The Steadward Centre Logo

Achieve! - The Newsletter of 
The Steadward Centre
for Personal & Physical Achievement

Achieve!  November 2003, Volume 2, Number 2

In This Issue

Twenty-fifth Celebrations Bring Out the Sun
Personnel Changes at TSC
Director's Report
Program Update
Program Profile
Indoor Classic
Full Meal Deal
New Faces at TSC
TSC meets ACICR and the future
Plan Ahead for Less Stress
TSC 25th Anniversary Images
SCITCS FES Clinic 10th Anniversary
Awards for Drs Steadward & McPherson
Program Summary
Upcoming Seminars and Camps

Twenty-fifth Celebrations Bring Out the Sun

Ewen Nelson, TSC

On Saturday, August 23rd, volunteers gathered to help set up for The Steadward Centre’s 25th Anniversary Celebrations. The first rainy, cold Saturday of the summer greeted them as balloon sculptures, activity stations, tables, tents, signs and other items were put into place. Guests started to arrive by 11:00 am and were entertained by Dan The One Man Band, wonderful street performers, balloon twisters and face painters. Wendy Brown and her staff at A Catered Affair were kept busy serving coffee, tea and lunch to help keep people warm.

The first of several celebrity media challenges saw competitors trying their hand at pushing a wheelchair through obstacles like a doorway with a threshold step, over a ramp, and in and out of tight corners.

Finally, just as the assembled dignitaries began to speak to the crowd, the sun broke through the clouds and the temperature started to rise. Presiding over the ceremonies were Honourary Chair, Wes Montgomery, CFCW; Organizing Committee Chair, Karen Belmont and Master of Ceremonies, Rick Gingras. Speakers were Dr. Robert Steadward, TSC Founder and CEO; Hon. Anne McLellan, Federal Minister of Health; Hon. Gene Zwozdesky, Provincial Minister of Community Development; Mr. Brian Anderson, Edmonton City Councillor; Ms Phyllis Clark, VP Finance & Administration, University of Alberta; Dr. Gary McPherson, Chairman, TSC Board of Directors. All praised the work of the Centre through the years, and Dr. Steadward’s dedication to people with disabilities. Dr. Steadward made a special presentation to Mrs. Virginia Van Vliet, widow of Dr. Maury Van Vliet, the University’s first Dean of Physical Education & Recreation, and recognized other dignitaries present, including Mr. Drew Hutton, MLA Edmonton Glenora and Mr. Rahim Jaffer, MP Edmonton Strathcona.

Following the speeches, guests enjoyed burgers and hotdogs from A Catered Affair, watched celebrity media challenges, tried their hand at the disability experience stations, and listened to music by the Rhonda Witnell Trio.

The event was truly a memorable one to commemorate The Steadward Centre’s Silver Anniversary. More pictures from the event can be found on page 7 and on the TSC website.

Dr. Steadward speaks to dignitaries and guests at The Steadward Centre’s anniversary celebrations.

Photos Jean Weeks, TSC

Guests trying their hula-hoop skills in the sun.


No doubt people will realize they’re seeing some new faces and a lot less of some other familiar faces around the office. There have been quite a few changes in the last few months.

On September 30, Dr. Steadward retired at CEO of the Centre, after being at the helm for over 25 years. He will now serve as Honourary President of the Centre, concentrating on the Capital Campaign. Dr Steadward will continue to pursue his many other activities and have more time for family and other passions.

Dr. Garry Wheeler has been appointed Executive Director for a period of two years, so will concentrate on the day-to-day operation of the Centre and relinquish his research responsibilities.

Barbara Campbell retired on October 31, after fifteen years as Dr. Steadward’s Executive Assistant. She will be missed by all staff and clients! At her retirement function, Barbara spoke of how her experience has been like ride on a Ferris Wheel, getting better and better but then quickly her feet were back on the ground.

Virginia Marshall has been hired to help with Capital Campaign matters and assist Dr. Steadward. Virginia has hit the ground running, and is quickly learning about the Centre, its staff and clients.

Finally, The Steadward Centre’s “Marathon Woman”, Sandy Jacobson, has taken a leave of absence to follow her dream of competing at the very highest level of athleticism and is hoping to achieve the standards necessary to compete for Canada at next year’s Summer Olympic Games in the women’s marathon. Sandy is training in Brescia, Italy and keeping us updated by e-mail.

