first Games for athletes with a disability were held in 1948 in Stoke Mandeville,
England. On the day of the Opening Ceremony of the 1948 Olympic Games in London, the
Stoke Mandeville Games were launched and the first competition for wheelchair athletes
Four years later, athletes from the Netherlands joined the Games; thus the
international movement, now known as the Paralympic movement, was born.
Olympic style Games for athletes with a disability were organised for the first time in
Rome in 1960, immediately after the Olympic Games. They are considered the first
Paralympic Games. About 400 athletes from 23 countries competed in 8 sports, 6 of which
are still included in the Paralympic Competition Programme (Archery,
Swimming, Fencing, Basketball,
tennis and Athletics).
Since then Paralympic Games have been organised every four years. The Paralympic Games
have always been held in the same year as the Olympic Games.
disability groups were added in Toronto, Canada in 1976 and the idea was conceived of
merging together different disability groups for international sport competitions. In
the same year, the first Paralympic Winter Games took place in Sweden.
In 1988, the Seoul Paralympic Summer Games marked a significant change, as both Olympic
and Paralympic Games were held at the same venues. Since then the Paralympic Games have
always taken place at the same venues as the Olympic Games.
Since 1960, eleven (13) Paralympic Summer and seven
(8) Paralympic Winter Games have
The Paralympic Games have evolved into a major sports event, second only to the Olympic
||400 athletes from
||390 athletes from
||Tel Aviv, Israel
||750 athletes from
||1000 athletes from
from 42 countries
||2500 athletes from
New York, USA
from 42 countries
||3053 athletes from
from 82 countries
||3195 athletes from
from 123 countries
de Janeiro, Brazil