By Marcia Lee
Little did the Bristish World War II Veterans, who participated in the first un-official Paralympics back in 1948, know that they would be starting an international sporting event that would be paralleled to the Olympic Games. In 1960 the first official Paralympics were held with 400 men and women participating in 30 events. To find out more about the sports included in current day Summer Paralympic Games CLICK HERE.
The Paralympics were held directly after the Olympic Games and in the same location beginning in 1976. Since then they have mirrored the scheduling of the Olympic Games – every four years a Summer Paralympics is held, and the same with the Winter games.
This competition is continually growing and changing to incorporate more and more disabled people. Initially only amputees were included, but today the event has participants with disabilities such as hearing impairment, blindness, cerebral palsy and mental illness.
Check out the Paralympics Youtube channel to watch previous competitions and to learn more about the sports! And, don’t forget to watch them on TV or at CBS.com, they begin August 29th and finish on September 9th.