By Maxim Pimont
L’sports association of Golf of Maisons-Laffitte (ASGML), located in the center of the racecourse, is the best in terms of the development of the disability in golf It houses the handicap center plus golf important in france and in particular thanks to new equipment: the “Para golfer. »
This machine allows people with disabilities (mostly paralyzed) to practice this sport almost autonomously. Jean-Marc is one of the 4 people (2 men and 2 women) with disabilities in the club who have access to this tool.
“There is a good compromise between help and assistance. We are autonomous because well helped by the machine. »
The paragolfer is fully automated because it is electric. The machine thus allows you to ride on all types of terrain that golf courses have and to get into a sitting position and then stand up to make your golf shot.
People are united through three straps : one to the legs, one to the abdomen and one to the stomach. This machine costs almost €30,000and benefited largely from funding from the Ile-de-France Region.
This acquisition responds mainly to a desire of the club and the Region to change the way of seeing disability and ” socialize » people who generally do not have access to sports due to lack of infrastructure. In any case, this is the goal of disability project of ASGML released in 2018.
“Every year there is a clear improvement in terms of physical fitness, mental fitness and socialization because people with disabilities meet people. »
“It allows you to let off steam but it is above all very important for morale, also to achieve things,” adds Jean-Marc, who 15 years ago walked a lot and rode a bicycle.
Because this Handicap project is organized through courses (2 sessions per week for 6 months) within a group of people without disabilities. “We also want to change mentalities by changing the vision that people without disabilities and people with disabilities have about themselves,” adds the president.
This training offers a green card, “like a driver’s license”, which shows that these people are suitable for the practice of “handigolf”. According to the Mansonian club, this project has allowed, in a few years, to launch actions offered to 18 people with physical disabilities (30 by 2024).
Always concerned with accessibility for all, the ASGML has just joined the GolfHer network to try to attract more players from abroad and offer a wide variety of activities. “We are missing women, beginners or confirmed. This platform makes it possible to exchange between players, find lessons and competitions and get advice on practices and equipment”, says Sarah Robertson, president of golf. The ASGML already has almost 33% women against 27% nationally and wants to strengthen this trend.
Caring for people with physical disabilities is very cumbersome because the infrastructure is very expensive. That is why one of the priorities of the ASGML also refers to people in situations of mental disability with 200 people helped since 2018, 80% of them young.
“We work with the IME Chemin des Lauris in Sartrouville and Les Glycines in Saint-Germain-en-Laye, the Jean-Charcot establishment and the Les Canotiers platform in Chatou, for almost 80 sessions a year, with improvements there too. »
This project has been extended to the entire Île-de-France to create a territorial network of 6 disability centers in the Region and finally benefit 2,000 people.
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