Empowering those with disabilities: Liberal Rec and Mosiac join forces, create exercise program

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LIBERAL, Kan. (KSNW) – Community collaboration is getting a group of people up and active, helping empower those with disabilities. 

When COVID-19 hit, important services like exercise at many intellectual and developmental disability care centers became limited. This was true at Liberal’s Mosiac. However, a unique partnership is making it possible for clients to still break a sweat.

Mosaic and the Liberal Recreation Department joined forces, looking to offer an effective and fun exercise class for Mosaic’s clients.

“It doesn’t matter what their disability is. That’s my goal to make sure each one of them is able to do some sort of activity with us,” said Travis Martinez, Adult Sports Supervisor, Liberal Recreation Department.

Travis Martinez researched and put together a low-impact workout program. Students take part in stretches, band exercises, and other mobility training.

The exercises are designed so that everyone can participate, each move having modifications to fit a person’s specific disability.

“It’s something that I see as them progressing their life like one of us does on a daily basis,” said Martinez.

The weekly, 30-minute virtual class is completely free of charge. Allowing 15-25 students to have personal interaction, form relationships, and get the services they need.

“We as an organization want to make sure we take care of people as a whole person. This takes care of their mental health, their physical health, partnerships, being connected, and belonging,” said Janeth Trevizo, Mosaic Executive Director

Those helping with the class say it’s been a welcomed change in the lives of those they serve.

“Having those partnerships are crucial to be able to have them feel connected to everybody as well as build those relationships with other people cause the more relationships you have, the more successful and the more happy you are,” said Trevizo.

These classes have been taking place for about half a year, and in the future, Martinez wants to push the envelope further, hoping to start entire sports leagues for those with disabilities.

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