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Monday, April 2, 2012

Schrader rolls in wheelchair curling

Larry seen right

Larry Schrader started wheelchair curling simply because he was looking for a winter activity - only to end this season as a Canadian champion.

Schrader played lead on Darwin Bender's Callie team that also includes third Gil Dash and second Marie Wright and co-coaches Bob Capp and Lorraine Arguin. Bender's squad captured Saskatchewan's first national wheelchair championship in Thunder Bay, Ont., by beating Alberta's Bruno Yizek 7-6 in the final on March 25.

Schrader was a veteran baseball umpire in Regina until losing the lower portion of his right leg in August of 2009. Schrader, who is a Type 2 diabetic, developed a blister on his right foot while on vacation in Las Vegas. By the time he had returned to Regina, infection had already set in. He developed blood poisoning and doctors were forced to amputate his right leg approximately six inches below the knee.

"I can do everything I did before, only a little slower,'' Schrader said.

Schrader was taking part in his rehabilitation at the Wascana Rehabilitation Centre when he noticed an announcement about tryouts for wheelchair curling.

"I had bowled three times a week before I lost my leg and it just didn't work after that,'' Schrader said. "I needed something to do for the winter. I tried wheelchair curling and the people were really nice. They had good coaches and we curled every Monday night in the able-bodied league. I just kept doing that.''

Schrader, who is a guard at the Regina Correctional Centre, said being active in golf and now curling has helped him deal with being an amputee.

"Winning the nationals has allowed me to meet some interesting people and they all have positive things to say,'' Schrader said. "It's just a whole lot of fun.''

Schrader has a prosthesis, which allows him to walk. Wheelchair curling is open to amputees and those who need to be in a wheelchair, but the rules stipulate that each participant must curl in a wheelchair. That creates an interesting contrast when Schrader walks into a curling club pushing his wheelchair.

"A lot of people look at me and they think it's something that I can walk and I can get out of my chair,'' said the 57-year-old Schrader. "That makes me feel bad for them. When I got to the Wascana to see my doctor and I look at the people in there - I realize that I'm so much luckier than they are.''
Bender, 48, has been in a wheelchair since being injured in a motor-vehicle accident 30 years ago.

He said one of the misconceptions about wheelchair curling is that participants have to be wheelchair-bound.

"You have to deliver the rocks from a wheelchair,'' Bender said. "You can't have any appendages on the ice while doing that and that means anyone with a disability can play. There are people with knee and hip replacements, who can't ablebody curl, but can play the game of wheelchair curling.''
There isn't any sweeping in wheelchair curling. All of the players use a stick, but their deliveries are limited by the fact they are in a seated position. Curlers depend on timing the running of the stone between the hoglines to determine how hard to deliver it.

"Our delivery is basically a foot or whatever the extension of your arm is,'' Bender said.
Schrader and Bender were both excited about winning a national championship. They hope their accomplishment will raise the profile of wheelchair curling.

The championship has also led to other opportunities. Schrader said the team has been invited to a tryout camp later this year in Richmond, B.C., to determine the Canadian wheelchair curling team.
"Who knows? Maybe one of us could be picked to be on that team,'' Schrader said.

mmccormick @leaderpost.com

Read more: http://www.leaderpost.com/Schrader+rolls+wheelchair+curling/6395467/story.html#ixzz1qspYNJsF


Anonymous said...

Be careful, Larry,

You will be run out of town by the anonymous police for not staying in your chair..

Anonymous said...

Yes, Larry,

You certainly are a "cheater" on this site....


Anonymous said...

Yes, Larry,

The vultures on this site will hang you if you don't stay in your chair....

But great win, Big Guy!

Anonymous said...

Great article.

Great win.

Don't think you are a cheater!

Anonymous said...


We don't hear anyone attacking Larry....remember, he JUST MAY take one of the opportunities away from you SCI players.

AND WE KNOW the anonymous police HATE that.

Anonymous said...

Actually, you are correct.

The silence about Larry playing is astounding.

Congratulations on the big win, Saskatchewan!

Anonymous said...

YES congratulations to the ENTIRE TEAM....not just LARRY!! Quite a biased article...due to the fact Larry is friends of the reporter perhaps?

Anonymous said...

Congratulations to the ENTIRE TEAM....not just Larry...could the reporter being a friend of Larrys have anything to do with it being entirely about LARRY??

Anonymous said...

Absolutely, it was a GREAT team win, especially with a "cheater" like Larry..........

Just kidding....GREAT WIN.....now in modern times, B.C., Manitoba, and now Saskatchewan have all won....
looks like we have some balancing of the talent at last.

And Larry, you DESERVE to be there, and you DESERVE to win, even if you CAN get out of your chair.

Anonymous said...

According to international qualifications, the guy from Sask. (Larry) is a cheater. He would never meet the requirements for clasification under the current rules. To see him physically walk away with the trophy was insulting to some. Sask. joins other teams who walked away with a trophy.

Anonymous said...

But is that so bad? He has an obvious disability in "gait". He is a positive to the Program.

Hopefully the International program can catch up.

There are MANY amputees participating in Europe, and good for them.

WE need INCLUSION, not EXCLUSION of an obvious disability.

Anonymous said...

There is no major advantage to anyone with lower limb issues.

Your butt hits the chair, and you could be Kevin Martin, as far as throwing ability.

I understand that full SCI deal with balance issues, but Sonja/Eric's post seems to minimize the disadvantage.

Let's move on...

Anonymous said...

Whoever posted the above comment clearly does not have a spinal cord injury. What a ridiculous, uneducated and insensitive statement to make. No one should be able to walk away with a trophy in wheelchair curling. Perhaps at some point there will be consideration to a classification system similar to what they use in wheelchair basketball. This would ensure an appropriate balance on the team, no pun intended.

Anonymous said...

I totally agree with the last poster. Amputees have a big advantage. There are people with spinal cord injuries who have lost strength and etc. There are people with MS, CP, MD and other types of brain injury/illness that limit a person in many ways (strength and coordination), unlike an amputee who has a healthy system. That is why I think some people are offended when a guy like the Sask. guy gets up and walks to receive the trophy. I am not minimizing the impact of being an amputee, I just believe there is a difference and it needs to be addressed in how we classify and who qualifies. I don't know much about wheelchair basketball, but that seems like an interesting option.

Anonymous said...

These posters are correct. BUT while a points system is developed, we lose these guys in the interval. let's get the numbers up, THEN assess a numeric system