John Lowry

I grew up north of Boston and from my teens have cycled, cross country skied, and kayaked extensively (river and ocean). I learned young and I learned well: the harder the day, the bigger the feeling at the end of it.

For some people every day is a challenge. I trained for my black belt under a man who believed that the martial arts were for everyone including persons with disabilities- that indeed sport at its best transcends the activity and becomes about empowering growth and independence.

The experience influenced my decision to specialize in rehabilitation medicine following medical school. I now work at Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital in Boston and care for people with spinal cord injury, brain injury and other conditions that impair physical or cognitive functioning. Adaptive sports such as kayaking, archery, sled hockey and cycling are a vital way of enabling a person to acquire the skills and confidence to take on the larger work of living life to the fullest.

I meet this challenge in support of the many courageous people who serve and are served by the Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital Network and its adaptive sports program. They know so well the words Sir Edmund Hillary spoke: ‘It is not the mountain we conquer but ourselves.’