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Paralympics 2012: Who? Where? What? Why?
Rowing, cycling and wheelchair basketball – everyone who is sports-mad will find something interesting when the Paralympic Summer Games will be opened on 29th of August in London. REHACARE.de has summarised the most important information concerning the Paralympics.
The Paralympics will take place in London from August 29th until September 09th in London; © Wim Lanclus/panthermedia.net
Once upon a time …
When in 1948 the first Summer Olympics after the Second World War took place in London, the German neurologist Sir Ludwig Guttmann organised the "Stoke Mandeville Games" near London. Participants of the first wheelchair competitions were war-disabled British soldiers who were treated in the hospital in Stoke Mandeville. Guttmann decided to make these games become international sporty competitions for people with disabilities which amount to the Olympic games. Then in 1960, 400 athletes from 21 nations took part in the first official Paralympics in Rome/Italy. For the first Paralympic Winter Games people met in 1976 in Sweden. In the meantime, the Summer Games and Winter Games take place every two years. In 2014 the Winter Paralympics will be in Russia, in 2016 the next Summer Games will take place in Rio de Janeiro/South America.
There are 20 different sports at the Summer Games; © DBS
Paralympic sports at a glance
So that a sport becomes a paralympic discipline, five world championships must have taken place in advance. At the Summer Games in London the athletes compete in these 20 sports: archery, athletics, boccia, cycling, horse riding, football 5-a-side, football 7-a-side, goalball, judo, powerlifting, rowing, sailing, shooting, swimming, para table tennis, sitting volleyball, wheelchair basketball, wheelchair fencing, wheelchair rugby and wheelchair tennis. At the Winter Olympics the athletes fight for medals in the disciplines alpine skiing, cross-country skiing, ice sledge hockey, wheelchair curling, biathlon.
The fight for the medals can start;
Going for gold
Tobias Graf, Germany, has already won bronze twice at the Paralympics. At the Paralympics in 2012 the upper leg amputee wants to go for gold in cycling. The German track and field athlete Heinrich Popow is one of the ultimate insiders’ tips in the disciplines sprint and long jump. He already won three times bronze and once silver. Will it be enough for gold in 2012? On the international level the South African Oscar Pistorius is one of the biggest favorites. The track and field athlete starts as the first on both sides lower leg-amputated sportsman with the Paralympics as well as in the Olympic Games.
In London there will also be young journalists on site;
Up-and-coming newspeople on site
Investigating on the cinder road, interviewing the sportsmen shortly after their victory – twelve youngsters from Germany will be able to experience all this in the German English team of the Paralympic Post in London. In advance they attended a professional media training in which they have learnt the basics of journalism. The first Paralympic Post appeared at the Paralympic Games in Athens 2004 and the paper has been published during the Paralympics ever since. Students from the German School of Athens wrote articles for the Paralympic Post which was published in the host city and in Germany. The German newspaper “Der Tagesspiegel” (Berlin) supported the project as a media partner from the very beginning.
If you need further information on the Paralympic Summer Games 2012 in London please check out Official London 2012 website.