Achilles International was founded in New York City in 1983 by an amputee marathoner,Richard (Dick) Traum. Achilles has since grown to more than 140 chapters on six continents.
Brian McLean who is both visually and hearing impaired established Achilles Canada in June of 1999.
The idea of Achilles is a simple one, but the results are profound. Achilles provides the means and support to persons who are challenged by a variety of disabilities to realize their abilities, build self-esteem and to develop their level of physical fitness and strength thereby elevating their overall wellness, through running or other means of motion. Motion is accessible to all, Achilles assists in breaking down barriers between able bodied people and people with disabilities, thereby contributing to a collective enhancement of life.
Achilles provides the unique support and training to runners, walkers and wheelers of all levels. With the assistance of volunteer instructors/guides, the Achilles athletes participate in weekly clinics to help them reach their goals.
A strong support system of able-bodied volunteers provides additional confidence and support during such workouts and at races. Many of the Achilles athletes go on to run in internationally renowned marathons such as the New York City Marathon, Boston Marathon and both the Scotiabank Waterfront and Toronto Marathons.