Enfield & Haringey are very proud of their Disability Section – set up in 1990. While some other clubs now cater for certain athletes with disabilities, EHAC are still unique in having a fully-fledged section of the club catering specifically for athletes with disabilities and special needs. Athletes of any ability or disability are welcome, and we have vast experience from grass roots right up to international level.
The club is also extremely lucky in being able to say that they have the same coaches still running the group today, after setting it up over 20 years ago. We enjoyed much success in the early years with several international athletes, and as a team we were National Champions in the Learning Disability Category in 1994. We were the first club in the country with a Disability Section and at a time when there were virtually no people with disabilities involved with Athletics clubs. As such, the club pioneered the participation that is now common up and down the country.
We cater for all disability groups at all levels from beginners up to international standard. Over the years we have coached athletes from the following groups and more: Wheelchair, Deaf, Visually impaired, learning difficulties, Dwarfs, Amputees, Cerebral Palsy and people who have had transplants. The youngest we take is 10 years old, and there is no upper age limit. We train at Lee Valley Athletics Centre on club nights Tuesdays and Thursdays commencing at 6.30pm. When possible, it is sometimes possible to cater for athletes at our other Training Centre at New River White Hart Lane Wood Green N22.
As well as regular coaching we provide support and advice for all Athletes, and help them find the right competition for their level whether that be disability competition, mainstream club events or both. All athletes are encouraged to become members of the club, which enables them to be selected for teams when they are up to a suitable standard.
All athletes are fully integrated into the club, and treated the same as any other club athlete. According to their chosen events and level, they will train with mainstream athletes, as well as integrating with other athletes across all disability groups. Several mainstream athletes train regularly alongside the disability athletes, and we find the interaction is beneficial to all taking part.
Several of our athletes have often competed in mainstream leagues; again this is beneficial to everyone concerned and also gives our athletes another goal to aim for.