Alpine Skiing | Archery | Athletics | Boccia | Canoe Kayak | Cross Country Skiing | Equestrian
Goal Ball | Rowing | Sailing | Sledge Hockey | Swimming | Table Tennis | Tandem
Wheelchair Basketball | Wheelchair Curling | Wheelchair Rugby | Wheelchair Tennis
Para-alpine skiing demands extreme agility, strength, and speed, with racers reaching speeds of up to 100km/hour. Adaptive alpine skiing is currently practiced in more than 40 countries; the sport continues to grow in popularity and accessibility.
At the first Paralympic Winter Games in Örnsköldsvik, Sweden, in 1976, the Slalom and Giant Slalom were the only two para-alpine events. Today, there are five para-alpine events at the Paralympic Games.
For more information: Lorraine Burch, Alpine Ski Nova Scotia
firstname.lastname@example.org, (902) 425-5450 ext. 349.
Archery for persons with a physical disability began as an activity for rehabilitation and leisure. The first archery competition was held at the Stoke Mandeville Hospital in 1948. Since then, the sport has developed rapidly. New technology for bows, changes in the rules and increasing interest, have made the sport more exciting and accessible.
Athletes with physical disabilities can compete either standing or in wheelchairs in men's and women's categories. The objective of the sport is to shoot arrows accurately at a target marked with ten concentric rings. A hit in the centre ring (bull’s eye) scores ten points, with the following zones decreasing in point value until the outer ring, which is worth one point.
For more information: Allan Collie, NSSAC
A27collie73@eastlink.ca, (902) 396-5937
Athletics offers a wide range of competitions and the largest number of events. Athletics includes:
- Track events: Sprint (100m, 200m, 400m), Middle Distance (800m, 1500m), Long Distance (5,000m, 10,000m), and Relay races (4x100m, 4x400m)
- Road event: Marathon
- Jumping events: High Jump, Long Jump, and Triple Jump
- Throwing events: Discus, Shot Put, and Javelin
- Combined events: Pentathlon (track and road events, jumping events, and throwing events, depending on the athletes' classification)
The rules of Paralympic track and field are almost identical to those of its Olympic counterparts. Allowances are made to accommodate certain disabilities (for example, the blind and more severely visually impaired runners often compete with guide runners attached to them with a tether at the wrist).
For more information: Anitra Stevens, Athletics Nova Scotia
email@example.com, (902) 425-5450 ext. 339.
Strategically similar to lawn bowling, Boccia is played indoors on a flat, smooth surface. The objective is to throw, kick, or use an assistive device to propel leather balls (six per competitor) as close as possible to a white target ball (called the “jack”) on a long, narrow field of play. A match has four ends. At the end of the game players receive 1 point for each ball closer to the “jack” than their opponent’.
For more information: Amanda McCulloch (Head Coach) firstname.lastname@example.org
CanoeKayak PaddleALL / Paracanoe is a project of CanoeKayak Canada, introduced in 2006-07. It is a program aimed at promoting individuals with disabilities to participate in the sport of CanoeKayak. Many successful programs are in place across Canada, including local Nova Scotia clubs. The positive impact of these programs at individual clubs propelled CanoeKayak Canada in 2007 to begin a national initiative to support national standards in promotion, recruitment, coaching and competition. The program aims to give our member Clubs the resources to meet the paddling needs of their local communities all across Canada.
For more information: Tracy White, General Manager, Atlantic Division, CanoeKayak Canada
email@example.com, (902) 466-9925.
Cross Country Skiing
Paralympic athletes cross-country ski on tracks ranging from 2.5km to 20km, depending on the event. They use an interval start system, as well as the Nordic Percentage System, to equalize across categories. Paralympic cross-country skiing also has a relay event where each skier completes one leg of the race. Relay teams may be made up of individuals in different classification categories.
For more information: Sarah Wood, Cross Country Ski Nova Scotia
firstname.lastname@example.org, (902) 425-5450 ext. 316.
Equestrian is a multi-disability sport. It is a unique competition in that men and women compete on the same terms and both horse and rider are declared medal winners. All riders are grouped according to their functional profiles and they are judged on their ability to control and manoeuvre the horses. Riders unable to give signals to the horse with their legs are required to develop creative ways to communicate with the horse such as utilising a dressage whip or other aid.
For more information: Heather Myrer, Nova Scotia Equestrian Federation
email@example.com, (902) 425-5450 ext. 333.
Paralympic goalball is exclusive to athletes with visual impairments. Goalball is an intensely unique spectator sport given the venue atmosphere and extreme concentration and silence required by the athletes.
Goalball is a team sport for both men and women. Each team is comprised of six players with no more than three players per team (1 centre and 2 wingers) permitted on the court at any one time. The objective of the games is to roll the ball into the opponent's goal while the opposing players try to block the ball with their bodies. Goals are scored by rolling a ball (called a goalball) toward the opposing team’s goal. Goals span the width of the court at each end. The team with the most goals wins.
For more information: Jennifer MacNeil Blind Sports Nova Scotia
The basic techniques of adaptive rowing are the same as rowing for the able-bodied. ‘Adaptive’ simply refers to the adaptation of equipment to the user to practice the sport.
Adaptive rowing includes rowing or sculling for male and female athletes with a disability who meet the criteria set out in the adaptive rowing classification regulations.
