Golf clinics for people with physical challenges offered
Golf clinics for people with physical challenges will be offered June 6 and June 27 at Minot's Souris Valley Golf Course, 4:30-6 p.m. The clinics are for new golfers who want to try the sport but have found it too difficult due to a physical disability and experienced golfers who gave up the game because of a life-changing event such as stroke or amputation.
Reed Argent, a Minot physical therapist, had the idea to develop golf clinics for people with disabilities after he attended a National Amputee Golf Association's First Swing clinic. The First Swing program teaches therapists and golf pros how to use golf as therapy and teach people with disabilities to learn or relearn to play golf.
"The physical-therapy profession, golf and family are my three passions," Argent said. "If I became paralyzed, I would want to regain the ability to play golf as soon as possible."
When approached by Argent, Steve Kottsick, golf pro at Souris Valley Golf Course and John Hoeven Wee Links course, was also on board with the idea of making golf accessible for people with limited mobility.
Argent and Kottsick teamed up with Minot State University's North Dakota Center for Persons with Disabilities staff to address ways to make the game of golf accessible to everyone in the Minot community. Kari Schmidt, director of NDCPD's North Dakota Disability Health Project, knew it was a perfect collaboration and that an adaptive golf cart would be needed.
"Our project's goal is to promote health and wellness for people with disabilities. The idea of an adaptive golf cart was appealing in many ways, it makes the sport inclusive of everyone and being active outdoors is a boost for physical and emotional health," Schmidt said.
A SoloRider, an accessible golf cart, was purchased with funding from a Quality of Life grant awarded from the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation. The SoloRider will be housed at the Souris Valley golf course.
Adults, age 18 and older, are welcome to attend one or both sessions. Physical therapists and golf professionals will be on hand to provide instruction for each person to learn how to accommodate their golf style to allow for maximum potential on the golf course. There is no charge to attend, and equipment will be provided for those who do not have their own. The SoloRider golf cart will be available for use at the clinics.
The clinics are sponsored by NDCPD, First Choice Physical Therapy, Souris Valley Golf Course and Jack Hoeven Wee Links Golf course. To register or for more information, contact Argent at 721-3344, Kottsick at 240-0593 or Schmidt at 858-3048.