Sunday, February 28, 2010


Just because the Olympics are over in Vancouver doesnt mean that they are over for good!!!!


History Of The Paralympics

Prior to World War II, the vast majority of those with spinal cord injuries died within three years following their injury. Following WW II, the medical knowledge regarding spinal cord injuries improved dramatically, which then translated into improved rehabilitation techniques. In 1944, wheelchair sport and recreation were introduced as forms of treatment and rehabilitation for people with spinal cord injuries by Sir Ludwig Guttmann at the Stoke Mandeville Hospital in Aylesbury, England. Within four years, sport as therapy developed into an official competition with the development of the World Stoke Mandeville Wheelchair Games.

In the U.S. and Canada wheelchair sports were introduced in a similar manner at rehabilitation hospitals, and in 1958 clubs in the U.S. hosted national games. In 1960, the first "Paralympic" Games were held in Rome, and in 1964 the second were held in Tokyo. Robert Jackson, working as an orthopedic consultant with the Canadian Olympic Team witnessed the Games and noted to Guttmann his disappointment with Canada's absence. Guttmann responded by expressing his own feelings regarding the apparent ambivalence shown by the Canadian Paraplegic Association (CPA) towards sport and recreation. In Guttmann's view, the CPA was preoccupied with occupational rehabilitation, while completely ignoring the benefits of sport. Jackson left promising to organize a Canadian team for the 1968 Games in Israel (Pady, 1984).

The international wheelchair sport scene continued to evolve and in 1966, the second Commonwealth Paraplegic Games were held in Kingston, Jamaica. Here, Ben Reimer represented Canada and was named Canadian athlete of the year

. Reimer's success motivated a number of Winnipeg natives to approach the organizing committee for the 1967 Winnipeg Pan-American Games to request the inclusion of a wheelchair basketball game (A. Simpson, personal communication, June 3, 1997). Their requests were rebuffed, but they prevailed to host separate games.

In the United States, 1975 was significant in that President Gerald Ford formed the President's Committee on Olympic Sports. The findings from this commission helped create the Amateur Sports Act of 1978, which then resulted in the creation of the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) as the coordinating, agency for all amateur sport in the U.S., forcing the USOC to establish the Committee on Sports for the Disabled and to integrate disability sport within its structure (Dunn, 1997). In 2001 U.S. Paralympics was created as a division of the USOC with several disabilities and specific sports under its auspices (

One of the disability sport organizations that develops athletes for the U.S. Paralympic teams is the National Wheelchair Athletic Association founded in 1956 with its name changed in 1994 to Wheelchair Sports USA. The impetus for this organization grew from returning war veterans and during its formative years was funded by the Bulova Watch Company, whose Executive Director Ben Lipton was the Wheelchair Sports USA's Chairman for 25 years ( TheUnited States Association of Blind Athletes was founded in 1976, the United States Cerebral Palsy Athletic Association in 1978 (now named the National Disability Sports Alliance) and the United States Amputee Athletic Association in 1981, which eventually became subsummed by Disabled Sports, USA, along with the Dwarf Athletic Association of America. All are Community-Based Organizations represented by U.S. Paralympics within the USOC.

Organizations like these were also being formalized in Canada, with most created following the hosting of the 1976 Paralympic Games, referred to at that time as the Olympiad for the Physically Disabled and Torontolympiad. The only exception was the Canadian Wheelchair Sports Association which was founded in 1967. The Torontolympiad was the first to include athletes with visual impairments and amputations, while athletes with cerebral palsy would not compete in Paralympic Games until 1980 in Arnhem, Holland.

It was the addition of athletes who did not have spinal cord injuries that forced organizers to change the name of the event from the Paralympics to the Olympiad for the Physically Disabled. "The term Paralympics was studiously avoided because it had the connotation of paraplegic games and so was objected to by the amputee and blind athletes" (R. Jackson, personal communication, July 30, 1997). Paralympics would eventually be chosen as the official term, with Para denoting in parallel to the Olympics and not a shortened version of paraplegic.

