By: Noam Mantel
This great tag line cleverly created by Channel 4 refers to one of the biggest events of the year – The Paralympic Games. Following every Olympics since 1948, the Paralympics have given athletes with physical disabilities the chance to shine. Besides its existence, not many people are fully aware of what happens during the Paralympic Games. This year, that’s all going to change so we’re here to get you excited about new sports you didn’t know existed.
Disability Categories allowed at the Games:
- Cerebral Palsy
- Intellectual Disability
- Visually Impaired
- Others which do not fit these five include - dwarfism, multiple sclerosis, and congenital deformities
Location is Everything
The IOC (International Olympic Committee) and the IPC (International Paralympic Committee) signed an agreement in 2001 stating that the Paralympics will be hosted by the same city as the Olympics just a few weeks after. This basically means that the Games starting on the 29th will be held in London and will be facilitated by the same arenas and stadiums.
Tickets and Coverage
I myself flew to London to watch Olympic events. I was amazed by how much they invested in getting the locals excited about the upcoming Paralympic Games. The tag line “Thanks for the Warm-Up” (which will soon be a popular hashtag on social media website) sufficiently illustrated a statement – “we’re here”. So far, the impression is that these games will be much bigger and generate much more revenue than past Paralympic Games. Of 2.5 million tickets, 2.3 have been sold according to BBC News and 140,000 tickets released last week were sold in a matter of hours and are hoping to sell out of the first time in Paralympic history.
1. Oscar Pistorius, South Africa, Sprinter
Oscar is actually the first amputee in history to run at both the Olympics (first to make a final) and Paralympics. According to his site, he was born without his fibula, the outside bone that runs from your knee to your ankle.
2. Bardley Snyder, USA, Swimmer
Bradley lost his eyesight not even a year ago and already achieved qualification for the Paralympics, which is an incredible accomplishment. He swam for the USA Navy, where he still on active duty. In Afghanistan, 2011, and IED detonated close to him which heavily injured his face and compromised his sight.
3. Jody Cundy, Great Britain, Indoor Cyclist
Jody is a 5 time gold medalist and he isn’t pulling the breaks just yet. He was born with a deformed foot that was amputated at the age of 3 (check out his site)
I believe congrats are in order since you’re now knowledgeable enough to start following the Paralympics. Oh yeah, and don’t forget to thank the Olympics for the fantastic warm-up.
Noam Mantel (@noammantel) is a Marketing Manager at Treato and one of the company’s veteran employees. She is a retired basketball player and an avid sports fan.