World T.E.A.M. Sports 2017 Annual Review 2017 World T.E.A.M. Annual Review - Page 10

ABOVE: Athletes paddle kayaks at the Coastal Team Challenge. RIGHT TOP: Coastal Team Challenge athletes come to shore. RIGHT MIDDLE: Teams paddle along the southern Long Island coast. RIGHT BOTTOM: Hobie kayaks wait for athletes to begin the Challenge. 8 IT CAN BE SURPRISINGLY lonely paddling tiny two-person sea kayaks along the Atlantic Ocean coast. Teams of developmentally- disabled and able-bodied athletes keep close together, pushing away the vastness and uncertainty of the open sea. Using hand-held paddles and foot pedals to propel their 12- foot Hobie kayaks along the coastal route, athletes cover 16 nautical miles in two days. That’s nearly 18.5 miles on land. In the August 2017 Coastal Team Challenge, ten teams found a rhythm in their paddling and pedaling. Each team worked to maintain a constant speed while steering their crafts against seaward winds. Passing wakes from boats leaving or headed toward busy New York harbor added to the challenge of following the southern Long Island coast from East Moriches. Each kayak included an adaptive athlete carefully selected by Challenge partner Independent Group Home Living Program, a New York non-profit that provides programs, services and support for individuals with intellectual disabilities. A volunteer able- bodied coach accompanied the WORLD T.E.A.M. SPORTS ANNUAL REVIEW 2017