The Canadian government firmly supported this multi-disability format and began to recognize and support several new national disability sport organizations. These included the Canadian Amputee Sport Association, the Canadian Blind Sport Association, the Canadian Association of Disabled Skiers, and later, the Canadian Cerebral Palsy Sport Association.

While the creation of new disability sport organizations and multi-disability games provided more equitable opportunities for persons with disabilities, to the Canadian government they also created a number of logistical challenges. The government thus decided to create one umbrella organization
 called the Coordinating Committee of Sports for the Physically Disabled (CC-SFD). In 1980, it was renamed the Canadian Federation of Sport Organizations for the Disabled (CFSOD), and in 1989 the Canadian Paralympic Committee (CPC).

The CC-SFD might not have been created except for political turmoil during the Toronto games. The Canadian federal government's financial commitment for hosting the games was withdrawn at the last minute because of the participation of a South African team and the international ban disallowing their participation because of apartheid policies. The South African wheelchair sports team, however, was racially mixed and for this reason, the International Stoke Mandeville Wheelchair Games Federation (ISMWGF) accepted their participation. The Canadian government eventually relented to public pressure and re-allocated its financial commitment to create and support the CC-SFD (Legg, 2001).

In 1980 the Paralympic Games were held in Arnhem, Holland, as Soviet officials hosting the Olympic Games in Moscow claimed to not have citizens with disabilities. In 1984, the Olympic Games were held in Los Angeles, while the Paralympic Games were hosted in two separate locations because of last minute organizational challenges. Wheelchair events were hosted in Stoke Mandeville, while the other disability sport groups competed in New York. Of particular significance that year was the hosting of demonstration wheelchair events (800 m/women; 1500 m/men) during the Olympic Games. This was the first time an Olympic Games had included wheelchair athletes.

The Seoul Summer Paralympic Games in 1988 marked the beginning of the modern Paralympic movement, with events held in the same venues for both Paralympic and Olympic competitions. Here the Paralympic movement evolved from a disability-based organization to one that was sport focused. This transition was based on seven key recommendations from 23 motions presented at meetings in 1987 as well as impetus from Juan Antonio Samaranch, International Olympic Committee (IOC) President. These motions then led to the creation of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) in 1989 with Canadian Robert Steadward named President, a position he retained for 12 years.

In 1996 the Paralympic Games returned to North America with the 1996 Summer Games hosted in Atlanta and the 2002 Winter Games in Salt Lake City. The Salt Lake City Games were the first to take place under an IOC-IPC cooperation agreement. The Paralympic Games will return to North America in 2010 in Vancouver-Whistler.

The 2000 Sydney Summer Paralympic Games had 3,824 athletes which eclipsed the size of the 1956 Melbourne Olympic Summer Games and the 1998 Kuala Lumpur Commonwealth Games. With this growth have come issues pertaining to athlete recruitment, numbers of classes, the inclusion of athletes with intellectual disabilities, ensuring equitable opportunities for women and those with severe disabilities, and capitalizing on the strengths of professional staff based at the international headquarters in Bonn, along with the cadre of new and experienced volunteers.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Article about THE DISNEY DREAM (from Disney Insider)

Disney Dream Features the Latest in Techno-Cruising

When 2011 rolls around, there'll be a brand-new star joining Disney Cruise Line – and this time it's the ship herself. The Disney Dream, scheduled to make her maiden voyage January 26, 2011, is the third – and largest – addition to Disney's fleet of luxury ocean liners that harkens back to the golden age of cruising while providing an unforgettable vacation for every member of the family.

Disney Dream Features the Latest in Techno-CruisingDue to set sail from Florida's Port Canaveral, the Dream is currently under construction in Papenburg, Germany. Disney Cruise Line's Jason Lasecki talks about the Company's decision to build overseas. "Meyer-Werft is a world-renowned shipyard with incredible craftsmanship and attention to detail ... it's the perfect match between their ship-building expertise and our brand."

Initially the ship is built in 83 individual blocks which, when finished, are welded onto the ship's structure in one of the world's largest covered dry docks. When the ship's ready, the building is flooded to float the ship onto the Ems River. "It's truly amazing ... the entire process takes almost 15 months," Jason adds.

