digplanet beta 1: Athena
Share digplanet:

Agriculture

Applied sciences

Arts

Belief

Business

Chronology

Culture

Education

Environment

Geography

Health

History

Humanities

Language

Law

Life

Mathematics

Nature

People

Politics

Science

Society

Technology

For the most recent Winter Games in Sochi, Russia, see 2014 Winter Paralympics.
Paralympic Games
IPC logo (2004).svg
Main topics
Games
Winter Paralympic Games
Olympic torch Sochi2014.jpg
The Paralympic flame in Sochi during the 2014 Winter Paralympics
Games
1976
1980 • 1984 • 1988 • 1992 • 1994 • 1998 • 2002
 2006 • 2010 • 2014 • 2018 • 2022
Sports (details)
Alpine skiing • Biathlon •
Cross‑country skiing • Ice sledge hockey •
Wheelchair curling

The Winter Paralympic Games is an international multi-sport event where athletes with physical disabilities compete. This includes athletes with mobility disabilities, amputations, blindness, and cerebral palsy. The Winter Paralympic Games are held every four years directly following the Winter Olympic Games. The Winter Paralympics are also hosted by the city that hosted the Winter Olympics. The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) oversees the Winter Paralympics. Medals are awarded in each event: with gold medals for first place, silver for second and bronze for third, following the tradition that the Olympic Games started in 1904.

The Winter Paralympics began in 1976 in Örnsköldsvik, Sweden. Those Games were the first Paralympics (Summer or Winter) that featured athletes other than wheelchair athletes. The Games have expanded and grown to be (along with the Summer Games) part of the largest international sporting event after the Olympic Games. Given their expansion the need for a very specific classification system has arisen. This system has also given rise to controversy and opened the door for cheating. Winter Paralympians have also been convicted of steroid use and other forms of cheating unique to Paralympic athletes, which has tainted the integrity of the Games.

History[edit]

The origins of the Winter Paralympics are similar to the Summer Paralympics. Injured soldiers returning from World War II sought sports as an avenue to healing.[1] Organized by Dr. Ludwig Guttmann, sports competitions between British convalescent hospitals began in 1948 and continued until 1960 when a parallel Olympics was held in Rome after the 1960 Summer Olympics. Over 400 wheelchair athletes competed at the 1960 Paralympic Games, which became known as the first Paralympics.[1]

Sepp Zwicknagl, a pioneer of snow sports for disabled athletes, was a double-leg amputee Austrian skier who experimented skiing using prosthetics. His work helped pioneer technological advances for people with disabilities who wished to participate in winter sports.[2] Advances were slow and it was not until 1974 that the first official world ski competition for physically impaired athletes, featuring downhill and a cross-country skiing, was held.[2] The first Winter Paralympics were held in 1976 at Örnsköldsvik, Sweden from February 21–28. Alpine and Nordic skiing for amputees and visually impaired athletes where the main events but ice sledge racing was included as a demonstration event.[2] There were 198 participating athletes from 16 countries,[3] and it was the first time athletes with impairments other than wheelchair athletes were permitted to compete.[4]

Starting in 1988 the Summer Paralympics were held in the same host city as the Summer Olympic Games. This was due to an agreement reached between the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the International Paralympic Committee (IPC). The 1992 Winter Paralympics were the first Winter Games to use the same facilities as the Winter Olympics.[4]

Cheating[edit]

Athletes have cheated by over-representing impairment to have a competitive advantage, and the use of performance enhancing drugs.[5][6] German skier Thomas Oelsner became the first Winter Paralympian to test positive for steroids in 2002. He had won two gold medals in the alpine events but was stripped of his medals.[7] One concern now facing Paralympic officials is the technique of boosting blood pressure, known as autonomic dysreflexia. The increase in blood pressure can improve performance by 15% and is most effective in the endurance sports such as cross-country skiing. To increase blood pressure athletes will deliberately cause trauma to limbs below a spinal injury. This trauma can include breaking bones, strapping extremities in too tightly and using high-pressured compression stockings. The injury is painless to the athlete but affects the body and impacts the athlete's blood pressure, as can techniques like allowing the bladder to overfill.[8]

Disability categories[edit]

The IPC has established six disability categories applying to both the Summer and Winter Paralympics. Athletes with one of these physical disabilities are able to compete in the Paralympics though not every sport can allow for every disability category.[9]

Classifications[edit]

Paralympian Andy Soule in the 12.5 km cross-country race at the 2010 Winter Olympics

Within the six disability categories the athletes still need to be divided according to their level of impairment. The classification systems differ from sport to sport. The systems are designed to open up Paralympic sports to as many athletes as possible, who can participate in fair competitions against athletes with similar levels of ability. The closest equivalents in able-bodied competitions are age classifications in junior sports, and weight divisions in wrestling, boxing, and weightlifting. Classifications vary in accordance with the different skills required to perform the sport. The biggest challenge in the classification system is how to account for the wide variety and severity of disabilities. As a result there will always be a range of impairment within a classification.[10] What follows is a list of the Winter Paralympic sports and a general description of how they are classified.

