Erik Mendez Shares About Coaching the Houston Rolling Astros and Watering Seeds Organization’s Upcoming Wheelchair Super Bowl
Erik Mendez is the Sports & Tournament Director for the Houston-based non-profit, Watering Seeds Organization. He was born with Arthrogryposis Multiplex and has used a wheelchair all his life. He is an avid sports lover and is the coach of the Houston Rolling Astros.
Erik Mendez, of Houston, has been “rolling since birth,” but was a teenager when he discovered an interest for adaptive sports. He first played wheelchair basketball and enjoyed it, but life got busy and he didn’t keep playing.
After about a decade absent from the adaptive sports world, he returned some years back to take a leadership role and began organizing teams, coaching and directing tournaments.
Today, Erik’s adaptive sports focus is on wheelchair football, softball and soccer. He is the coach of the Houston Rolling Astros and was integral in the creation of the team, which is going on their 5th year playing.“We put this team together about 4 years ago going on our 5th year. We have been presented yearly on the field by the Houston Astros. We have participated in tournaments in Houston yearly and have been almost in every championship game. We have traveled to national tournaments, [which included visits to] Chicago, Minnesota, Mississippi, and Dallas.”
The team is made up of fifteen athletes ranging from different disabilities and injuries, including an injured veteran, a purple heart veteran, amputees, spina bifida and other spinal cord injuries.
The Houston Rolling Astros are always looking for more players! If interested, just contact Erik by email or at 832-971-9290.
VIDEO: SEE HOW WHEELCHAIR FOOTBALL IS PLAYED
Watering Seeds Brings Adaptive Sports Opportunities to People with Disabilities
Erik Mendez has been working with the Watering Seeds Organization (WSO) for about a year and a half. Per their website, WSO was founded to create sports rehabilitation and recreational opportunities for individuals with disabilities. WSO was inspired by a Paralympic wheelchair tennis exhibition held at UCLA in the summer of 2004. Founder, Brady Mazzola, a tennis professional, had never seen elite wheelchair tennis and was amazed by the heroic spirit, heart, and courage these athletes possessed.
WSO is dedicated to empowering our youth, wounded warriors, and challenged civilian communities through education, media, inspirational sports mentorship programs, and live entertainment events.
“Watering Seeds is a spiritual metaphor for seeing beyond self to help others grow… Consequently, you reap what you sow!”
The next Wheelchair Super Bowl Takes Place in January 2018
WSO is preparing for their 2nd Annual Wheelchair Super Bowl, set for January 27-28 in Pasadena, Texas. Erik will be on hand as the Tournament Director and the whole team is excited about this event!
“Last year we had 6 teams participate. Every year we hope to add more and more teams. Our vision is to make wheelchair football grow as big as wheelchair basketball has gotten. We play 7-on-7, two-hand touch. It is a very competitive sport. Last year we had a few former NFL players show up and spectate – even had them give it a try. This year we are hoping for bigger surprises,” Erik says.
Do you think the Wheelchair Super Bowl sounds like an awesome event? Well, they’re still looking for sponsors, teams, and would love to have all seating filled for the tournament. For info, email Erik Mendez or call 832-971-9290.
“We love to showcase the competitiveness that is wheelchair football,” Erik adds with a smile.
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