SPORTS

Get In The Games: Adaptive Arena welcomes kids with disabilities to play sports

May 23, 2024, 6:35 PM | Updated: 6:37 pm

BLUFFDALE — New businesses are welcomed into local communities all the time. However, the ribbon-cutting ceremony for a new business in Bluffdale just felt different.

“We are so excited to finally be focusing on real live kids right in front of us,” said Ashley Guymon.

For more than a year, Guymon has been working on opening Adaptive Arena. It is a place where kids with some type of disability can play sports specifically designed for them.

“I have several family members with autism, and I look at what they are being involved in and what adaptive sports have done for their child and for their family,” Guymon said.

For Lexi Green, who loves playing goalball, a sport designed for those who are blind, having a place like this helps build confidence.

Lexi Green playing goalball with other kids.

Lexi Green playing goalball with other kids. (Mark Wetzel, KSL TV)

It is certainly different than other gyms she has been to.

“With other gyms, I feel like I am not included,” said Lexi. “With this gym, everyone feels like they are included.”

Lexi Green playing goalball.

Lexi Green playing goalball. (Mark Wetzel, KSL TV)

That is exactly what Lexi’s mom says all kids want to feel, regardless of their background.

“The kids want to be just like everybody else. They want to be involved in everything. They want to be a part of things, and sometimes that is impossible without some adaptations,” said Christianne Green. “This makes it possible for them to have fun and compete in sports.”

Being in a wheelchair doesn’t mean you can’t shoot baskets.

Just ask Drew Cheever. He is thrilled to have a court to play wheelchair basketball with other kids like him. It kind of evens the playing field.

“The hoop, the people, the room in general. I like it. I have been playing basketball for a long time,” he said.

Kids at the Adaptive Arena playing wheelchair basketball.

Kids at the Adaptive Arena playing wheelchair basketball. (Mark Wetzel, KSL TV)

Kids can play on teams in different leagues in wheelchair basketballgoalballsitting volleyballwheelchair pickleball, and boccia.

Adaptive Arena is a 3000-square-foot gym where the owners are serious about providing adaptive indoor sports in what they call the proper way.

Plus, as Adaptive Arena continues to grow, you never know when the next Team USA Paralympic Medalist may get their start here.

“They could come from Bluffdale,” said Guymon. “We hope to have some come from Bluffdale.”

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Get In The Games: Adaptive Arena welcomes kids with disabilities to play sports