21 Apr 2023

Inclusive sports area at the REHAB

«In the meantime, we also have pedestrians who sign up to join wheelchair users at the sports club.» MTV Stuttgart is very committed to inclusion in sports.

Inclusive children's and youth sport also has a very important function in a very traditional club. Mandy Pierer now works full-time at the MTV Wheelers in Stuttgart as the inclusion manager of the 180-year-old "men's gymnastics club". "The name from the old days is deceptive. We now have more women, who are also very active in sport, among our 8,500 members. For example, Anja Wicker, the successful female biathlete, comes from the MTV."

She and her husband have been coaching the Wheelers for over nine years, initially as volunteers, and knows how important sport is for people with severe disabilities. There is no substitute for participation and it builds a positive self-image, especially in children. Her 15-year-old son is very successful on his handbike, but her two daughters also participate as walkers. As soon as a child gets their first wheelchair, they can learn how to handle the wheelchair correctly with the wheelchair minis, and from the age of six up to young adulthood, it is the wheelchair kids who take part in many sports.

You can see a portrait photo of Mandy Pierer standing at a table with the words MTV Stuttgart on it. Ms. Pierer is wearing a striped top, has brown hair and is smiling at the camera.
As inclusion manager, Mandy Pierer is committed to the participation of people with disabilities at MTV Stuttgart. She is also involved in various hands-on activities at REHAB. (Image: Lichtgut Ferdinando Iannone)

Wheelsoccer, for example, is totally cool and extremely inclusive: pedestrian children in mechanical wheelchairs can play in a team with kids in electric wheelchairs, some of whom are severely affected. The large Pezziball is driven around the whole hall in a very sporty way. "At the end, everyone is sweaty and happy because there are rules for the different situations that make it easy for everyone to take part. Fortunately, society's view of inclusion is slowly changing, and in addition to siblings and friends of young people with disabilities, there are also more and more "pedestrian children" who are curious to get a taste of it and stay in the sports groups," summarizes Mandy Pierer.

Inclusive sports games are on the programme every day of the fair. Information on many sports and clubs will be available at individual stands and at the inclusive sports facility in the dm-arena. Other highlights of the REHAB sports programme include Adaptive self-defense for all, presented by Esther Weber, Olympic champion in wheelchair fencing and member of the newly founded Frankfurt Inclusive Sports Club.

The Badischer Behinderten- und Rehabilitationssportverband e.V. and the Hessischer Behinderten- und Rehabilitations-Sportverband e.V. will be there with field hockey in wheelchairs and biathlon in wheelchairs, and power field hockey with electric wheelchairs is in preparation.

Further information can be found in the trade fair programme.

Wheelsoccer: https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=340943381370271

MTV Stuttgart: https://www.mtv-stuttgart.de/verein/

Frankfurt Inclusive Sports Club: https://fisev.de

The photo shows several people in wheelchairs playing with a ball. The goal at which they are aiming can be seen in the background.
A wide variety of sports will be shown at the REHAB inclusive sports facility, with hands-on activities to try out.