To provide statewide leadership in the planning, promotion, education, and organization of sports and recreation opportunities for Iowans with physical disabilities
Adaptive Sports Iowa was officially launched on March 8, 2011, at the Adaptive Sports Iowa Summit. The summit brought together leaders and advocates of individuals with disabilities. Since 2011, Adaptive Sports Iowa began acquiring equipment and providing opportunities for all physical disabilities. Programs offered since its inception have included:
- Beep Baseball
- Power Soccer
- Snow Skiing
- Sled Hockey
- Track & Field
- Wheelchair Basketball
Adaptive Sports Iowa and the Ames Convention and Visitors Bureau have hosted four national events: the 2012 & 2016 National Beep Baseball World Series, 2014 National Junior Disability Championships, and the 2014 National Goalball Championships.
ASI manages and supports the only recognized adaptive RAGBRAI (Register’s Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa) Team. ASI provided ADA lodging and rider support for the seven-day ride across Iowa.
Iowa was the first state in the nation to offer wheelchair events at the State High School Track & Field Championships. Since ASI began in 2011, the number of participants at the state meet has more than doubled due to the equipment loaner program offered by Adaptive Sports Iowa.
Annually, ASI hosts “Adaptive Sports on the Grand Concourse” at the Iowa State Fair. This event provided a platform to promote ASI and allows the opportunity for Iowans to see and try various adaptive sports equipment.
ASI is a program of the Iowa Sports Foundation (ISF) which was founded in 1986 as a 501(c)3 non-profit entity. The Iowa Sports Foundation’s mission is to provide sports, recreation, health, and wellness opportunities for Iowans of all abilities.
In addition to ASI, the ISF is comprised of the Iowa Games, Live Healthy Iowa, Iowa Seniors Games, Des Moines Corporate Games, and the Corridor Corporate Games.
Sean Runyan Memorial Award
Perhaps the most important part of our programs is fostering an attitude of improvement and seeing individuals adopt the values representative of Adaptive Sports Iowa. Every year, we award one athlete the Sean Runyan Memorial Award in honor of Sean’s spirit and contributions to helping others with physical disabilities obtain various opportunities.
Born with spina bifida, Sean began his career at age 12 participating in road races, track, field, and weightlifting events on the state, regional and national levels. Sean set a weightlifting record for his weight class at the 1991 National Junior Disability Championships and placed in each of his events at the 1989 World Championships for Disabled Youth, including winning the 1500m race while setting the world record for his age and ability level.
The Sean Runyan Memorial Award is the highest honor available for Iowa athletes with physical disabilities and serves as a reminder of the capabilities and talent of all those living with physical disabilities.