Para Athletics is a sport encompassing a large range of track and field events for both men and women, of all impairment groups. Involving both individuals and teams, athletics has been at the Paralympic games right from the start, which was Rome 1960. Over the following 20 years more and more impairment groups were added. Today, disabled athletes in over 120 countries compete in athletics, making it the number one most participated Paralympic sport.
In track events, the athlete that completes the event in the fastest time wins. But, in field events the winner is not always the athlete who throws the specified item furthest. Each event will take into account the extent of an athlete’s impairment and their distance thrown. They get points for this total, and the winner is the athlete with the most points.
There are a range of track events at the Paralympics such as sprints, middle and long distance races, relay races. Then there are the field events which are the high jump, long jump, triple jump, discus throw, club throw, shot put and javelin. Not to forget the single road event which is the marathon race, and the combination of events known as the pentathlon.
Paralympic Specific Events
- Club Throw — a wooden club is thrown for maximal distance
Discontinued Para Athletics Events
Here are just some fo the discontinued Paralympic sports or events which were once part of the athletics program. See a larger list of discontinued Paralympic sports and events.
- Precision Javelin — a javelin is thrown from a seated position towards a target on the ground.
- Precision Club Throw — a wooden club is thrown from a seated position towards a target on the ground.
- Football accuracy & Football distance — an event part of athletics at the 1976 Games.
- sprints: 20 metres, 60 metres, 80 metres
- 1000m cross-country (women)
- 10,000 meters
- walk: 1500m, 5000m
- relay: 4 x 40m, 4 x 60m, 4 x 80m, 4 x 200m, 4 × 400m
- Triple jump
- Men's High Jump (Two Foot Take Off)
- Kickball - 1988
- Wheelchair slalom
- Pentathlon — introduced to the Stoke Mandeville Games in 1957 with a combination of events comprising archery, swimming, javelin, shot and club throwing.
- Jason Smyth set a world record for the 100m sprint in the London 2012 Paralympics. Since then he has been known as the Paralympic Usain Bolt, having clocked an impressive 10.46 seconds with only 10% vision.
- List of sports at the Paralympics
- Track and Field at the Olympics
- Complete list of sports
- List of Sports for Athletes with Disabilities
- More about Track and Field Events
- Main Paralympics page