Sports & fitness
Contact your local authority for activities in your area. It may also have a scheme giving disabled people concessionary rates for local pools, leisure centres and sports facilities. Often this depends on getting Disability Living Allowance (DLA), but you can also ask your GP to refer you on medical grounds.
General Sports Bodies
Parasport www.parasport.org.uk Tel: 020 7211 5222 Email: email@example.com has contact details for all sport bodies in the UK, both national and local, which provide opportunities for people with disabilities.
English Federation of Disability Sport www.efds.co.uk Tel: 0161 247 5294 Email:
The EFDS is the national federation for all those organisations which represent disabled people in sport in England. It has a regional manager in each of the ten regions of England who co-ordinates sports provision for people with a disability in that region.
Cerebral Palsy Sport (CP Sport) www.cpsport.org Tel: 0115 925 7027,
This organisation covers England and Wales and arranges national and regional events in various sports including athletics, boccia, swimming, tennis and many others. In addition, they can help you find sports groups in your local area that will cater for your needs.
Tel: 020 8959 0089 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Sportability is a charity dedicated to people with disabilities. They arrange year-round activities including archery, canoeing, falconry, fishing etc. They cater for people over the age of 12 and only cover England at present, being particularly active in the Midlands.
Special Olympics Great Britain (SOGB) www.sogb.org.uk Tel: 020 7247
This organisation is a provider of sporting opportunities for people with a learning disability. Their five most popular sports are athletics, swimming, football, gymnastics and bowls, amongst a variety of other activities including winter sports. They have local branches throughout England, Scotland and Wales and accept people of any ability from age 8 upwards. Contact them for more information on activities and clubs in your local area.
International Dance Teachers' Association www.idta.co.uk Tel: 01273 685 652
For all types of dance. Click on 'Where Can I Learn to Dance?' or phone for a list of dance schools.
Disability Football: www.disabilityfootball.co.uk is a directory of disability football clubs in England, Scotland and Wales.
Gymnastics & exercise programmes
Different Strokes www.differentstrokes.co.uk, with branches around the UK, is run by younger stroke survivors for younger stroke survivors, for active self help and mutual support. Their exercise classes will welcome all HemiHelp members.
Riding for the Disabled Association
(RDA) https://www.rda.org.uk/ Tel:
0845 658 1082
Email: email@example.com. This website provides a list of contact details by region (including Northern Ireland) with a list of links and telephone numbers to some of the county or local groups.
Handy Tips: Using a toggle on the rein of the affected arm to hold onto can help. The toggle is just a piece of smooth wood, much like a coat toggle, with a slit in it for the rein. This can be kept in place with the small rubber rings (for example those used with martingales).
www.pilatesfoundation.com This is the governing body for Pilates in the UK. They don't run any classes for disabled people as such, and suggest entering your postcode in the 'Class Finder' section of the website and contacting your local teacher or centre.
British Swimming/Amateur Swimming Association
Tel: 01625 440 434 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
British Swimming/ASA is the English national governing body for swimming, with 1,600 affiliated swimming clubs which teach swimming and stroke improvement. To find local contact details for each region on the website, Links ► Swimming>County Associations.
SASA (Scotland) https://www.scottishswimming.com/compete/para-swimming/about.aspx Tel: 01786 466 520, Email: email@example.com
Swimming Wales http://www.welshparaswimming.co.uk/
N Ireland contact DSNI (see above)
Halliwick Association of Swimming Therapy www.halliwick.org.uk Email: firstname.lastname@example.org This is a national association with local affiliated swimming clubs and groups throughout the UK providing a specialised one-to-one programme to teach disabled people swimming and water skills.
Handy Tips: Most local pools offer either one-to-one swimming lessons or small group lessons. Also look out for the Swim 21 logo as this means the pool caters for disabled swimmers.
NB You need to declare your hemiplegia when buying insurance. HemiHelp's leaflet on holidays & travel lists companies that will insure you.
Disability Snowsport UK www.disabilitysnowsport.org.uk
Tel: 01479 861272
This organisation caters for people of any age or ability who wish to practice snow sports, including skiing and snowboarding. For local groups contact them by phone or email them via the website.
The Ski 2 Freedom Foundation www.ski2freedom.com Tel: 0844 855
The Ski 2 Freedom Foundation is non-profit making organisation launched to help people with disabilities enjoy access to all winter sports. You can download The Ski 2 Freedom Guide to Snowsport and Mountain Activities for Disability and Special Needs from their site.
The Tennis Foundation www.tennisfoundation.org.uk
Tel: 0845 872 0522
This is a charity that works in association with the Lawn Tennis Association, helping to develop the game. They provide information on various disability tennis programmes and can help you to find a club in your area.
British Disabled Water Ski Association (BDWSA)
Tel: 01784 483 664 Email: email@example.com
Click on Regions for for a list of local contact details (Scotland and England only).
Heron Lake also has a residential block for longer stays at the lake.
Royal Yachting Association (RYA) Sailability www.rya.org.uk/sailability
Tel: 0845 345 0403
Sailability is a volunteer based organisation (part of a world-wide network) which covers England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Click on 'Where's my Nearest?' to find details of clubs in your area.
The British Wheel of Yoga is the national governing body - go to http://www.bwy.org.uk/ and enter your postcode to find local teachers. There are various forms of yoga taught in the UK, some more suitable for people with hemiplegia than others. Different classes will have a different emphasis - some being more physical, some focusing more on relaxation, breath work and meditation. They suggest speaking to a teacher about their approach before you sign up for a class.
Iyengar Yoga www.iyengaryoga.org.uk is one of the most widely taught forms of yoga in the UK. They suggest you tick the 'Remedial' box when you search for a local teacher on their site, and if your hemiplegia is more severe restrict your search to teachers at the Senior Intermediate level.