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1. Special Olympics        

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1. Paralympic Games
In 1948, Sir Ludwig Guttmann organized a sports competition involving World War II veterans with a spinal cord injury in Stoke Mandeville, England. Four years later, competitors from Holland joined the games and the international movement, now known as the Paralympics, was born. Olympic style games for athletes with a disability were organized for the first time in Rome in 1960. In Toronto in 1976, other disability groups were added and the idea of merging together different disability groups for international sport competitions was born. In the same year, the first Paralympic Winter Games took place in Sweden.       [ New Window ]
2. Wheelchair Sports USA
Founded in 1956 as the National Wheelchair Athletic Association, the name of the organization was changed in 1994 to Wheelchair Sports, USA, to better reflect the organization's mission and goals. Europe's first organized wheelchair sports program was introduced in 1948 by well-known neurosurgeon, