This month we highlight the great work from Team Canada Blind Hockey player and National Team Paraclimbing athlete Chaz Misuraca from Stratford Ontario.

Here is his inspiring and encouraging story from his own words:

“My first-time playing hockey after losing my vision went surprisingly well – same skate, same stick, and instead of looking for the puck, you listen for it. The first lesson I learned after my first Blind Hockey game was to not set limitations on myself.

I instantly fell in love with Blind Hockey, it was hard, and it was challenging me to new strengths. Just a few months later, in 2019 I competed in my first Canadian National Tournament, my team won gold and I won rookie of the year! That was the same year that Doug Gilmour was there and handed me my gold medal.

This was also the first time I met some of the members of the National Blind Hockey Team and it made me realize that if I applied myself more to the game, I could also make Team Canada.

I got hungry with full-time training, focusing more on nutrition, and working out like an athlete.  All the hard work paid off when I was named to the National Canadian Blind Hockey Team in 2022. That fall, Team Canada won a gold medal in Fort Wayne, so it was a big year for me.

Now I’m celebrating making the first round of players named to the 2024 National team and we’re gearing up to compete vs Team USA in St-Louis. Training to me is a full-time job. I’m working out 40 hours a week between hockey, rock climbing and the cross-training I do.

Sharing my love for Blind Hockey and rock climbing with youth who are blind or partially sighted brings me joy, I love emphasizing the importance of providing opportunities for these youngsters to explore various physical activities.

My goal is to establish a challenging benchmark for these kids, hoping that once they surpass it, they continue to raise the bar for future generations”.

Chaz was also featured in season 4 of the show Level Playing Field on Accessible Media Inc! The episode highlights different areas of Chaz’s lifestyle from yoga, mountain climbing and Blind Hockey. Here’s the link to watch the full episode: