Isn’t it funny how we go through life and if everything is copacetic we don’t give a thought to those things that cause hardship like a backache for example. For a number of the daily nuisances that I encounter there are workable solutions, for some it’s only a matter of self-advocating by speaking up. For others it’s a matter of creative thinking to develop an answer to an unasked question.
It gives me great pleasure to introduce you to Mel Scott who earlier this year launched a new business, Blind Alive LLC to address the fitness needs of people who are blind or vision impaired. I met Mel earlier in the year and more recently when I contacted her for permission to feature her, she told me about BlindAlive, eyes-free fitness.
I would come across the commercials on TV or I would hear sighted friends talking about how great they felt after working out using an exercise video. When I would hear these commercials, I would prepare my memory to capture the 1-800 number, and run fast as I could to the phone before I forgot it. Sometimes the number was just on the screen and I didn’t even have the opportunity to reach out even if I had wanted to. ~Mel Scott
Among the many misconceptions about blind and vision impaired people is that we either cannot or will not exercise. Some of us prefer not to go to a public gym simply because most of the equipment is not accessible. For many of us who would like to use exercise videos/CDs/DVDs it is challenging when the instructors do not describe what they are doing. Mel understood this situation from personal experience which prompted her to develop BlindAlive.
The entire team at BlindAlive is motivated by a driving passion to deliver eyes-free fitness products to everyone who wants to be healthy and strong. At BlindAlive, we create more choices for more people. ~Mel Scott
Mel, a true force to be reckoned with, was diagnosed with breast cancer 6 years ago. In her podcast she talks about the day she received the devastating news and how, in preparation for her upcoming surgery, every day for 5 weeks she did yoga, sit-ups and Pilates. She understood the critical need to strengthen her body for post-operation recovery after a double mastectomy and breast implants.
Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP) the cause of Mel’s loss of vision, was the diagnosis she received at age 7. RP refers to a group of inherited diseases mainly caused by mutated genes which leads to retinal degeneration. In Mel’s case she and her sister’s RP was caused by a recessive gene because neither of their parents nor their 4 other siblings were affected by this eye disease.
I can’t tell you how happy I was when Mel told me about her business, I mean there’s this whole demographic of blind people who can and do achieve many of the same things fully sighted people accomplish. It’s just a matter of the how we perform any given task.
I thought you know what? It’s time to stop b*tching about excercise videos not being accessible and I just got this flood of energy in my body that said do it!! Go do it yourself take it into your own hands and create products that blind people, and people with low vision and sighted people can do this too… ~Mel Scott
When you visit BlindAlive be sure to check out Mel’s podcasts and the Audio Encyclopedia where Mel gives step by step warm-up instructions. Oh, and before I forget Mel asked me to share with you a promo code for a discount on her first Sculpting with Weights Level One Fitness Workout. The code is “acb14” and it will be good through August.
Mel and her team work hard to ensure her site and products are accessible. She also encourages your feedback to help her provide nothing but the best products and services.
Mel, thank you again, for allowing me the pleasure of writing about you, and BlindAlive. As you say and it’s so true, “being healthy is a choice.”
To follow Mel on Facebook and Twitter the links to both are below this post.