Director's Report

Garry D. Wheeler, PhD., C.Psych., Executive Director

It is with pride that I sit and pen this first “Director’s Message” to readers of The Steadward Centre’s Newsletter. To have been given the opportunity to act as the Executive Director of The Steadward Centre during the next two year transitional period is indeed a great honour and also a responsibility of the highest order. These are “big shoes” to fill and taking the reins from Dr. Steadward will be challenging. I thank him for his leadership and legacy. I also relish the challenge.

I officially assumed the position of ED on October 1, 2003 and felt that it was important to establish contact with all the staff by means of a day long retreat which was held on October 14, 2003. The retreat took the form of an interactive facilitated meeting during which staff ‘put their heads together’ and identified future priorities with regards to the day-to-day operations of the Centre. Since then we have been working to implement the suggestions arising from the retreat. Rome was not built in a day – as the saying goes – and so it will take time for a collective implementation of all the suggestions. Nonetheless, our efforts have led to the development of a new staff newsletter – “What’s Up.Doc.” regular weekly meetings with managerial and office staff and monthly meetings will all staff, plans for a new staff ‘uniform;’ and a number of fund raising initiatives, including grant proposals to a number of organizations.

Through a variety of avenues we hope to continue to enhance our programs in scope and quality by securing more resources through a number of fundraising efforts. We have a number of events to look forward to including The International Day of the Disabled, December 3, 2003 during which we will all invite Faculty and friends to join us for “tea” and a tour. In addition, we will celebrate the SCITCS FES Clinic 10th Anniversary on the same day. Of course, we also have The Christmas Bowl, The Casino, The West Edmonton Mall Indoor Classic and Media Challenge, and The Running Room 5 Miler to look forward to. These are a great base upon which to build future exciting Steadward Centre events.

So stay tuned and hang on for the ride. The next two years will be very, very exciting for all of us at The Steadward Centre as we head into the Campaign and the fruits that it will bear. I look forward immensely to working for and with everyone at the Centre.

Program Update

Will Gill, Manager, Fitness & Lifestyle Programs 

The Fall Short Term Programs are drawing to a close at The Steadward Centre. Program staff are busy planning activities for the winter term which runs from January to April 2004.

Six Week Activity Classes

The six week programs are meant to provide a group oriented activity class where individuals can try various types of activities adapted to meet their needs. The six week programs running in the winter term are:

Water In Motion

Our aquasize program has become a mainstay in our short term programming offering a movement and activity opportunity in the water. Water In Motion will run in the first half of the programming term (January - February).

Beginning Kayaking

Ever wanted to try kayaking? Now is your chance. This course will cover the basics and allow individuals to become accustomed to basic kayaking skills at their own pace. Beginning Kayaking will run in the second half of the programming term (March - April).

Yoga for Relaxation

Learn how to use basic Yoga exercises and principles to help you relax. The Yoga glass will run the middle of the term (February -March).

Workshops and Seminars

One day workshops and seminars centre around education and exposure to various health and active living topics. The scope of the workshops and seminars are to provide exposure to various topics and resources for those who want to learn more.

Nutrition for Healthy Living

Come learn the basics of healthy nutrition. Proper nutrition and physical activity are two major components in leading a healthy lifestyle.

Adapted Technology

Ever wondered what’s out there to help you do daily activities easier, faster, or more efficiently? Come find our. Representatives will be on hand from some of the major health and daily living aid suppliers in Edmonton.

Special Events

A chance to be active in a community setting with friends and family are what our special events are all about. Have fun, meet other members of the Centre, and try something new.

The Steadward Centre Indoor Classic at West Edmonton Mall

Come join The Steadward Centre in a walk around West Edmonton Mall. An indoor walk in the winter is a great way to be active with friends and family. This “fun run” will be held on March 7, 2004.

Conditioning Camp

The conditioning camp is designed to offer athletes a foundation of fitness through various skills and drills and will run for 6 weeks with 2 hour sessions. Athletes will have the opportunity to build a cardio base, work on power and test their ball handling and team building skills. Other types of training will include circuit training and sprinting. Athletes will be tested at the beginning of the camp and again at the end using tests such as the 12-minute cooper test and 20 meter timed sprints.

