New fitness app offers accessible workouts for people of all abilities
By Katie Dupere
A new app is making fitness more accessible and inclusive — and it's all for a worthy cause.
The video-based app, called CPF Challenge, allows people with a diverse range of motor abilities to participate in specialized workouts. The app is part of a dedicated fundraiser challenge created by the Cerebral Palsy Foundation, a nonprofit supporting people with cerebral palsy through research and innovation.
The goal of the challenge is to "raise your pulse, raise awareness of cerebral palsy and raise dollars for the Cerebral Palsy Foundation."
More than 17 million people in the world live with cerebral palsy, according to the nonprofit. But the majority of fitness-related apps on the market are developed without limited mobility conditions like cerebral palsy in mind. As The Mighty reports, even fewer apps offer exercises that people with and without disabilities can do together, making the CPF Challenge app particularly noteworthy.
Starting March 25, which is Cerebral Palsy Awareness Day, those who sign up for the challenge are tasked with using the app to complete one seven-minute workout every day for 21 days straight. At the end of the challenge, all workouts within the app will be unlocked for participants to revisit.
"We wanted something that would not only raise your heart rate but also awareness of CP — and dollars," Richard Ellenson, CEO of Cerebral Palsy Foundation, told The Mighty. "We are excited to pave the way for increased inclusion for those with different ability levels, and we're excited about how this app will challenge the way people think about disabilities — which is, in fact, what our foundation works at on a daily basis."
On the app, Nike master trainer Isabelle Derond demonstrates each exercise for those without limited mobility. People with cerebral palsy demonstrate adapted versions of the exercise to accommodate varying abilities. Participants who don't have the physical ability to exercise can invite friends to complete the challenge on their behalf through the app.
Through fundraising profiles, users can set goals for the 21-day challenge and encourage people to pledge donations through their social media accounts.
UPDATE: March 21, 2017, 1:26 p.m. EDT At the time of writing, the CFP Challenge app was available for a $25 download fee. The Cerebral Palsy Foundation has since removed the fee, making the app available at no cost. This article has been updated to reflect this price change. ■