Golf clinic helps patients with disabilities recover in Northeast Philadelphia

NORTHEAST PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- A lot can happen with the swing of a golf club.

Louis Namm, of First Swing said, "The thing that keeps making me come back is that every time I get a new patient to work with, and they hit the golf ball their eyes light up."

Thursday morning about a dozen patients with amputations or traumatic brain injuries filled up their baskets and teed up for the annual MossRehab Adaptive Golf Clinic.
It's a partnership with the National Adaptive Golf Association.

Once they learn how to hit a golf ball, the idea is if they can do this they can do other things.

Just like experience among the participants can vary, so do their stories and journeys.

"I'm a veteran, lost both legs in Vietnam in 1969," said Namm.

Some have lived most of their lives without a limb.

Edwin Gradel of Burholme said, "I lost my arm when I was 8-years-old because of cancer.

Others are still adapting to a new normal. Like Marvin Crawford of South Philadelphia, who lost his leg in 2014.

He said, "Ii had an accident on the job. I was crushed by a forklift. So I had trauma."

To him this is much more than just a game.

"It makes my life better and I can be around people that's going through the things I'm going through," said Crawford.

It's also a fun way for people with disabilities to improve muscle control, coordination and flexibility.

Anne Wieland of MossRehab said, "Someone with an amputation has an awful risk of becoming sedentary and that's not what we want for people we want them to get out."

Yes, a lot can happen with the swing of a golf club.

For these players, it opens up the door to a new world of possibilities.

A lot of people with disabilities are participating in regular sports track and field basketball hockey rugby. These are sports that you would've never thought somebody with a disability would be able to play but they're out they're out there doing it.

MossRehab holds events like this throughout the year if you'd like more information on how to participate or donate, you can visit the their website.

Send a breaking news alert
Report a correction or typo
Learn more about the 6abc apps
Copyright © 2020 WPVI-TV. All Rights Reserved.