Whoever said a person with a disability could not train like a pro did not know what he was talking about. Indeed, it shouldn’t deter you from struggling for your life if you have a physical disability. That is what survival is after all: battling tooth and nail to survive and see another day. Granted, there are various forms of disability you or a loved one have. Inability to walk, ruptured bones, blindness — these all affect the planning things you can do.
Let me send you a couple of short ideas on what to do in your situation. I’m not going to go too far into them because there’s a lot of articles doing so.
Tip: This might be something you want to learn even though you are not impaired right now. There’s always a risk you’re going to become so during or after a disaster.
Prepare to Bug In
Obviously, whether you are in a wheelchair, running through the forest or along the highway is a terrible idea. Good news though: In any case, most preppers plan to bug in. Bugging out is much harder, so you definitely shouldn’t in most situations, unless you really, really have to go.
Bugging in mainly revolves around stockpiling not only food and water but also medications, equipment, clothes, books, board games, spices, herbs, seeds, etc.
No, I haven’t lost my mind. I’m sure you’re familiar with Paralympic athletes. They’re taking physical training very seriously, and if you do me a favor and watch the clip below, I’m willing to bet it’s going to motivate the heck out of you:
Now, I don’t know what kind of impairment you have, but I’m sure a coach will be able to help you choose the right exercises for you.
Improve Your Home Security
Okay, I know you do not have a huge budget, but there are still ways you haven’t thought of reducing your expenses. If you’re going to be bugging in, you need to know that defending your turf would be tougher for you than for the regular prepper. As such, no extra step of security is too much, including the ability to barricade the entire house (all external doors and windows).
Start a Survival Group
If you know other preppers in your city, you might be the one to arrange regular meetings, not just learning from each other, but coagulating a survival group as well. Finding other people who are like-minded is not only a pre-collapse pleasure but a requirement when it happens.
Your EDC, GHB, and BOB Attached to Your Wheelchair?
Most likely you have a mobility bag but do you have survival items? Because your wheelchair is the only thing that helps you to get about, it’s clear that you should have some supplies attached to it; you have probably thought about this already.
Get to Really Know Your Dog
Your dog can be your ears if you’re deaf, but only if you can understand his behavior. Just something to focus on. And if you don’t have a dog, then I highly recommend that you get one and train him to help. You don’t need a very big one to survive; that’s a common misconception.
Learn to Read Lips
You may run into people in a SHTF situation who do not know sign language. Plus, if you have to barter with him, in case he wants to cheat you into making a bad deal, this will be your ace in the sleeve.
Focus on Self-Defense
A pocket knife, pepper spray, a gun — you may not be able to take classes on self-defense, but at least you’ll have a shield on your side, no matter how unfair the fight is going to be. In a separate article you can find my list of recommendations on EDC knife.
Store the Right Survival Items
Besides the obvious things to stockpile, consider the ones that are specific to your disability:
- Pen and paper, chalk and a chalkboard (to be able to communicate with people in writing if they don’t know sign language)
- Tactile maps of the area
- If you can’t hear a traditional alarm, get one that produces bright lights or vibrates.
- One-handed can openers
- Rugged wheelchair
Get in Touch With Other Disabled People on the Internet
If you don’t personally know any other deaf preppers, you’ll surely find some on the biggest survival forum, www.SurvivalistBoards.com. Use the search function to find topics related to your impairment, and don’t shy away from starting your own thread if you can’t find what you’re looking for.
Consider a Generator for Your Wheelchair
…or a solar charger. If there’s a blackout, you’re going to need it. While you’re at it, consider stockpiling batteries for your hearing aid.
This is the hardest thing to do because when you need them, doctors do not give prescriptions. I am not a doctor either, so please just take my advice for knowledge purposes, but you need to find ways to create a small stockpile. I’ve read about preppers skipping prescription days just, so they can stock up when they’re not going to have access.
You may also become an expert in herbal remedies. It is a very vast subject requiring a lot of testing, but who knows, maybe if you are working with your doctor to find these natural remedies, you will reduce your medication dependency.
Does It Make Sense to Have a Bug-Out Vehicle?
If the circumstances are right, sure it would. You’d have to have someone who can drive of course. Maybe you can find a cheap van and install a ramp for you to easily get into the vehicle.
Focus on Skills
Yeah, this is true of any prepper, disabled or not, but it’s worth saying. Our great-grandfathers, who were used to living off grid, used many of the survival skills, so they’re worth learning in depth. There’s a whole set of skills related to bugging in and homesteading: gardening, weaving, composting, canning, tying knots, smoking and curing meat, hand washing, knitting, and on and on and on.