If you are looking to be a competitive athlete and need off-season training or that little extra fine-tuning for your fitness level check it out. For inquiries, speak with Kim at 466-7334.

As the programs are planned more information will be available. Look for our program flyer in early December on our web site at or phone 492-9236. Keep up-to-date on future programs through our newsletter, web site, and program flyers.

Program Profile: Water in Motion!

Will Gill, Manager, Fitness & Lifestyle Programs

The Steadward Centre’s programming is centered around physical activity as part of a well rounded healthy lifestyle. Aside from our long term exercise programs which are based around a weight room setting we offer short term activity programs like six week exercise classes, workshops, seminars, and special events.

One six week activity class which has added variety in options for physical activity is Water in Motion. Due to the buoyancy of water physical activity and the way the body supports itself are quite different than on land.

This change in support can open more options in movement which are made easier when performing them in water and decrease the stress on joints especially in the lower body while being active.

Water in Motion began as a six week exercise program which we offered once per year as an opportunity to try exercise in the water and give people a starting point to seek out other program to participate in on a regular basis. The success of the program has led us to offering it in each of our short term programming terms. Water in Motion is currently offered three times per year for six weeks each time.

If you are looking for a different mode of exercise, try being active in the water. For the next session of water in motion please consult our program guide which is available on line at or call 492-9236 for your copy.

TSC Indoor Classic and Media Challenge

Will Gill, Manager, Fitness & Lifestyle Programs

The Steadward Centre’s annual fun run in West Edmonton Mall is going through a few changes. This fun event is part of our “Get Active” series in which we provide activity options for our members and the community to be active together.

One change regulars will notice is the event has been renamed to the TSC Indoor Classic and Media Challenge. The change in name reflects the addition of the media challenge to promote physical activity and the ability of people with a disability. The media challenge was added last year and was a great success. We are hoping to build on the media challenge this year with a team based challenge pitting one media outlet against others in a wheelchair relay style race.

The other big change to the fun run is the process of registration. This year the Indoor Classic will involve a sponsorship form for those interested in helping us raise money for the event. Participants will have the option of paying a registration fee or collecting pledges and not paying a registration fee.

This year’s TSC Indoor Classic and Media Awareness Challenge will take place on March 7, 2004 at 9:00am in West Edmonton Mall (WEM). The event is a non-competitive 3 or 6 km walk / wheel/ jog around the lower concourse WEM.

Check our website at or call 492-3182 for addition information or to request a registration form.

"Full Meal Deal" Recipe Corner

Jean Weeks, Secretary/Receptionist

We will try to feature recipes of lighter fare in each issue. These are from Weight Watchers cookbook.


2/3 cup sliced carrots
½ cup diced onion
2 garlic cloves minced
3 cups fat-free broth (chicken or beef)
1 ½ cups diced green cabbage
½ cup green beans
1 tbsp. tomato paste
½ teaspoon dried basil
¼ teaspoon dried oregano
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup diced zucchini

1. In large saucepan sprayed with nonstick cook spray, sauté the carrot, onion and garlic over low heat until softened (about 5 minutes).

2. Add broth, cabbage, beans, tomato paste, basil, oregano, and salt. Bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer, covered, about 15 minutes or until beans are tender.

3. Stir in zucchini and heat 3-4 minutes. Serve hot.

(This soup is 42 calories per serving and absolutely delicious)


Top a 6” corn tortilla with ¼ cup each cooked black beans, chopped tomato and shredded low-fat Monterey jack cheese.

Roll up and microwave for 45 seconds.

Serve with fat free sour cream, shredded lettuce, 12 reduced fat tortilla chips and 2 tbsp salsa.

New Faces at TSC

Will Gill, Manager, Fitness & Lifestyle Programs, TSC

The past summer and fall have been extremely busy at The Steadward Centre, aside from increased interest and enrolment from the public we have experienced a changeover in staff as well.

Danielle Reaney is back as the Adapted Fitness Instructor at our U of A location. After a one year absence in Korea teaching English, Dani has moved back to the Edmonton area and her enthusiasm and experience will be a great asset.

