columbus, Ohio, and travels here and to Australia part of the year. Her busy work schedule doesn’t limit her ability to support members of the limb loss and limb difference community who are looking to be more active.
Kandikonda has been an above-knee amputee for the last 12 years. She is a National Academy of Sports Medicine-certified fitness trainer. Her YouTube Channel, Get Active With Bhavana Shilpa Kandikonda, strives to help others find a happy medium for their bodies to perform to the best of their potential whatever they are doing in their daily lives.
- YouTube: @BhavanaShilpaKandikonda
- Instagram: @bhavana.shilpa
Angie Heuser is certified in advanced equine training and behavior management with focus on equine meditation. She is also a certified personal trainer with certification in fitness nutrition and corrective exercise, an adaptive athlete, blogger, podcaster, homes-chooler, and all-around Be-YOU-tiful Adaptive Warrior, which also happens to be the name of her podcast and blog.
Heuser became an above-knee amputee in 2018; just four months after losing her left leg, she was hitting the ski slopes. As an amputee, she has also surfed along the beaches of Kauai, snorkeled, ridden scooters around the neighborhood with her son, completed the Humana Rock ’N’ Roll Arizona 10K, and more. In her podcast, blog, and social media, she gives tips for staying motivated and active, living life as an amputee, and developing the sacred relationship between an amputee and their prosthetist – Picking a Prosthetist You Can Grow Old With.
- Be-YOU-tiful Adaptive Warrior: bawarrior360.com
Creating More Opportunities To Participate
Purdy co-founded Adaptive Action Sports, a nonprofit that helps people with disabilities participate in action sports. Schultz founded BioDapt, a prosthetics company that provides prosthetic equipment to many top para athletes.
- Adaptive Action Sports: adacs.org/
- BioDapt: biodaptinc.com
Adaptive Action Sports, and adaptive sports in general, enhance the lives of the limb loss and limb difference community, and demonstrate how the community can INSPIRE TO ELEVATE. The limb loss and limb difference community is full of incredible people who are motivating and encouraging others to get active.
Connect with other adaptive athletes and members of the community. The limb loss and limb difference community is full of people who are supporting, elevating, and motivating others. The Amputee Coalition encourages you to connect with others in the community by joining AC Connect and sharing your experiences and insights.
AC Connect: https://community.amputee-coalition.org/home