Netcare Rehabilitation Hospital hosted its 16th Annual Sports Day on the 4th November 2016, showcasing and encouraging a healthy life style for people living with disabilities. The event started in 2000 and is really aimed at highlighting the positive effect that participation in physical activities and sport has on people in general but especially people living with disabilities.
The day creates a fun and friendly environment for patients undergoing physical rehabilitation from across Gauteng. It serves as a showcase for healthcare workers and medical suppliers to raise awareness of the various rehabilitation services on offer. It also gives successfully rehabilitated individuals the opportunity to share their successes and motivate others currently receiving physical rehabilitation.
The day is structured around fun and competitive activities for all participants, regardless of their level of disability.
The annual Sports Day has grown in popularity each year. In 2015 over 500 attended the day with record community participation. As many of the participants come from disadvantaged communities and have few resources, Netcare Rehabilitation Hospital tries to make the day really meaningful for them by focusing on potential and possibility. Our teams invest a great deal of time and effort to ensure that all the participants are catered for, feel included and have fun. The therapy team ensures that participants compete fairly for prizes that have been carefully selected as appropriate for the participants
Activities on offer this year included, amongst others, wheelchair basketball, walking and wheelchair obstacle races, wheelchair hocker and bean bag hurling. Present at the event was the South African Paralympic rowing team who recently competed in the 2016 Summer Paralympics in Rio de Janeiro. One of their team members delivered a motivational talk on her experience on living with disability to live a rich and rewarding family and professional life.
For the 7.5% of South Africans who are disabled and their families and friends, events like Netcare Rehabilitation Hospital’s Sports Day serve as a reminder of the importance of engaging in community activities and sharing experiences with others. It is important to remember that families and friends of people living with a disability also need support, motivation and inspiration as they too have often experienced considerable trauma.
A number of helpful tips for families and caregivers of people living with a disability on how to better cope in challenging circumstances:
• Do not try to do it all. Make sure you have your own support network to assist you when you need it. Taking care of a person who is living with a disability is often no easy task and there is no shame in asking for help.
• Attend to your own needs as well. Some family members of people living with a disability tend to neglect their own needs. There is nothing wrong with having fun with friends, spoiling yourself and having hobbies. You are entitled to happiness.
• Accept your feelings. When you experience trauma, you will be bombarded by an array of feelings including fear, anger, resentment and sorrow. Do not feel guilty for feeling these things. If you accept your feelings and let them grow and fade naturally, you will be able to attain emotional health much quicker.
For further information regarding any Physical Rehabilitation, contact us on 011 489 1111 or visit our website: www.netcare.co.za