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  1. #1
    Senior Member timthorn's Avatar
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    Riding with the Blind

    Well, my vision finally reached the point where independent riding is not practical, and this spurred me to research tandem riding. Is there anyone that tandem's with a blind rider? How satisfying does the blind guy feel?

  2. #2
    Senior Member zonatandem's Avatar
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    Through our 36+ years of tandeming, have had several blind stokers and other less-abled folks on our tandem.
    As for the visually impaired, they were having a great time . . .
    So do it!!!
    Rudy and Kay/zonatandem

  3. #3
    Legs; OK! Lungs; not! bobthib's Avatar
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    This thread gives me a idea. Some one I'm sure has probably done it, but organizing some sort of tandem rides for blind/visually impaired in the greater Ft Lauderdale area sounds like a great way to give back. If anyone has experience with this sort of thing, some ideas on where and how to start would be good.

    I would also like to consider a similar concept for handicap children. I know my grandson loves riding "Jazz" (the name he gave my tandem) I built a simple foot rest since he cant yet reach the pedals. But the bike is an XL/SM frame and I put a XL stoker seat post, quick release clamp, and adjustable stem. It can really adapt to a wide range of stokers.

    Children are much lighter. Less work for me.
    BT
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    "Oh, to be 60 again!"

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  4. #4
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    Fort Lauderdale Blind Tandem Riding

    You might well be in luck, as Steve at the Trike Shoppe in Ft. Lauderdale is involved with a tandem event on Wds this week, which is connected with Lighthouse, Breward. I'm sure Steve will be very helpful in getting you to participate in local activities.

    Some details of the tandem ride and raffle in aid of Lighthouse, please visit

    http://www.trikeshoppe.com/Trike-Shoppe-Raffle.html

    Best of luck with it.

    Vince.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
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    Check out this website-- http://bicyclingblind.org/

  6. #6
    Senior Member timthorn's Avatar
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    Thanks for the responses. Time to do some research on setups and prices.

  7. #7
    Senior Member 3bluebikes's Avatar
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    We belong to The Chicago Area Tandem Society. One Saturday of every month, April through October, we hold a Blind Stoker ride with the help of various park and recreation organizations in the Chicagoland area which work with people with disabilities. The rides are usually 10 to 15 miles one way to a local fesival for lunch and conversation before the return ride. As a captain, I find it very gratifying. The blind stokers who have riden behind me have all told us they enjoyed the day.

  8. #8
    Senior Member rdtompki's Avatar
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    The Veterans Administration hospital in Palo Alto, CA organizes stoker rides for blind veterans. I'm going to a talk next week given by the organizer; I'd like volunteer to take someone out once a months or so. The San Diego area seems to have a very well organized activity to provide stoker opportunities for the blind
    Rick T
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    daVinci Joint Venture

  9. #9
    Hey let's ride. pathdoc's Avatar
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    If any blind stokers are in the DFW area I'd be willing to have you out for a few rides.

  10. #10
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    Bigger cities with centers for the visually impaired might be able to start up tandem cycling clubs, like this one from my town:

    http://www.torontotrailblazers.org/

    They've got a fleet of about 12 tandems, and a stable of volunteer (sighted) captains. I volunteered with them for several years. It's good fun for everyone.

  11. #11
    Tandem Vincitur Ritterview's Avatar
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    The topic of vision impared stokers will come up at the upcoming NAHBS:

    Thursday, 24 February 2011

    Hope on 2 wheels- NAHBS

    When Don Walker heard the story of cycling Greg Impellizeri, who lost his sight as the unexpected consequence of a medical procedure, he decided he had to help. "I got in touch with him and suggested I build him a tandem, so at least he can keep riding, even if he can no longer see," said Don. A few days later Walker heard from Brooke, Greg's girlfriend. "Bikes were Greg's world, and that world crumbled. You are giving him that world back... trust me, this is MAJOR. You are making more of a difference in Greg's life than you realize." she wrote. The tandem itself will be on display at NAHBS, a fillet brazed frame with clearcoat, and definitely is worth a look.

    More pics here.

  12. #12
    Senior Member CHAS's Avatar
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    Mountain bike racing in NZ http://blindcrazy.blogspot.com/ blind and "crazy as a box of badgers"
    Last edited by CHAS; 02-26-11 at 10:10 AM.
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  13. #13
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    There was an article in Bicycling! around '76 or '77 about the Kinbockers bile club. They had several Gitane tandem bicycles for impared vision riders. I think they were in San Francisco. Has anyone heard of them?

  14. #14
    Legs; OK! Lungs; not! bobthib's Avatar
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    Well, it's not quite the same, but my 71 y/o buddy had his 2nd crash in a year about 7 weeks ago. He still has some vertigo and can't ride. Solo at least.

    Tomorrow we have the metric Tour de Broward to benefit the Joe Dimaggio children's hospital. I spoke with him the other day and he said he was registered but couldn't ride because if his vertigo. I told him to consider riding with me.

    Today we set him up in the stoker position and we did a little 4 mi test spin. It went very well and he was very appriciative. I doubt if we will set any land speed records, and we may not even keep up with the rest of the club. But I think we'll have a good time.
    BT
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  15. #15
    Legs; OK! Lungs; not! bobthib's Avatar
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    Vic, thanks for the hook up with Steve. We have emailed waiting for his reply.

    Swamp, thanks for the link. I just registered. Still need to find or start a tandem club in the area.
    BT
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    "Oh, to be 60 again!"

    http://tickers.TickerFactory.com/ezt...c/exercise.png

  16. #16
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    Glad to see this thread. I just signed up at http://bicyclingblind.org/ but it looks like in my area there are more captains and not enough stokers. So I googled to find services for the vision impaired in my area and sent an email to each of their 'contact us' email addresses mentioning I had signed up and giving them the URL. Hopefully something will come from it and more blind and vision impaired people will sign up to ride there.

  17. #17
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    My husband and I bought our tandem last spring, when his vision loss had progressed to the point that riding a single was a safety issue. We get many looks, comments, and thumbs up when we head out on a ride. I have to give him a TON of credit for letting me be his captain. It takes a lot of trust to be a stoker, especially with limited vision. We're having a great time, rode in our Bike to the Bay for the MS Society in October. Seventy-five miles in a little over 5 hours! It's very much worth giving it a try! Go for it!

  18. #18
    Senior Member timthorn's Avatar
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    Developing trust places a fairly large hurdle for one to overcome. That is why I am struggling to sign up as a stoker.

    I will take this time to mention the VA's Blind Rehab. There are 10 main rehab locations, and many many more Visual Impairment Speciality Teams at other VA centers. So if you are looking for a stoker, you could try investigating them as a possibility..

    However, my wife agreed to purchasing a tandem after venturing out on a test ride we took. Prior to that ride, our only experience occurred on on Mackinaw Island's rentals, which left much to be desired. We now picture ourselves riding around on a tandem with our daughter trailing behind in the buggy.

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