9. Rolling The Rim
As you begin to train, listen to your body. If you have any problems or concerns, the
time to address them is while you are training, not at the trailhead on Hike Day.
Listen to your body and take your training seriously. Execute your plan to the best
of your ability, check your ego at the trailhead, and follow your plan. As you train,
if your goal for the day is 7 Kilometers, then go 7k. No further. Just remember,
what goes out, must return - under your own power. As you progress, make your
training excursions longer and more challenging.
Start your training program based upon where you are right now, not where
you want to be! Work to set new and more difficult goals as you progress.
The best way to ensure that you are prepared for The Rim Trail Roll is to do other long strenuous rolls! But before you hit the trails, you will want to do some strengthening exercises and aerobic conditioning to prepare not only your heart and lungs, but also the muscles you will be using while you roll.
Rolling the Rim trail is not new to iConquer. We have worked with a spinal cord injured team in years past with fantastic success. Since that time many new improvements have been made to mobile technology, communications and especially the Rim Trail at Grand Canyon National Park. That is great news because it has opened access to areas of the park that were previously either very difficult or impossible to pass. Many barriers such as steps and curbs have been replaced or removed, so movement on the trail is more inclusive.
For this training site, we continue to research and improve methods of communication with the Spina Bifida Team to make your journey safe and rewarding. To help you prepare, here is a short list of resources (find links below) that we believe will be helpful to you in preparing for your adventure. Please read through the NCHPAD Accessible Fitness Guide and learn about the exercises, equipment and things you can do to get in to the best shape possible during the next few weeks. Please read through the Mobility Management guide to help with specific information about gear, preparedness, technical advice and especially the section about Heat Management. Grand Canyon is likely to be hot, even on the rim during our adventure. Please note the images provided throughout this site. They provide a visual reference about what you can expect to see and experience during your roll at Grand Canyon. For detailed information about most everything Grand Canyon, we only recommend ONE site. HitTheTrail.com is by far and away the best source of reliable information on the Internet.
"When you are moving downhill,
don't put your guide or assistant in the rearview mirror!"
Links To Key Information For Wheelchair Participants for iConquer - Grand Canyon - Mobile Adventures On The Rim Trail.
Here are specific links to information that in addition to this guide, iConquer recommends for training for Grand Canyon. We have selected specific pages from the links provided above that address many of the challenges you may face during your training and visit to Grand Canyon.
One of the biggest challenges facing Grand Canyon explorers is the Heat. Your Expedition is scheduled for late Spring. On the Rim Temperatures can exceed 80 Degrees. Kim Chaney, an occupational therapist suggests “Finding the best media to keep both heat and moisture to an absolute minimum.” She also suggests incorporating “breather holes” into a cushion design. This can help with temperature mitigation.
A more detailed explanation of breather holes and fabric materials can be found here: https://mobilitymgmt.com/Articles/2013/05/01/Heat.aspx?Page=2. Just as with clothing, using a Moisture wicking chair pad, and heat distribution pad can make all the difference. It’s the similar process as buying the right socks. Finding the right fit, comfort, and durability. Also, carrying an ice vest/reusable ice pack, and/or mister that can be easily accessible. The best way to manage heat is prevention. If you already have a system that works well for managing heat please share information because it could help someone else in your team.
Sports and Everyday Life in a Chair (video)
Working Out and Training (video)
This entire manual is a guide that provides information about physical training in a wheel chair. There is information on adaptive equipment, strength building, flexibility exercises, warm up and cool down stretches, cardio vascular and muscle building/endurance. It is rich with training information, illustrations and includes safety information too.
Grand Canyon Information
Rim Trail (NPS - PDF)
# # #