For more information: Patrick Thompson, Row Nova Scotia
firstname.lastname@example.org, (902) 425-5450 ext. 357.
In Paralympic Sailing, athletes compete in one of three non-gender specific events: single-person keelboat (2.4mR), two-person keelboat, and, three-person keelboat (Sonar).
Races consist of nine separate runs. Final placings are determined by the accumulation of points scored in each race. The winning team is the one that scores the lowest total points. In Paralympic sailing, sailors race under the fleet racing format, meaning all yachts race the course at the same time.
For more information: Frank Denis, Sail Nova Scotia
email@example.com, (902) 425-5450 ext. 312.
Sledge hockey is the Paralympic version of ice hockey. It is fast-paced, highly physical, and played by athletes with a physical disability in the lower part of the body. Sledge hockey is an extremely exciting game for players and spectators and is currently played in 15 countries. To date, Canada, Norway, the USA, and Sweden have dominated international competitions, although strength is growing among other national teams.
For more information: Darren Cossar, Hockey Nova Scotia
firstname.lastname@example.org, (902) 454-9400.
Swimming is one of the longest standing sports for athletes with a disability. World records of visually impaired swimmers closely match those of their able-bodied peers. Next to athletics, swimming attracts the largest number of competitors for any sport at the Paralympics. Swimming has been part of the Paralympics since the first games in Rome in 1960. Today, men and women with physical disabilities or blindness/visual impairment compete in swimming events in more than 80 countries worldwide.
For more information: Bette El-Hawary, Swim Nova Scotia
email@example.com, (902) 425-5450 ext. 314.
Table tennis appeared at the first games in Rome in 1960, making it one of the original Paralympic sports. However, standing players classified as amputees and les autres have only been included since the 1976 Toronto Games, and athletes with cerebral palsy only since 1980. The objective of table tennis is to hit the ball over a net and into the opponent's table area so that he/she is unable to hit a successful return. Men and women compete individually (one against one), in doubles, and in team events.
For more information: John MacPherson, Nova Scotia Table Tennis Association
firstname.lastname@example.org, (902) 434-6881.
Disabled cycling competitions were first developed in the early 1980s by visually impaired cyclists using tandem bicycles. Cycling was introduced into the Paralympic programme at the 1984 New York/Mandeville Games for athletes with cerebral palsy. The expanded Paralympic programme, which includes the modern-day classifications, didn't appear until the Barcelona Games in 1992. Handcycling (for wheelchair users) made its debut as a medal event at the 2004 Paralympic Games in Athens.
Prior to the 1992 Paralympic Games, the competitions for each of the disability groups competing (visually impaired, cerebral palsy and wheelchair users) were held separately. Today, both track and road races include athletes in all three disability groups.
For more information: Jennifer MacNeil Blind Sports Nova Scotia
Not surprisingly, wheelchair basketball is one of the most popular spectator sports at the Paralympics. It is a fast-paced team game that attracts competitive athletes with physical disabilities that prevent them from running, jumping, and pivoting. Not all athletes who play wheelchair basketball require the use of a wheelchair for daily life.
Open to male and female athletes, wheelchair basketball requires two teams to play. Each team has twelve players with just five on court during playtime. The objective of each team is to score more points than the opposing team. Points are given for scoring goals by shooting the basketball into the opposing team’s basket. A goal scores from one to three points . Teams actively try to prevent the opposing team from making goals. The team with the most points at the end of the game wins.
For more information: Dave Wagg, Basketball Nova Scotia
email@example.com, (902) 425-5450 ext. 348.
The objective of wheelchair curling is to get the 19.1 kilogram stone as close to the centre ring as possible. Two co-ed teams play at a time, each having four members. A game consists of eight ends. During an end, teams alternate turns with each player “throwing,” in fact sliding, two rocks toward the rings. In wheelchair curling there is no sweeping, which means each throw has to be even more precise. The player’s wheelchair must be stationary during the throw and the stones can be thrown by hand or given an initial push with a cue.
For more information: Jeremiah Anderson, Nova Scotia Curling Association
firstname.lastname@example.org, (902) 425-5450 ext. 345.
Wheelchair rugby is a very fast-paced, competitive game, and an exciting spectator sport. The objective is to score more goals than the opposing team. Goals are scored by players crossing the opponent’s goal line while in possession of the ball. Players carry, dribble, or pass the ball while moving toward the opponents’ goal area. The ball must be dribbled or passed at least once every ten seconds. A goal is scored when a player in control of the ball touches their opponent’s goal line with two wheels. Contact between wheelchairs is permitted and can be integral to the game. Players frequently collide as they try to stop opponents and take control of the ball. Some forms of more dangerous contact are not permitted and can result in penalties.
For more information: Anna Carew Rugby Nova Scotia
email@example.com, (902) 425-5450 ext. 341.
Tennis is a sport played between two players (singles) or between two teams of two players each (doubles). Each player uses a strung racquet to hit the tennis ball (a hollow rubber ball covered with felt) over a net into the opponent's court. Wheelchair tennis is played on a standard tennis court and has only one exception to able-bodied tennis rules: the ball is allowed to bounce two times as long as the first bounce is within court boundaries. Players must return the ball before its third bounce. In this sport, the wheelchair is considered part of the body; therefore, all rules that apply to a player's body also apply to the wheelchairs.
For more information: Roger Keating, Tennis Nova Scotia
firstname.lastname@example.org, (902) 425-5450 ext. 318.