Alpine skiing: There are two events in alpine skiing: slalom and giant slalom. Alpine skiing accommodates athletes with the following physical limitations: spinal injury, Cerebral Palsy, amputation, Les Autres and blindness/visual impairment. There are eleven classifications, seven for standing athletes, three for sitting athletes, and three for visually impaired athletes. The divisions are defined by the degree of the athletes' function and the need for assistive equipment (prosthesis, ski poles, etc.). [11] Snowboard Cross is technically now included in this category, though competition will take place with only limited classifications (see below).

Biathlon: Biathlon is a combination of cross-country skiing with target shooting. It requires physical stamina and accurate shooting. The events are open to athletes with physical disabilities and visual impairments. There are fifteen classes in which athletes will be placed depending on their level of function. Twelve divisions are for athletes with a physical impairment and three divisions are for athletes with a visual impairment. The athletes compete together and their finishing times are entered into a formula with their disability class to determine the athletes' over all finish order. Visually impaired athletes are able to compete through the use of acoustic signals. The signal intensity varies depending upon whether or not the athlete is on target.[12]

Cross-country skiing: Cross-country skiing, also known as Nordic skiing is open to athletes with Cerebral Palsy, amputations, the need for a wheelchair, visual impairment and intellectual impairment. There are fifteen classifications, three for visually impaired athletes, nine for standing athletes and three for seated athletes. The divisions are determined in a similar fashion to alpine skiing with attention given to the athletes' level of function and need for assistive devices.[13]

Ice sledge hockey game at the 2010 Winter Paralympics

Ice Sledge Hockey: Ice sledge hockey is open only to male competitors with a physical disability in the lower part of their body. The game is played using international hockey rules with some modifications. Athletes sit on sledges with two blades that allow the puck to go beneath the sledge. They also use two sticks, which have a spike-end for pushing and a blade-end for shooting. The athletes are classified into three groups: group 1 is for athletes with no sitting balance or with major impairment in both upper and lower limbs, group 2 is for athletes with some sitting balance and moderate impairment in their extremities and athletes in group 3 have good balance and mild impairment in their upper and lower limbs.[14]

Wheelchair curling: Wheelchair curling is a coed team event for athletes with permanent lower limb disabilities that require them to use a wheelchair in their daily lives. Athletes with Cerebral Palsy or Multiple Sclerosis can also play if they use a wheelchair. Delivery of the stone can be by hand release or the use of a pole. There are no classifications in this event except the requirement that all athletes participating must have need for a wheelchair for daily mobility.[15]

Para-snowboarding: On 2 May 2012, the International Paralympic Committee officially sanctioned "para-snowboarding" (commonly known as adaptive snowboarding) as a medal event in the 2014 Winter Paralympic Games under Alpine Skiing. There will be men's and women's standing snowboard-cross competitions.[16] The IPC currently recognizes two broader sport classes, one for competitors with lower-limb impairments and one for those with upper-limb impairments. Visually impaired classes are not currently recognized and the sport's debut in the 2014 Sochi Paralympics will feature events for only athletes with lower-limb impairments, who will be permitted to wear a prosthesis. The events will be run in a time trial format (one rider on course at a time), and results within each broad class calculated without factors that adjust raw times based on disability classification (for example, a hypothetical athlete with a single above-knee amputation will not receive any adjustment to his or her start-to-finish time, even though the lack of a knee and functional quadriceps in one leg can result in an impairment much greater than a hypothetical athlete with a single below-knee amputation but two functional quadriceps). However, as the sport develops, the classes will be expanded and/or refined in the future.[17]

List of Paralympic sports[edit]

Main article: Paralympic sports

A number of different sports have been part of the Paralympic program at one point or another.

      This color indicates a discontinued sport

Sport Years
Alpine skiing all
Ice sledge hockey since 1994
Ice sledge racing 1980–1988, 1994–1998
Nordic skiing - biathlon since 1988
Nordic cross-country skiing all
Para-snowboarding since 2014
Wheelchair curling since 2006

Winter Games[edit]

Winter Paralympic Games[18]
Year Games Host City Country
1976 Winter Paralympics I Örnsköldsvik Sweden Sweden
1980 Winter Paralympics II Geilo Norway Norway
1984 Winter Paralympics III Innsbruck Austria Austria
1988 Winter Paralympics IV Innsbruck Austria Austria
1992 Winter Paralympics V TignesAlbertville France France
1994 Winter Paralympics VI Lillehammer Norway Norway
1998 Winter Paralympics VII Nagano Japan Japan
2002 Winter Paralympics VIII Salt Lake City United States United States
2006 Winter Paralympics IX Turin Italy Italy
2010 Winter Paralympics X Vancouver Canada Canada
2014 Winter Paralympics XI Sochi Russia Russia
2018 Winter Paralympics XII Pyeongchang South Korea South Korea

