Adapted Physical Activity
05/11/2012 15:00

Earlier this week approximately 300 delegates from 33 countries were warmly welcomed to Kerry, Ireland where they attended the 2012 European Congress of Adapted Physical Activity (EUCAPA).  Attention at the conference was focused on applied research, either in process or outcome, which facilitates active participation of persons with a disability.  The conference also offered participants opportunities through presentations and workshops, to learn from projects and programmes that improve service delivery in adapted physical activity.  


EUCAPA 2012 was reported to be “very well organised” and “include an excellent variety of speakers and presenters” and “an especially positive and inclusive conference” and “definitely worth going to” according to students completing the Erasmus Mundus Master in Adapted Physical Activity (EMMAPA) at Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium. 


Hosted this year by the Institute of Technology Tralee in conjunction with the CARA National Adapted Physical Activity centre and the Irish Sports Council, EUCAPA 2012 encompassed the four key themes including Adapted Physical Activity, Adapted Physical Education, Disability Sport, and Rehabilitation. 


Under the Adapted Physical Activity theme ADAPT IT was a practical workshop focusing on low-cost adapted sports equipment, and how to build it, delivered by EMMAPA students Sean Healy and Jennifer Wong.  Through their session the pair engaged a group of about 35 participants (made up teachers, coaches, residential care centre personnel and students) as they demonstrated a range of self-engineered adaptive sports equipment.  The variety of practical and novel ideas provided new low cost equipment solutions for the workshop participants.  Miss Wong commented, “we were really pleased with how well our first attempt at this type of workshop was received, it certainly stimulated a lot of creativity!”   As a newly formed organisation, Adapt It plans to use these equipment ideas to help sports practioners overcome the equipment barrier that keeps so many individuals with disabilities from participating in sport. 


Spanning all themes of EUCAPA 2012, and likely of great interest to those most concerned with opportunities for young people with disabilities to enjoy, participate and perform in Physical Education and sport, was a presentation delivered by independent advisor on inclusive physical activity and disability sport, Mr Ken Black.  Mr Black shared information about both, TOP Sportsability, an inclusive activities resource with a UK context, and The Inclusion Club, a website linking an international community of like-minded people that want to see more persons with a disability getting active and participating in sport. 


In closing the conference an Expert Discussion Panel urged delegates to continue building partnership and collaborations, especially those which reach outside the profession with for example Fitness and Health Club professionals, Physiotherapists and Occupational Therapists. 


For further information about ADAPT IT workshops contact either Sean Healy at or Jennifer Wong at


Or to learn more about the history and objectives of EUCAPA visit and navigate to the General Information tab