On March 20th, 2011 while winter kayaking Jason Craig hit a 30’ waterfall and landed on a submerged rock which shattered his sacrum, burst fractured L4, L5, and suffered neurological compression and severage. This injury left Jason with many questions as to his future as an athlete and also burdened him with an unbelievable amount of constant pain.

The High Fives Foundation provided Jason with rehabilitative healing therapies such as Physical Therapy with Scott Williams (P.T.) of Synergy Therapeautics, Acupuncture with Bird Lew (L.Ac), Massage Therapy with Karen Stubbs (L.M.T.), winter ski equipment and lessons as well BAR Effect classes with Michelle Rahlves. These therapies along with time spent in the gym, and in the water would not be possible without the generosity of the donations received through the Winter Empowerment Fund, SpineNevada and an anonymous donor from the water sports industry.

The Winter Empowerment Fund helps athletes living with a life-altering injury such as a Traumatic Brain Injury or Spinal Cord Injury; reach their personal goals such as walking again, returning to skiing/snowboarding or competing in adaptive sports. Additionally, the Winter Empowerment Fund provides athletes with personalized support services, provider referrals, funding for alternative therapies and adaptive equipment, as well as free access to our Healing Center. The High Fives Foundation’s Board of Directors awards grants upon approval by the Grant Selection Committee. To date, 54 athletes have been helped via the Winter Empowerment Fund.

About Jason Craig: A Reno, NV resident, Jason found his passion in paddling at a young age and traveled around the globe as a professional kayaker. At 16 he won the 2009 Freestyle Kayaking World Championships in Thun, Switzerland. His story is one of triumph over adversity and a steadfast determination to return to the top echelon of the sport he loves: white water kayaking.

This video illustrates the profound wisdom seldom seen in a young person, especially one that has suffered such trauma to mind and body. To rise from a terrible low, to live and learn while moving forward positively and to share his vision of success in recovery is part of Jason's life as an athlete. Jason is now working hard to hike out of the Zambezi, ski powder, boulder in Bishop, and run the high Sierra multi-day classics once again.

To learn more about the Healing Network that Jason Craig is utilizing, to donate to his recovery and to discover the story of the High Fives Foundation point your browser to highfivesfoundation.org.

Thank you for your support and look for Jason exploring more wild rivers in the near future!

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