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The Paralympics

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judy lin

on 29 October 2012

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Transcript of The Paralympics

The Paralympics In 1948, the concept for the Paralympic Games was devised by Sir Ludwig Guttmann, an English brain surgeon who provided athletic sports for people in wheelchairs. Under Guttman’s guidance, radical changes and the methods of treating people with injuries were included. Guttman recognized the value of recreation and sport as a catalyst for therapy and as a means to prevent boredom. Some of the reasons to evolve during this period after World War II which significantly influenced with the development of sport for people with rapid advances in medical technology and care, which turned into better opportunities for survival from injury or illness; the increased need to improve the quality of life of the thousands of military and civilian casualties who were left with permanent disabilities, and the development of specialist spinal injuries unit. The Games became the International Stoke Mandeville Games (ISMG) in 1952 when a small team of Dutch war veterans travelled to England to compete against the British athletes. Sir Ludwig Guttmann organised the first International Wheelchair Games in 1948,which was held at Stoke Mandeville Hospital in Aylesbury, England. Only just with a few athletes, the events were more about enhancing the quality of life for people with spinal cord injuries than about competition. A quick attempt to connect the Olympic and Paralympic Games were not made until 1960, when the first Paralympic Games were held in Rome with 400 athletes from 23 countries participating in the games. Athletes competed in archery, basketball, fencing, javelin, shotput and three swimming events. Since then, the Olympic and Paralympic Games have lead an existence being held in the same country or city whenever possible. Sir Ludwig Guttmann organised the first International Wheelchair Games in 1948,which was held at Stoke Mandeville Hospital in Aylesbury, England. Only just with a few athletes, the events were more about enhancing the quality of life for people with spinal cord injuries than about competition. A quick attempt to connect the Olympic and Paralympic Games were not made until 1960, when the first Paralympic Games were held in Rome with 400 athletes from 23 countries participating in the games. Athletes competed in archery, basketball, fencing, javelin, shotput and three swimming events. Since then, the Olympic and Paralympic Games have lead an existence being held in the same country or city whenever possible. Governed by the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) and recognized by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the Paralympic Games has experienced phenomenal growth. At the Seoul Paralympic Games in 1988, television rights were sold and a worldwide audience was able to watch the Games and witness the commitment and prowess of the Paralympic competitors. Today, the Paralympics is one of the largest events in the world, eclipsing in size with 146 nations sending 3,951 athletes to compete at the Paralympic Games, including 179 athletes from Australia making it the second largest sporting event after the Olympic Games. Guttman died in 1980, but his vision for athletes with a disability continues. The Paralympics now shows the world’s elite athletes with a disability in a rigorous sporting competition where they thrill spectators, young to old, who fill the stadiums and amaze a potential international television audience of millions. The Paralympic Games are a multi-sport event for athletes with physical, mental and sensorial disabilities. This includes mobility disabilities, amputees, visual disabilities and those with cerebral palsy. Jacqueline Freney
In the lead up to her first Paralympics in Beijing in 2008, Jacqueline had hoped to medal. She certainly did not disappoint, remarkably winning three bronze medals at the age of 16. The Beijing Games were the best experience of Jacqueline’s life and she hopes to use this as a stepping stone to further honours at London 2012. As the current world record holder in the 100m, 200m and 400m freestyle events in the S7 classification, Jacqueline Freney enters London 2012 in the best form of her career. Since her Paralympic debut, Jacqueline has continued to improve and impress. She won two silver medals at the 2010 World Championships - in the 100m and 400m freestyle – and the good form continued through a successful 2011 season, with Jacqueline taking home three silver and one bronze from the 2011 Para Pan Pacific Championships. Her accolades and achievements resulted in Jacqueline winning the 2012 Ballina Shire Sportsperson of the Year award on Australia Day, as well as the NSW Young Athlete with a Disability Award. Born with cerebral palsy diplegia, restricting the movement of her legs and body, Jacqueline followed in the footsteps of her swimming family and set herself the goal that she would one day become a competitive swimmer. Expertly coached by her father Michael, Jacqueline believes her dad and grandfather Peter have been the most influential people in her swimming career. Hailing from Skenners Head on the North Coast of NSW, Jacqueline did not take long to display her talent in the water, starring in her first international competition at the 2007 US Paralympic Championships. Jacqueline performed exceedingly well against a strong international field, winning five gold medals. By Judy Lin
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