“]The first archery competition for those with physical impairments was held at the Stoke Mandeville Hospital in 1948, and it was one of the original Paralympic sports at the Rome 1960 Paralympic Games.The sport has three different classifications and athletes in 54 countries are currently practicing archery. It is comprised of individual and team events in both standing and wheelchair competitions. Athletes shoot from a distance at a target marked with 10 scoring zones.At the London 2012 Games, 140 athletes competed in nine different medal events.
|Address||World Archery, Maison du Sport, International Avenue de Rhodanie 54, 1007 Lausanne, Switzerland|
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|IPC Sports Council Representative||Carole Hicks|
IPC Sports Council Representative Carole Hicks
IPC Sports Council Representative Carole Hicks
Athletics has been a part of the Paralympic Games since 1960 and being that it offers the largest number of events, it attracts the largest number of athletes and spectators.
It is practiced by athletes in more than 100 countries, and those athletes compete according to their functional classification in each event. Some compete in wheelchairs and some with prostheses, while those who are visually impaired receive guidance from a sighted guide.
The events on the Paralympic programme include:
Track events: Sprint (100m, 200m, 400m); middle distance (800m, 1,500m); long distance (5,000m, 10,000m) and relay races (4x100m, 4x400m)
Road event: Marathon
Field events: High jump, long jump, triple jump, discus, shot put, javelin
Combined events: Pentathlon
At the London 2012 Games, 1,100 athletes will compete in 170 medal events.
To ensure competition is fair and equal, all Paralympic sports have a system in place which ensures that winning is determined by skill, fitness, power, endurance, tactical ability and mental focus, the same factors that account for success in sport for able bodied athletes.
This process is called classification and its purpose is to minimise the impact of impairments on the activity (sport discipline). Having the impairment thus is not sufficient. The impact on the sport must be proved, and in each Paralympic sport, the criteria of grouping athletes by the degree of activity limitation resulting from the impairment are named ‘Sport Classes’. Through classification, it is determined which athletes are eligible to compete in a sport and how athletes are grouped together for competition. This, to a certain extent, is similar to grouping athletes by age, gender or weight.
Classification is sport-specific because an impairment affects the ability to perform in different sports to a different extent. As a consequence, an athlete may meet the criteria in one sport, but may not meet the criteria in another sport.
In Athletics the sport class consists of a prefix “T” for Track/Jumps and “F” for Field and indicates for which events the sport class applies.
The three sport classes 11, 12 and 13 are allocated to athletes with varying degrees of visual impairment, with sport class 11 including athletes with the lowest vision and sport class 13 including athletes with the best vision meeting the minimum criteria. All athletes in the T11 sport class run with a guide runner and are blindfolded. Athletes in sport class T12 may also chose to run with a guide.
Athletes in this class are diagnosed with intellectual impairment and meet sport-specific minimum impairment criteria in 1,500m, long jump or shot put, respectively.
The 30s sport classes are allocated to athletes with athetosis, ataxia and/or hypertonia. The impairments typically affect the ability to control legs, trunk, arms and hands. The lower the number is, the more significant the activity limitation.
Athletes in the sport classes 31-34 compete in a seated position, e.g. in wheelchair racing or using a throwing chair. In contrast, athletes in the sport classes 35-38 show a better function in their legs and better trunk control and therefore compete standing, e.g. in running events, long jump or throwing events.
Athletes with short stature compete in the sport class F40 and F41. Athletes in F40 have a shorter stature than F41.
These sport classes are designated for athletes with limb deficiencies, such as amputations. In the sport classes 42-44 the legs are affected by impairment and in the sport classes 45-46 the arms are affected, for example by above or below elbow amputations.
For example, a shot put athlete with a single above-the-knee amputation competes in sport class F42.
All athletes in the 40s classes compete standing and do not use a wheelchair.
The 50s sport classes only include athletes competing in a wheelchair. Again, a lower number indicates a higher activity limitation.
Athletes competing in wheelchair racing events for T51-54 sport classes differ in regards to their arm and shoulder functions, which are pertinent for pushing a wheelchair. Athletes in classes T51-52 have activity limitations in both lower and upper limbs, for example, due to tetraplegia. Unlike athletes in the sport classes T51-53, athletes competing in T54 have partial trunk and leg function.
