Club for visually impaired skateboarders takes off in Calgary
CALGARY -- The wheels are turning on a new project that allows those experiencing vision loss to skateboard.
A Calgary group led by 15-year-old Curtis Ruttle is offering a chance for those with visual impairment to get on a board and drop-in.
Alt Route is the name of Ruttle’s project. It was launched after the teen, who only has about 10 per cent of his vision, took up the sport.
“Being able to do something like this is amazing,” Ruttle said. “It has been so great to do and I think it builds confidence.”
The project relies on visual indicators to show skateboarders where they should go.
Fluorescent tape and LED lights throughout the skatepark guide participants in the right direction.
Five skateboarders, all experiencing different levels of vision loss, took off on their boards Saturday. Ruttle’s sister, Cassandra, was one of the teenagers taking part at Calgary’s Compound Skatepark.
“It means a lot to me that I know I can go to a skatepark that I’m comfortable with and that I know I can actually see the stuff and not have to be hesitant,” Cassandra told CTV News.
Ruttle’s father James said seeing his children skateboard is incredible.
“There’s always that understanding that people with disabilities can’t do something,” James said. “This just proves that you can. The sky’s the limit.”