The 14-deck ship mixes early 20th century design with state-of-the-art technology and introduces all-new Guest experiences ... while retaining the best features of her sister ships, the Disney Magic and Disney Wonder. Imagineer Joe Lanzisero, Senior Vice President Creative, discusses the technology used.

"The Disney Dream is the next generation of Disney cruise ships. Much of the thinking is really an extension of everything learned over the last 10 years, but there are several surprises. We're introducing 
AquaDuck, the first on-board watercoaster ever designed. By incorporating elements from the Theme Park slides and Typhoon Lagoon's Crush 'n' Gusher technology, we configured a clear acrylic tube that thrusts Guests out over the side of the ship (150 feet above the ocean's surface). Some of the watercoaster features include traveling through the ship's forward funnel, various uphill portions, and river rapids, which provide a spectacular ocean view. It's a thrill ride that's really on par with our Park attractions."

Innovation continues with another cruise industry first – "virtual portholes." Thanks to Disney magic, inside cabins will feature real-time views of the outside world. "Four cameras will be stationed around the ship's exterior to send a live feed to the virtual portholes. Guests will see the exact same views that the actual porthole cabins provide. Plus, animated Disney and Disney·Pixar Characters will intermittently appear in the portholes," says Joe.

The portholes aren't the only place where Disney magic springs to life – the "Enchanted Art" program blends technology with artwork that celebrates the Company's legacy. As Guests wander throughout the Disney Dream, "Enchanted Art" pieces will actually spring to life via animation. "The Imagineers have done an incredible job in making these look like an actual piece of art, regardless of the medium. It can be a textural oil painting, photograph, or any other art form," Joe explains. Guests will view different sequences each time they look at the pieces, thanks to computer programming.

Many of the age-specific entertainment areas have also seen a sprinkling of Disney magic. Adults can virtually visit many of the world's most famous cities at Skyline, a nightclub featuring panoramic, real-time views of Los Angeles, London, Paris, Tokyo, and Hong Kong, to name a few. Pink, an intimate champagne bar, puts Guests inside a champagne bottle ... with animations appearing on large bubbles scattered throughout the club.

Don't think the Dream, or any other Disney cruise ship, is a floating kiddie ride. Imagineers worked to create trendy environments that allow parents to relive the glory days of their youth ... before kids. As for your offspring, Joe doesn't hesitate to reveal what's in store. "We have the best kids' spaces on the ocean ... and we're always looking to improve on that."

One such area is Vibe, a club exclusively for teens. Complete with green screens as well as uber-cool iPod docking stations and computers, teens have the run of the place – including a private open-air deck – accessible via a members-only swipe card. Joe weighs in on creating entertainment for this age group. "We gave teens a dedicated space where the most important thing is connecting with other teens and social networking."

Younger kids can explore various interactive play spaces that feature multi-player video gaming, computer kiosks, animation instruction, and movie screening areas inspired by "Toy Story," Pixie Hollow, "Monsters, Inc.," and "Finding Nemo." The Oceaneer's Club and Oceaneer's Lab, both borrowed from the classic ships, will eliminate age-specific activities and allow kids to do whatever interests them.

Joe sums it up. "For me, I see an opportunity to touch our Guests on a much deeper level than we're able to in the Theme Parks. These ships are filled with all kinds of new challenges and technologies that are different from the Parks ... the core of what we're delivering is no different from anything else we provide. And that's great Disney family entertainment."

According to both Joe and Jason, there's more to come. Disney Cruise Line is still hiding a few surprises up its sleeve, so stay tuned!

Psalms 23

The Lord is my Shepherd = That's Relationship!

I shall not want = That's Supply! 

He maketh me to lie down in green pastures = That's Rest!

He leadeth me beside the still waters = That's Refreshment! 

He restoreth my soul = That's Healing! 

He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness = That's Guidance! 

For His name sake = That's Purpose!

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death = That's Testing! 

I will fear no evil = That's Protection! 
For Thou art with me = That's Faithfulness! 

