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SOME INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT
BLIND WATER SKIING
Jon Schorsch
INTRODUCTION
Jon Schorsch served as a sergeant with the Port of Seattle Police
Department and led a team of 20 police officers. In 2017, Mr. Schorsch
sustained visual impairment following an accident at sea but
maintained his active involvement with the Department after he was
medically reinstated. A member of the Lake Sammamish Water Ski
Club, Jon Schorsch continues to enjoy water skiing despite being blind.
An adaptive sport, the International Water Ski and Wakeboard Federation
oversees competitions among blind skiers. The organization also regulates water
skiing competitions worldwide. There following are interesting facts about blind
water skiing.
1. Visually impaired English tech executive Chris Mairs receives credit for the
creation of a device that helps blind skiers navigate through the water. In 1999,
Mairs created the Audio Slalom Signal Generator (ASSG), a device that provides
the angular measurement of the rope to the boat’s path. The ASSG sends a tone to
the blind skier after pulling far enough to the outside to make a turn around a
buoy.
2. Blind water skier Gerald Price and blind speed boat driver Mark Threadgold
hold the record for the fastest blind team on the water. In October 2004, the pair
crossed Lake Windermere at a speed of 46.2 mph. This partnership is also the first
case of “a blind leading the blind” in water skiing.
3. English IT engineer Steve Thiele holds the Guinness World Record for the
longest water skiing distance by a blind skier. He attempted to cover the area
around Anglesey island in Wales, estimated at 70 miles. Although Thiele covered a
distance of 23.85 miles, he was able to overcome the previous record of 20 miles.

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Some Interesting Facts about Blind Water Skiing

  • 1. SOME INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT BLIND WATER SKIING Jon Schorsch
  • 2. INTRODUCTION Jon Schorsch served as a sergeant with the Port of Seattle Police Department and led a team of 20 police officers. In 2017, Mr. Schorsch sustained visual impairment following an accident at sea but maintained his active involvement with the Department after he was medically reinstated. A member of the Lake Sammamish Water Ski Club, Jon Schorsch continues to enjoy water skiing despite being blind.
  • 3. An adaptive sport, the International Water Ski and Wakeboard Federation oversees competitions among blind skiers. The organization also regulates water skiing competitions worldwide. There following are interesting facts about blind water skiing.
  • 4. 1. Visually impaired English tech executive Chris Mairs receives credit for the creation of a device that helps blind skiers navigate through the water. In 1999, Mairs created the Audio Slalom Signal Generator (ASSG), a device that provides the angular measurement of the rope to the boat’s path. The ASSG sends a tone to the blind skier after pulling far enough to the outside to make a turn around a buoy.
  • 5. 2. Blind water skier Gerald Price and blind speed boat driver Mark Threadgold hold the record for the fastest blind team on the water. In October 2004, the pair crossed Lake Windermere at a speed of 46.2 mph. This partnership is also the first case of “a blind leading the blind” in water skiing.
  • 6. 3. English IT engineer Steve Thiele holds the Guinness World Record for the longest water skiing distance by a blind skier. He attempted to cover the area around Anglesey island in Wales, estimated at 70 miles. Although Thiele covered a distance of 23.85 miles, he was able to overcome the previous record of 20 miles.