Kristy Munroe, a former practicum student, has been hired as our FES Technician. Kristy is a grad of the U of A’s Adapted Physical Activity program and has jumped into the FES program with great enthusiasm.

Practicum Students

The Steadward Centre is providing a variety of practicum placements over the fall term. Malcolm Sniher and Brett Beuerlein are full time practicum students in the U of A’s Adapted program and both are involved with the activities at the U of A centre. Malcolm has been with the Centre on a part time basis over the past couple of years and enters his practicum with more experience than most. Brett attended high school at Austin O’Brien, the location of one of our satellites, and has volunteered with the Centre in the past.

We also have four individuals from the NAIT Personal Fitness Trainer Program in our programs and gaining experience with physical activity and people with a disability. Nicole Blanche and Jill Lindstom are logging hours at the U of A, while Amy Jean Easton and Josh Koehli are providing assistance at our St. Joseph High School satellite.

Take a moment to say hello to our new staff members and students the next time you see them.

The Steadward Centre meets ACICR and the future

TSC Staff

In the world of business, rapid growth and unfettered development would herald a healthy economy. In the world of health, such indicators are troubling. They signify increasing numbers and costs related to injury and impairment that threaten to erode the independence that we value so highly and strive to maintain throughout life.

Since 1978, The Steadward Centre for Personal & Physical Achievement (TSC) has been a bastion of instruction, guidance and support in the areas of fitness programs, research, and counseling for Albertans with disability.

TSC celebrated its 25th anniversary milestone this past August, with a host of special activities for friends, client members and their families.

Studies show that by the year 2010, Alberta's disability population will reach an alarming 20 per cent. TSC is preparing to meet the future by launching a capital campaign for $33 million in the fall of 2003. Of this amount, $13 million will be targeted towards a new facility at the site of the University of Alberta's Foote Field on the South Campus. The remaining $20 million is slated for the establishment of an endowment fund with which to operate The Steadward Centre in perpetuity. Expanded space and services will allow TSC to meet the increasing needs of people with physical disability from all ages and levels of impairment.

Founder and CEO, Dr. Robert (Bob) D. Steadward, regards this anniversary as a compelling tribute to 25 years of focus on life enhancement for people with disability. "We are extremely proud of our success and reputation, and look forward to our future expansion," commented Steadward. "We are enormously pleased that the ACICR will be fellow occupants of our new building as we share a homogeneity of principles and ideals regarding health for all Albertans."

For information on The Steadward Centre, contact (780) 492-3182, or visit our website at

Originally published in ACICR Newsletter August 2003. Reprinted with permission.

Plan Ahead for Less Stress

Malcolm Sniher, Adapted Physical Activity Trainer, TSC

PALS stands for Planning Ahead for Less Stress. With the winter months almost upon us, many are preparing automobiles with seasonal tune-ups and fluid checks. It is just as good an idea to consider powered chair and scooter maintenance, as this is to be a cold winter.

Here are some considerations that we recommend to our clients to help avoid an inconvenience, or - far worse - a scary, life-threatening situation being stranded in the cold:

  • Has your chair or scooter battery been fully charged?
  • Are you sure that your battery is keeping a charge properly?
  • Do you have a backup battery system that needs attending to?
  • Are any gears / motors on your chair making unusual noises (repairs / replacement)?
  • Are any of your controllers functioning abnormally now OR acting different in colder weather?
  • Are your tires in adequate condition; do you have traction concerns?
  • Have you let someone know your estimated departure and arrival times if you’re traveling alone?
  • If you have a cell phone, is it functioning properly, kept fully charged and being kept OFF to reserve battery power?
  • Are you dressed appropriately for the elements?
  • Do you have some emergency money (i.e., for food or perhaps pay phone)?
  • At a last resort, if it is extremely cold, and you have some of the above concerns, is it urgent that you tackle the elements? Is it really necessary that you go outside?
  • Have I missed something? What can you add to your personal list?

At all of our three Steadward Centre sites, we promote independence for our clients. Sometimes it can be a struggle to achieve this, making it is easy to be preoccupied with routine daily activities, overlooking such seasonal precautions. From a trainer who cares, we not only want you to be able to get where you want, whenever you want to, but we want to see you come back.