Thy rod and Thy staff they comfort me = That's Discipline! 

Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies = That's Hope! 

Thou annointest my head with oil = That's Consecration! 

My cup runneth over = That's Abundance!

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life = That's Blessing ! 

And I will dwell in the house of the Lord = That's Security! 

Forever = That's Eternity!

Face it, the Lord is crazy about you.

Send this to people you are crazy about. 

I thought this was pretty special, just like YOU!!! 

What is most valuable,

is not what we have in our lives, but

WHO we have in our lives!

'Do not ask the Lord to Guide your Footsteps if you are not 

willing to move your Feet'  Peace. 

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

New Book By Dr Ned Hallowell (author of Driven To Distraction) from

Ned and Sue Hallowell Exclusive Interview: “Married to Distraction”

There are a handful of professionals in the field of ADHD who have literally changed my life. Because of the impact they had on me and how their work influenced my own personal life, I decided to change the course of my professional work so that I, too, could help those challenged by ADHD.

One of those people who opened my eyes to understanding my own ADHD as well as my clients’, is Dr. Ned Hallowell. His first book on the topic, Driven to Distraction, which he co-wrote with Dr. John Ratey, was truly life-altering.

I’ve heard Ned present at local and national conferences many, many times over the last 15 years and I never left without a lump in my throat or another wise collection of “Ned-isms”- inspirational stories he shares about his own life- which I continue to bottle up and take home with me to share with my clients, readers and yes, my own family.

I’m proud to call Ned a friend and was thrilled when he and his wife, Sue Hallowell, LICSW, accepted my request to interview them about their new book, which they wrote with the help of their colleague, Melissa Orlov.

Married to Distraction, Restoring Intimacy and Strengthening Your Marriage in an Age of Interruption“show(s) you how to make your relationship special, in the way that we all want our number one relationship to be special. We believe in romance, but we also believe in practical advice and dealing with reality.”

Married to Distraction recently received a starred review in Publishers Weekly, the major review publication of the industry. Each week, Publishers Weekly reviews around 25 books and usually only gives two or three of them starred reviews, so this is a major literary achievement. The people who review books for a living think Married to Distraction is excellent. So will you!
The book will be out March 16. Before then, it can be ordered on, Barnes & Noble, and other online outlets. For more information, visit Dr. Hallowell’s website at or join his fans page forMarried to Distraction on Facebook .

1. Can you briefly describe your new book, Married to Distraction, Restoring Intimacy and Strengthening Your Marriage in an Age of Interruption, and what it can offer partners where one or both has ADHD?

This book grows out of our 21 year marriage, and our combined 50 years of clinical experience in working with couples. We look at how the issues of distraction, interruption, overbooked-ness, crazy busy-ness, pervasive clutter, and non-stop information--so common both in modern life and in life with ADHD--impact marriage and other close relationships.

We offer a host of practical solutions to the most common problems, such as, how to break “the big struggle;” how to reverse the parent-child dynamic that so often develops between spouses; how to make time for what matters most; how to develop genuine and useful understanding of the other person; and many other common issues that come up in marriages these days.

We close the book with a workbook called “30 Minutes, 30 Days” in which we give couples exercises to do together, 30 minutes a day over 30 days, to help develop better communication, closeness, and empathy. Many people have told us that the workbook itself is worth the price of the book.

2. Why did you decide to write this book? Aren't there others out there that already cover this topic? What makes yours different?

We decided to write this book because we have learned so much about the topic through our own marriage (Ned has ADHD, Sue does not) and through our vast clinical experience. Ned has an M.D., is Board Certified in Psychiatry, taught at the Harvard Medical School for over 20 years and has been seeing patients regularly in private practice since he finished training in 1983. Sue has an LICSW, taught at Simmons School of Social Work for 12 years, and has been seeing patients in private practice for about 25 years. Both of us have been treating couples and families in which one or more people have ADHD for decades.

Since we have seen and learned so much over the years, we are uniquely equipped to write this book.