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "History of the Paralympics". BBC Sport. 2008-09-04. Retrieved 2010-04-21. 
  2. ^ a b c "Örnsköldsvik 1976". International Paralympic Committee. Retrieved 2010-04-14. 
  3. ^ "Results search". International Paralympic Committee. Retrieved 2010-04-14. 
  4. ^ a b "History of the Paralympic Games". The Government of Canada. Retrieved 2010-04-14. 
  5. ^ Slot, Owen (2001-02-03). "Cheating shame of Paralympics". The Daily Telegraph (London: Telegraph Media Group). Retrieved 2010-04-07. 
  6. ^ Grey-Thompson, Tanni (2008-09-11). "Cheating does happen in the Paralympics". The Daily Telegraph (London: Telegraph Media Group). Retrieved 2010-04-07. 
  7. ^ Maffly, Bryan (2002-03-13). "Skier Fails Drug Test". Salt Lake 2002 Paralympics. Retrieved 2010-04-07. 
  8. ^ "Paralympic athletes who harm themselves to perform better". BBC News Magazine (BBC). 2012-08-22. Retrieved 2014-02-12. 
  9. ^ a b "Making sense of the categories". BBC Sport. 2000-10-06. Retrieved 2010-04-07. 
  10. ^ "Athlete Classification". Australian Paralympic Committee. Retrieved 2010-06-01. 
  11. ^ "Alpine Skiing". Australian Paralympic Committee. Retrieved 2010-06-01. 
  12. ^ "Biathlon". Australian Paralympic Committee. Retrieved 2010-06-01. 
  13. ^ "Classification information sheet Nordic Skiing". Australian Paralympic Committee. Retrieved 2010-06-01. 
  14. ^ "Ice Sledge Hockey". Australian Paralympic Committee. Retrieved 2010-06-01. 
  15. ^ "Wheelchair curling". Australian Paralympic Committee. Retrieved 2010-06-01. 
  16. ^ "Para-Snowboard Included in Sochi 2014 Paralympic Winter Games | IPC". Paralympic.org. 2012-05-28. Retrieved 2013-01-31. 
  17. ^ http://www.paralympic.org/AlpineSkiing/RulesandRegulations/Classification
  18. ^ "Past Games". International Paralympic Committee. Retrieved 2010-04-07. 

External links[edit]


Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Winter_Paralympic_Games — Please support Wikipedia.
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia. A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia.

1156 news items

ParaSport News

ParaSport News
Wed, 28 Jan 2015 10:33:45 -0800

Thiessen is another returning member from Canada's gold medal winning 2014 Winter Paralympic Games team. From Sanford, Manitoba, he first made the team in 2012 and has been the only member of the team from his province for a while. He was part of ...
 
Sawyer County Record
Fri, 23 Jan 2015 08:03:30 -0800

CABLE—Four members of Team USA and their coach talked about competing in their home country Thursday on the eve of the 2015 International Paralympics Committee (IPC) Nordic Skiing World Championships on the Telemark trails. The team held a ...
 
Around the Rings (subscription)
Fri, 23 Jan 2015 09:03:45 -0800

US teammates Oksana Masters and Tatyana McFadden, both medallists at their first Winter Paralympic Games in Sochi, will be aiming to delight the home crowds in the women's cross-country sitting events. Petushkov's teammate Nikolay Polukhin headlines ...

India.com

India.com
Wed, 31 Dec 2014 23:00:18 -0800

The event was held to bring enthusiastic citizens together to demonstrate their craving for 2022 Olympic Winter Games and Winter Paralympic Games, to highlight the fascination of Beijing in winter, and voice aspirations of billions of Chinese people to ...
 
SourceWire (press release)
Mon, 26 Jan 2015 07:45:00 -0800

He fronted the live ten day coverage of The Winter Paralympic Games on Channel Four. Documentary work includes This World for BBC2 exploring the clothing industry in Ghana, a Dispatches on Stop and Search, an investigation into the growth of West ...

AmeriForce Publishing, Inc. (blog)

AmeriForce Publishing, Inc. (blog)
Thu, 15 Jan 2015 10:56:15 -0800

On his sit-ski, Price represented Team USA at the Winter Paralympic Games last held in Socchi, Russia. Price said he didn't expect to make the Paralympic team. “It really surprised me,” he said. “I was just going out there to learn as much as I could ...

Okanagan Life Magazine

Okanagan Life Magazine
Thu, 15 Jan 2015 12:26:15 -0800

... lead rocks for Team Canada, was the alternate for the Canadian teams that won gold at the most recent World Wheelchair Championship, in 2013 in Sochi, Russia, and also captured gold in the same position at the 2014 Winter Paralympic Games in Sochi.
 
Alabama Public Radio
Mon, 19 Jan 2015 08:22:55 -0800

TOMORROW, A LITTLE PIECE OF SOCHI RUSSIA COMES TO BIRMINGHAM. THE WINTER PARALYMPIC GAMES ARE STARTING UP, AND FANS WILL GATHER TO WATCH, AND CHEER, AND DREAM OF THE UPCOMING SUMMER GAMES IN RIO.
Loading

Oops, we seem to be having trouble contacting Twitter

Support Wikipedia

A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia. Please add your support for Wikipedia!

Searchlight Group

Digplanet also receives support from Searchlight Group. Visit Searchlight