The Two Disabled Dudes Podcast - Navigating Disability
“To hear from and learn from people who are in the same position…there’s nothing that compares to it.”
A lot of our focus lately has been of Friedreich’s ataxia or FA – the disease that both of us share. And that shouldn’t be a big surprise. FA has had a huge impact on us – it has forced us to see life in a different way and adapt. We have each had friends that have helped shape that impact. One of those friends is Matt Fritsch. Matt has a spinal cord injury and in this episode he joins us for a conversation about how community is essential for all of us no matter what disability we have.
“[Being disabled] is an exclusive club that no one joins on purpose…the parking is a right, not a privilege.”
As promised, here is the second half of our interview with Ron Bartek, president and cofounder of the Friedreich’s Ataxia Research Alliance, or FARA. Please note that the audio quality is less than ideal, but still definitely enjoyable.
Along with Ron’s very impressive resume, we found out that he learned to sleep standing up in Army Ranger School. Ron discovered much of what the body could do when deprived of normal physical needs like sleep and food.
The idea for the Ataxian Athlete Initiative (AAI) adaptive cycling equipment grant program came when Kyle received a grant from the Challenged Athletes Foundation, which he used to purchase a Catrike recumbent trike. That purchase changed his life: while on it, he didn’t feel as physically limited as he felt most times. Realizing how impactful that grant was for him, he created a grant specifically for people with FA, to purchase adaptive cycling equipment, which is often times cost prohibitive for someone with a disability.