While there are some excellent, well-researched books out there that address couples and ADHD, there is no book on the topic we know of written by a couple in which one partner has ADHD, nor is there a book written by two experts who, for decades, have been actively engaged in treating couples where there is ADHD.

Because we have seen so much and worked with so many couples and families, not to mention lived our own years together, we have learned in the trenches of true life the importance of empathy, communication, and positive energy in couples. We also see a positive side to ADHD, not just an endless list of negatives, not because we "believe in" a positive side, but because our immense clinical experience has shown it to us, time and time and again. But we also have seen how frustrating and terribly destructive untreated ADHD can be in a marriage or a family. We know that getting the diagnosis and proper treatment can be utterly life-changing.

For those reasons, this is a unique book, one that can save a marriage or make it better.

3. What is the biggest challenge in an ADD marriage?

The biggest challenge is developing mutual empathy and understanding. Without that, couples slip into the blame game. They struggle and fight. The non-ADHD spouse comes to feel as if she is the parent, not the spouse, of her ADHD mate. The ADHD spouse feels as if he is the naughty child, always being reprimanded or scolded, always slipping up, always causing problems. What Sue and I call “The Big Struggle” quickly becomes the standard pattern of interaction.

4. Can you offer 2 tips from the book that will help improve marriages when ADHD is part of the picture?

We’ll offer three, because the first one, which may be the most important one, can be difficult to carry out due to the shortage of doctors who truly know how to treat adult ADHD.

1) Make sure both spouses understand what ADHD is, and make sure that it is properly treated in the ADHD spouse by a doctor who really knows what he or she is doing, i.e., someone who has extensive experience with adults who have ADHD.
2) Set aside time every day to discuss and plan. Build a boundary around this time. No interruptions! Make a rule that during this time there is to be no blaming, fighting, or leaving the room. The purpose of this time is to discuss--not argue--and to plan what has to be done that day, that week, that month. As you do this, you will gradually learn how to communicate rather than struggle, and solve problems rather than create more of them.
3) Try to understand conflicts from the other person’s point of view. This is often difficult! But doing it gradually leads to mutual understanding, better communication, and deepening of love and respect.
5. How can one differentiate enabling vs supporting an ADHD spouse?

Enabling is a concept that comes from the world of addictions. The classic example is the wife who covers for her alcoholic husband, thus allowing him to continue to drink and not deal with the negative consequences.

A similar pattern can develop if one spouse has ADHD and the other spouse covers for all the missed appointments, obligations, and other mishaps that commonly occur in life with ADHD.

Instead of covering--which means doing the work of two people--the non-ADHD spouse can show support by making sure the ADHD spouse gets the help he or she needs. If the spouse rebuffs such help, the non-ADHD spouse should allow the ADHD spouse to face the consequences of his mistakes. That is actually more supportive in the long run than covering is, because it forces the ADHD spouse to deal with the problems he or she is creating.

The non-ADHD spouse can say, “I love you so much I am not going to help you become an invalid. I am not going to help you disown responsibility. I am not going to help you become less of a person than you could become. I am going to risk your anger, even your rejection, because I love you so much. I am not going to collude with you in bringing you down.”

6. How does an ADHD partner, who most likely struggles with distractions, impulsivity and/or inattention, work on improving communication and connection with his/her partner?

Above all, get the ADHD treated! As I mentioned above, this is not always easy, as doctors who know how to treat adult ADHD can be hard to find. But, you can contact the nearest medical school’s department of psychiatry and ask for a referral. Usually, academic centers know of skilled professionals in this area. Search high and low. Your marriage may hang in the balance.

In addition, read about ADHD. As you understand the complexity of this trait, its many manifestations, both positive and negative, you will develop methods of dealing with it that work for you. In addition to our new book,Married to Distraction, which is aimed at marriages, I’d also suggest reading Delivered from Distraction, which gives an in-depth look at ADHD in adults and contains many suggestions on how to deal with it.

Finally, make sure the person with ADHD is working on making changes he really wants to make. If he is only doing what he’s told, with no real buy-in on his part, the efforts will soon fizzle.

7. How long have you been married and how do you make it work, given ½ of you has ADHD? What is the secret to your successful marriage?