For field events, wheelchair athletes compete in more differentiated classes.
Athletes in sport classes F51-54 have limited shoulder, arm and hand functions to different degrees and no trunk or leg function. This profile is for example seen with tetraplegic athletes. Athletes in the class F54 have normal function in their arms and hands.
Throughout the sport classes F55-58 the trunk and leg function increases, which is an advantage in throwing events. For example, an athlete with an amputation on one leg could also compete in the F58 sport class.
It is the responsibility of the Athlete to submit a copy of the Medical Diagnostic Form and all relevant documentation to IPC Athletics. The athlete should bring a copy of this document each time he/she presents for classification.
Medial Diagnostic Form (doc)
IPC Athletics Classification System
In 2003 IPC Athletics initiated a research programme to consider how the sports classification system could be enhanced by the application of a more scientific and objectively based approach. Such enhancements would be consistent with the IPC Classification Code.
You will find below a document prepared by the principle researcher, Dr. Sean Tweedy. Any questions in relation to the document below should be directed to IPC Athletics via email firstname.lastname@example.org
IPC Classification Project for Physical Impairments Final report – Stage 1 updated 16 July 2010 (pdf)
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IPC Sports Council Representative David Hadfield
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Powerlifting is the ultimate test of upper body strength and can sometimes see athletes lift more than three times their own body weight.
It is open to male and female athletes with the following eight (8) eligible physical impairments (impaired muscle power, impaired passive range of movement, limb deficiency, leg length difference, short stature, hypertonia, ataxia, and athetosis) with a range of physical disabilities, including (Cerebral Palsy, Spinal Cord injuries, Lower Limb Amputation, poliomyelitis), who meet the current minimal eligibility criteria and can perform, safely and appropriately, according to the IPC Powerlifting rules. All eligible athletes compete in one sport class, but in different weight categories.
The bench press is the sport’s single discipline, with 10 different categories based on body weight. Competitors must lower the bar to the chest, hold it motionless on the chest and then press it upwards to arms length with locked elbows. Athletes are given three attempts and the winner is the athlete who lifts the highest number of kilograms.
The sport is governed by the IPC and co-ordinated by the IPC Powerlifting Technical Committee.
Athletes must be at least 14 years of age and have the ability to fully extend the arms with no more than a 20 degree loss of full extension on either elbow when making an approved lift.
Men compete in the 49kg, 54kg, 59kg, 65kg, 72kg, 80kg, 88kg, 97kg, 107kg and +107kg divisions.
Women compete in the 41kg, 45kg, 50kg, 55kg, 61kg, 67kg, 73kg, 79kg, 86kg and +86kg divisions.
In powerlifting, male and female athletes assume a position on a specially designed bench and, after taking or receiving the bar at arms length, the lifter shall wait with locked elbows for the Chief Referee’s signal. After receiving the signal “start”, the lifter must lower the bar to the chest, hold it motionless (visible) on the chest and then press it upwards, with an even extension of the arms,-to-arms length with locked elbows. When held motionless in this position the audible signal “rack” shall be given. An immediate decision shall be given by the three nominated international referees through a system of white and red lights.
Each athlete has three attempts. If an athlete wishes to make an attempt in order to achieve a record, they can make a fourth attempt.
For further information, please visit the rules and regulations section of the site.
IPC Powerlfiting approved discs must conform to a number of standards outlined in the sport’s rules and regulations. Athletes compete lying on an official bench which is 2.1m long. The main part of the bench is 61cm wide. At the end of the bench and towards the head, the bench narrows down to 30cm. The height of the bench varies between 48 and 50cm from the ground.
In 1964 “Weightlifting” made its debut at the Tokyo Paralympic Games and featured just men with spinal cord injuries.
Over the following years the sport started to include other disability groups and incorporate rules identical to those of Powerlifting competitions for able bodied athletes.
In 1992 it was decided that the Paralympics should only feature powerlifting as opposed to weightlifting. The resulting Barcelona Games saw athletes from 25 countries compete for medals.
By the 1996 Atlanta Games this number had increased to 58 and by 2000, the year women first competed in Paralympic Powerlifting, the sport was practiced on all five continents.
Today the sport boasts hundreds of athletes from more than 100 countries.
