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I’m a married 31 year-old who has been diagnosed with fibromylagia for 12 years. I am on a quest to raise awareness and help others by sharing information and staying positive. Read more
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Tips & Tools for Attending Sporting Events

Recently I went to a baseball game, so I thought I’d share some of my tips & tools for attending sporting events with fibromyalgia, while they were fresh in my mind! When considering which seats to buy tickets for, there are many things you might want to take into consideration: How many stairs will be needed to be climbed? How many people will need to be climbed over to get to the seat (look for seats at the ends of rows)? How far away is the section is from an elevator/escalator? If you’re able to spend a little extra money I highly suggest getting club level seats. These seats are typically cushioned, have a little more room on all sides and consist of shorter rows (less people to climb over). Another bonus to sitting at club levels it that the concourse itself (the loop outside the seats, where the food is) is often heated/air-conditioned, allowing you to warm up or cool off if you’re feeling uncomfortable.

Speaking of being comfortable, I suggest dressing in layers. Depending on if the stadium is in or outdoors some things to consider wearing/brining are a sweater/jacket/coat, gloves, hat, scarf, and blanket. Other items to consider bringing are hand-held battery-powered fans, hand warmers or toe/feet warmers and ear plugs if the fans are known to be especially loud. Don’t forget to bring any pills you need to take or back-up pain killers for you to use if needed. If the event is outdoors you’ll also want to be sure to bring sunglasses, sunscreen and maybe even a hat. When you get to the event take advantage of the ushers at the entrance. Ask them what the best way is to get to your seat to save yourself from extra walking. You may even be directed to a hard-to-spot escalator or elevator!

Eating food in your lap is one of those things that can be tricky at a sporting event, for anybody! The part that I think is especially tricky for those with fibromyalgia is carrying food while climbing stairs and over people to get to your seat. With all the small, shallow steps that our muscle memory isn’t used to, we need to be holding onto the railings! If the stadium you’re at has cocktail tables (small & tall) available to eat at near the concessions, I highly suggest taking advantage of that. If you don’t want to miss any of the game, arrive a little early so you can eat and head to your seat before the game begins. Just in case you do end up buying some Cracker Jacks or cotton candy from your seat, bring along some hand sanitizer too.

What are some of your tips & tools for attending sporting events?

Baseball crowd

"Take me out to the ballgame..."


Comment from Charlene
Time April 18, 2011 at 12:13 pm

Great information. Glad I was able to read it.


Felicia Fibro Reply:

I’m glad you found it helpful, Charlene!


Comment from Amber
Time April 18, 2011 at 12:16 pm

Great article! You give some tips that can really help make an event Fibro-Friendly.

The other things that I would add to your list is to study a layout of the arena and parking before you go. When I go to events, I arrive an hour or so early so I can get a closer disability parking place. Just because I feel good going into the event doesn’t mean that I will be feeling good after, and that walk to the car can feel like forever after sitting for so long. I also pick aisle seats so I can get up and stretch as I need too and when someone wants to climb over me I can just get up and let them pass.

I tend to stick one of those pain patches for muscle groups in my purse before I leave. That way, if my back starts hurting I can go to the bathroom and place it on my back, within a brief bit of time its like I have a heating pad right there in my seat! If I don’t have one available, I will take my icy hot. :)

Thanks again,
amberrlouise79 on twitter
Amber recently posted: Story of Amber- Wizard of Oz Style


Felicia Fibro Reply:

Thanks, Amber! I agree, that walk back to the car can feel like one of the most taxing things about going to events! Often times I am quite stiff during that walk, after sitting through most of the game. Pain patches are a great suggestion for one of the pain killers to bring along!


Comment from Kelly Early
Time April 18, 2011 at 3:21 pm

I love football and have been to evey Colts game for the past 16 years. So when Fibro starting taking over my body I was not going to let it keep me from football. I have a football survival bag and here is what it contains: Arm rest covers, I made myself with some foam wraped in soft material. The look like a square thin pillow, fold it over the arm rest and safty pin it underneith. EARPLUGS! I cant clap so I found these gloves that have little pom pom on the ends ofthe fingers. Meds, sunscreen, fan, sunglasses, & hat just like Felicia suggest. Then lip balm, aspercream and Gold bond. This Fibro thing may have changed my life, but I AM NOT going to let it stop me.


Felicia Fibro Reply:

Wow, Kelly you are a die-hard fan! It is great to hear that you’re not letting your fibromyalgia stop you from having a blast, cheering your team on! Thanks for sharing your survival bag contents with us. I almost included lip balm with sunscreen in my post too! I always keep it in my purse. That is such a creative idea for the arm rest cushioned covers! The metal/plastic arm rests are always very hard!


Comment from GinaRClark
Time April 19, 2011 at 6:56 am

Great suggestions all! For those who attend amusements parks as well as sporting events I would add: don’t be shy, rent the wheelchair, you’ll be glad later; drink LOTS of water rather than soda or alcoholic beverages; carry your own healthy snacks so you’re not reliant on walking far for good food; and mostly pace yourself. That long walk at end of the day shouldn’t be torture.


Felicia Fibro Reply:

Great tips, Gina! I’m a huge advocate for using wheelchairs or scooters anytime they can help you decrease pain and increase how much you enjoy doing activities! I’m happy that more stadiums are incorporating healthier food choices, but often times those vendors are sparsely scattered around the stadium. If the stadium allows you to bring in food, it is a great option!


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