We got married in 1988. We both agree that the secret to our marriage is the secret to most marriages that work. So it is no secret. It is that we respect each other a ton. We argue, we fight, we disagree, but there has never been any doubt in either of our minds but that we respect each other.

Of course, that’s not all it takes. We also like each other, and we have fun when we’re together.

And we share a common dream. This is particularly helpful. We both had difficult childhoods, so our common dream is to give our 3 kids the happy childhood neither of us had. We make many sacrifices of time and money for our children, but they do not feel like sacrifices because they are in the service of this dream we both cherish.

8. What makes an ADHD marriage different from a non ADHD marriage?

LOL. So much! But then again, so little. At some level, all marriages face the same problems: getting done what needs to get done; financial planning; deciding what temp to set the thermostat at, what TV show to watch, what allowance to give the kids, whose house to have Thanksgiving at, etc.; and most of all, understanding the person you’re married to.

ADHD can speed everything up, introduce more chaos than most couples contend with, make communication especially difficult, timeliness a struggle, and bill-paying a dilemma. But, if understood and managed well, ADHD can also make a marriage lively, passionate, full of energy and new ideas, adventuresome, full of humor and wit, and just full of exuberance and love.
We really believe that if people learn how to manage ADHD correctly, it can become an asset not only in the life of the person who has it, but in the life of the couple and family as well.

9. How does having children affect an ADHD marriage?

More LOL. With children come a ton more responsibilities than you ever had before. You give up your time, your money, your energy, your sleep, pretty much everything for these wonderful little ones. There is so much more to plan! And planning is not easy for someone who has ADHD. There is so much more to do. And prioritizing is not easy for someone who has ADHD. There is so much more to attend to, and attention is not consistent in someone who has ADHD.

BUT, if you learn how to manage all this, chaos need not reign. If you visited our home, you would not find perfection, but you would find that we are a very close and warm family. We argue, but we love each other to pieces. And our kids are growing up to be wonderful people---so far, knock on wood, thank God.

10. Ned, you often say in your presentations that one of the best ways to treat ADHD is to make sure you marry the right person. Given one's impulsivity, inattention, etc., would you say that many adults with ADHD do NOT marry the right person?

Many adults with ADHD in fact do NOT marry the right person. Nor do they find the right job. They make the same mistake in mate selection that they make in job selection. They marry and/or work for a caricature of a controlling 5th-grade teacher. They marry and/or work for a demeaning, reprimanding, angry person. Why do they do that? Because they got the idea, back in about 5th. grade, that that’s what they needed! Of course, that is the last person they need. They need someone who loves them for who they are and who can help bring out the best in them.

11. Sue, how do you manage living with a house full of ADHD family members? If I remember correctly, at least two of your kids have ADHD. Life must be pretty interesting, if not downright hectic for you. Any advice?

All 3 of our kids have ADHD--and wouldn’t trade it for the world. But yes, my day starts off with me having to organize many people’s lives. This is actually a skill of mine. For example, I am Chair of the Board of Trustees at the private school all our kids attended pre-K through 8th grade. I’m a good organizer and the social worker in me likes to find each person’s strength and help that to grow.

If I had expected or demanded of myself--and my family--that we be House Beautiful with recipes color-coded and everyone marching to my orders, I would have been sorely disappointed with what I got.

But that’s not what I was looking for. I wanted an interesting man I loved, and I wanted kids who would become whoever they were meant to become. I have that, and I have a career that I love as well.

It’s also important that I have a life of my own outside the family. I am part of many groups outside the home. I do not feel that I have to ride herd on every member of the family every minute of every day.

12. What is the "30 Minutes, 30 Days" Workbook included in your book?

We end the book with a workbook that gives an exercise couples can do together each day for 30 days. They spend 30 minutes together, allow no interruptions, and do the exercise. Each one is aimed at improving empathy and communication. As we said above, many people have told us the workbook alone is worth the price of the book.

Order Married to Distraction at Amazon.

Copyright © 2010 Terry Matlen, ACSW
Contact Terry Matlen at