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The 3 Biggest Things I Learned From Working With Disabled Clients

Eric C. Stevens
Coach
Martial Arts, Sport Psychology, Boxing

You don’t need athletic genes or money to be really fit, just willpower and tenacity. My mantra for many years was if you want to be in killer shape, make that decision and don’t let anyone or anything stop you from getting there. In a perfect world, that is true. If you want to be fit, all you need to do is to stick to it. However, as I’ve traveled down the fitness rabbit hole, I’ve come to realize we don’t live in a perfect world - far from it.

 

While it takes drive and willpower to get and stay fit, you may or may not be fortunate enough to have a body that cooperates with that drive. Since turning forty, I’ve come to this realization personally. While my mind is still chock-full of willpower, my body doesn’t performed in the same manner it did for the previous twenty years. Whether or not we have copious amounts of will, at some point we have to face a body that doesn’t cooperate - be it through injury, illness, or aging.

 

coaching disabled clients, disabled clients, lessons from disabled clientsThose who are disabled know this fact all too well and grapple every day with bodies that don’t function optimally. Early in my career, while working for the YMCA, I was fortunate to work with many disabled people. I am proud that I was able to help those people, but in actuality, they helped me much more than I helped them. The lessons I was able to learn and apply to my own life and journey in fitness were as important as any I’ve learned. It’s because of those experiences that I am able to remind myself of how to face my own aging body and physical limitations - with gratitude and with humility.


 

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