The effects of muscular dystrophy include weakened muscles and damage to vital organs. People living with this condition are unable to access most sports, which would help them develop their physical health, team spirit, determination and drive to achieve their goals.
That is why the Muscular Dystrophy Association promotes boccia, a game similar to bocce. Boccia is played indoor with leather balls and by people with severe disabilities.
More than ten years ago, association members were introduced to the game as a recreational sport. Boccia is an indoor game that requires players to focus and strategize their movements in order to win. Players who are unable to throw their boccia balls can use a ramp with help from an assistant. The assistant acts as the player’s arms and legs, following their instructions about the angle of the boccia ramp and placement of the balls.
In 2013, the association moved into larger premises and was able to hold regular weekly practice sessions. This led to a growing number of members (between 11 and 35 years old). Now, many have become skilled enough to compete in local tournaments. It is also heartwarming to see the development of a few of these athletes who are being groomed to represent Singapore at international competitions.
Boccia gives people with muscular dystrophy the chance to show their determination and improve their seated position and posture.
The Air Liquide Foundation contributed to the expansion of the project by purchasing two boccia ramps and six sets of boccia ball kits.