Mike Plante: With Disabilities, Going After His Dream

Mike Plante: With Disabilities, Going After His Dream

Mike Plante: With Disabilities, Going After His Dream

Mike Plante: With Disabilities, Going After His Dream

Mike Plante: With Disabilities, Going After His Dream
Mike Plante: With Disabilities, Going After His Dream

Mike Plante: With Disabilities, Going After His Dream

Skiing

Mike wearing ORORO Men's Heated Jacket 

Mike, a ski coach at Winter Park Resort in Colorado, was born with spina bifida and hip dysplasia. His mantra, “Just keep on going and not let anything stop you” is something he learned from his dad.  A WWII veteran, his dad shattered his ankle stateside during the war and was no longer able to bend it. 

Mike’s dad could not pursue his dream of skiing, running or being active. But he wanted all his children to learn how to ski. He taught them the value of perseverance and hard work, no matter the obstacle.

Mike learned to ski when he was only five despite not being able to snowplow - a technique beginners typically master - as a result of his physical challenges. He was determined to follow his dream of skiing and just kept plugging away at what he loved. With no formal training in skiing, he became a ski instructor at 24 years old.

Originally from the East Coast, Mike made Colorado his home in 1977, where he worked for the IRS by day and taught skiing evenings and weekends. He also raced in downhill skiing events on the disability circuit for 13 years. As Mike puts it, “I always said the skiing was my real job but did the other one (IRS) to pay for my habits.”

“Adaptability,” Mike says, is the biggest thing he has learned from his disability. “You take what you have,” he explains, “and adapt with it.” He has taught many skiers with disabilities, and he focuses on their strengths, working around any challenges. 

Mike Plante with his ORORO Heated Vest

Mike wearing his ORORO Classic Heated Vest

Mike’s first exposure to heated apparel was with another brand… but he wasn’t happy with it. He saw an ad for ORORO and decided to give it a try.  While only wearing ORORO for a short time, he hasn’t looked back.  Mike found ORORO to be thicker and warmer than the other competitive brand. He describes ORORO as “warm, comfortable and well-made” and “a big bear fur coat.”

Currently, Mike is a member of USSA (U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association), the national governing body of Olympic skiing and snowboarding.  He is certified as a level one coach with USSA and is a level three instructor with PSIA (Professional Ski Instructors of America).

Mike’s biggest dream for the future:  to stay healthy. This will allow him to continue skiing and teaching the sport. Thank you, Mike, for being an ORORO brand ambassador!

Show us how you stay warm while you work, share and tag @ororo.wear for a chance to be featured by us.

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