Images from The Steadward Centre’s 25th Anniversary Celebration

Photos by Jean Weeks, TSC

About the Name of Newsletter

The Steadward Centre Logo

Achieve! was selected as the new name for The Steadward Centre Newsletter. "Achieve!" embodies the new name and mission of the Centre and the spirit represented by the logo. We hope you enjoy this issue and welcome your comments and suggestions for future issues.

achieve: v.t. Accomplish, carry out; acquire; reach (an end). Oxford English Dictionary.

SCITCS FES Clinic 10th Anniversary

TSC Staff

Another anniversary is being marked this year. 2003 is the tenth year of operation of the SCITCS FES Clinic at The Steadward Centre. An event will be held on December 8 at TSC.

Watch for an article in the next issue of Achieve! telling the story of the clinic and the special partnership between The Steadward Centre and the Spinal Cord Injury Treatment Centre Society.

Awards for Drs Steadward & McPherson

Golden Key Honours for Dr. Robert Steadward

In November 2003 Dr. Robert Steadward became an Honorary Member of the exclusive University of Alberta’s Golden Key International Honour Society for dedication to higher education, international leadership and commitment to sport.

Golden Key is a global community of academic achievers that provides opportunities for individual growth through leadership, career development, networking and service. It is an academic honours association that recognizes the top 15% of second, third and fourth year full and part-time students in all academic undergraduate fields. Community service is also a mandate of Golden Key.

Order of Canada for Dr. Gary McPherson

Chair of TSC’s Board of Directors, Gary William Wilcox McPherson, C.M., LLD (Hon.) was inducted to the Order of Canada on May 8, 2003.

His story is one of incredible determination. For nearly 35 years, Gary McPherson lived in a long-term care facility after childhood polio left him quadriplegic. Now living independently, he has become a leading social activist, wheelchair athlete and sports administrator, inspiring others with his record of social service. A key player within the Alberta Paraplegic Foundation and The Steadward Centre, among others, he has worked with every level of government to influence public policy and introduce legislation that reflects our commitment to building an inclusive society.

Upcoming Program Summary

Program Date(s) Registration Deadline
Specialty Fitness 
Water in Motion Jan 13 - Feb 17, 2004
2:00 pm to 3:00 pm
Jan 9, 2004
Yoga Feb 24 - Mar 23, 2004
2:00 pm to 3:00 pm
Feb 13, 2004
Beginning Kayaking TBA TBA
Special Events / Activities
TSC Christmas Bowl Dec 13 Dec 5
TSC Indoor Classic and Media Challenge at West Edmonton Mall  March 7, 2004 Deadline: 
  Day of the Event
Early Bird Deadline:
  Jan 30

Upcoming Seminars and Camps

Seminars (Dates & Times TBA)

  • Nutrition for Healthy Living
  • Adapted Technology

Conditioning Camp (Info: 466-7334)


  • Cardiovascular work
  • Power work
  • Ball handling
  • Team building skills
  • Circuit training and sprinting

Watch for the new program flyers in mid-December. For information on these or any TSC programs, call 492-9236, send an e-mail to or check our web site at 

The Steadward Centre for Personal & Physical Achievement
W1-67 Van Vliet Centre
University of Alberta
Edmonton, Alberta CANADA T6G 2H9

Phone: 780-492-3182
Fax: 780-492-7161 

Achieve!, the newsletter of The Steadward Centre, is published twice each year. 

The Newsletter is available in alternative format and on the Centre's website. Please phone 492-7091 to inquire about the format required.

Contributions and suggestions are welcomed from individuals and organizations associated with The Steadward Centre. 

Please e-mail contributions to or fax to 492-7161.

All materials copyright: © The Steadward Centre, 2002.

Problems with or questions about the site? Contact the Webmaster.

These pages are located on the University of Alberta's Faculty of Physical Education & Recreation's Web Server.

Alberta Sport, Recreation, Parks & Wildlife Foundation Logo



A Beneficiary of Lottery Fund Proceeds, through the Alberta Sport, Recreation, Parks & Wildlife Foundation

W1-67 Van Vliet Centre
University of Alberta
Edmonton, Alberta
Canada T6G 2H9
Telephone: 780-492-3182
Telefax: 780-492-7161