At the London 2012 Games, 200 athletes will compete in 20 medal events
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The sport of shooting is a challenge of accuracy and control, in which competitors use pistols or rifles to fire a series of shots at a stationary target. In this precision sport, athletes use focus and controlled breathing to reduce their heart rates and improve stability and high performance. This ability to steady hand and mind to deliver a sequence of shots requires well-developed powers of concentration and emotional control.
Open to athletes who have a physical impairment leading to reduced function in the lower and/or upper limb(s), IPC Shooting employs a functional classification system, where athletes compete in sport classes based on their functional ability, rather than impairment-type. Athletes compete in one of two sport classes (SH1 & SH2), depending on their impairment.
SH1 class includes athletes with lower limb impairments and either no upper limb impairments, or an upper limb impairment that does not prevent the athlete from supporting the weight of the rifle or pistol themselves (i.e. in the non-shooting arm for pistol shooters). Many, but not all, athletes compete in a sitting position either from a wheelchair or chair/stool.
SH2 class includes athletes who also have more severe upper limb impairments, which prevents the athlete from supporting the weight of the rifle themselves. SH2 athletes compete only in rifle events, and use a spring mounted stand to support the weight of the rifle. Some athletes also require a support assistant to load the rifle for them.
Athletes compete in events from distances of 10m, 25m and 50m in men’s, women’s and mixed competitions.
The sport is governed by the IPC and co-ordinated by the IPC Shooting Sport Technical Committee following the modified rules of the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF). These rules take into account the differences that exist between shooting for the able-bodied and shooting for persons with an impairment.
The goal of shooting is to place a series of shots inside the centre ring of the bull’s-eye. The target is comprised of 10 concentric scoring rings with a score grade of one to 10, the central ring giving 10 points. In all finals, and in some qualification rounds, to further challenge athletes and really refine their skills, the scoring rings are each further subdivided into a further 10 scoring zones to give decimal place scoring system, with 10.9 being the very centre of the target and the highest possible score per shot.
Shooting competitions are divided into two major events: rifle and pistol competitions at three distances: 10, 25 and 50m. The rules depend on the gun (air or .22 calibre), the distance, the target, the shooting position, the number of shots and the time limit. Competitors accumulate points for the value of their shots.
Scores for each shot in the qualification round are accumulated to give the athlete a total score. The top eight athletes in the qualification round qualify for the final, however qualification scores are not carried over into the final, meaning each finalist starts from zero. In an exciting test of nerves, skill and focus, athletes with the lowest scores are eliminated over the course of a final, until a duel between the two remaining athletes for gold and silver medals ensues.
To give you an idea of the level of the accuracy required, in air rifle events athletes fire at a bulls-eye which is only 0.05cm wide – which is as big as a full-stop.
Of the 12 Paralympic shooting events, six are open to both women and men, three are open to women only and three are open to men only.
Athletes use .22 calibre rifles and air guns (pneumatic, CO2 gas or spring). Upon trigger activation, the CO2 liquid changes to gas and activates the projectile toward the target. The pneumatic rifle uses a multiple pump system to store air pressure in a reservoir and trigger compression activates the projectile toward the target.
For 10m events held with an air rifle or air pistol, bullets with a diameter of 4.5mm are use. For 25m pistol events, and 50m pistol and rifle events, 5.6mm bullets are used.
The standard target is a cardboard square with concentric white and black rings around a black centre ring (or bull’s-eye). For the Paralympic Games, five different targets are used depending on the type of gun. These targets are electronic for increased accuracy.
Shooting has been part of the Paralympic Games since Toronto in 1976. Since the 1980 Paralympic Games shooting has developed from a disability-orientated classification system towards a functional classification system. This has resulted in a reduction in the number of classes from five classes with separate events at the Seoul 1988 Paralympic Games to three classes with integrated events since the Atlanta 1996 Paralympics.
In late 2010 the IPC and the International Shooting Sport Federation (ISSF) signed a Memorandum of Understanding to continue working together in developing Shooting further in the years ahead.
It covers several areas including management, promotion of competitions and events, knowledge exchange and general development of the Paralympic Sport and participating athletes.
While the IPC’s shooting competitions will remain completely independent in the near future, it was agreed that ISSF would work with IPC Shooting to identify suitable ISSF Technical Officials to be involved in IPC recognized competitions. In such cases, the ISSF would remain as the sole and supreme authority controlling the certification of ISSF officials.
Today the IPC Shooting is practiced in nearly 60 countries.
At the London 2012 Games, 140 athletes took part in 12 medal events
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A FINA standard eight-lane 50m pool is required for competition at the Paralympic Games. Events are conducted as heats for eight competitors per class and with the fastest eight swimmers per class competing in the finals. There are various forms for swimmers to start their race; in the water, a dive start sitting on the starting platform or the typical standing start.
During a swimming event, swimmers who are blind are required to have an assistant to help him/her as he or she approaches the swimming pool end wall, either to make a turn or for the finish of the race. This process is called tapping and performed by a “tapper”. These swimmers are also required to wear blackened goggles in all their events.
The clothing for swimmers is a bathing suit. It is forbidden for athletes to use anything that may aid the swimmers speed, buoyancy or endurance. Swimming caps and protective eye-goggles are permitted. The goggles protect the swimmers’ eyes as well as improving their vision in the water.
Swimming has been part of the Paralympic programme since the first Games in Rome in 1960 and has seen the number of athletes and countries take part increase every four years since. The USA’s Trischa Zorn is the sport’s most decorated Paralympian having won 32 gold, 9 silver and 5 bronze medals between 1980 and 2004.
At the London 2012 Games 604 swimmers from 74 countries competed in 148 medal events.
World Championships are held every two years in addition to regional Championships. In August 2013, the Canadian city of Montreal staged the IPC Swimming World Championships attracting 479 athletes from 54 countries who took part in 172 medal events.
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Main Contact Alison Burchell
IPC Sports Council Representative Alison Burchell
Address International Triathlon Union (ITU) 221, 998 Harbourside Dr. North Vancouver BC Canada V7P 3T2
Phone + 1 604 904 9248
Main Contact Grant Darby (CAN), Para-Triathlon Committee
IPC Sports Council Representative Eric Angstadt
Address 109-189 Watson St. – R2P2E1 Winnipeg (Canada)
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Main Contact Maureen Orchard
IPC Sports Council Representative Maureen Orchard
Wheelchair dance sport is an extremely elegant, graceful and stylish sport which involves athletes with a physical impairment that affects the lower limbs.
Participants can compete “combi” style, dancing with an able bodied (standing) partner, or duo dance for two wheelchair users together. Group dance involves wheelchair users only or together with able-bodied partners whereas single dance sees a wheelchair user dance alone.
Standard dances include waltz, tango, Viennese waltz, slow foxtrot and quickstep.
Latin American dances include the samba, cha-cha-cha, rumba, paso doble and jive.
There are also Formation dances for four, six or eight couples dancing in formation.
Since 1998 the sport has been governed by the IPC and co-ordinated by the IPC Wheelchair Dance Sport Technical Committee which incorporates the rules of the International Dance Sport Federation (IDSF). The sport is not part of the summer Paralympic Games sports programme.
In recent years the sport has benefitted greatly from the screening of popular dance based TV shows such as Strictly Come Dancing and Dancing with the Stars.
Today the sport is widely practiced in 29 countries and the last World Championships in 2010 in Hannover, Germany was a sell-out event months before the competition took place.
Wheelchair user Els-Britt Larsson was one of the pioneers of wheelchair dancing when it originated in her native Sweden in 1968 for recreational and rehabilitation purposes.
From there the sport’s popularity grew and in 1975 the first competition was organised in Vasteras, Sweden involving 30 couples.
Two years later in 1977 Sweden staged the first international competition and several regional and international competitions soon followed.
In 1984 Munich, Germany staged the first Rock’n’Roll European Championship for wheelchair dancers and the following year the Netherlands hosted the first unofficial European Championships in Latin and Standard.
The first World Championships took place in Japan in 1998, the same year the sport came under the governance and management of the International Paralympic Committee.
At the 2006 World Championships in Papendal, the Netherlands, duo-dance was presented for the first time in two Standard and three Latin dances.
The IPC Wheelchair Dance World Championships are held every two years and were last staged in 2010 in Hannover, Germany in front of sell-out crowds.
The surface of the dance floor must be a minimum of 200 square metres with no side of the floor less than 10m in length.
Participants have the option of using electric wheelchairs if they need to.
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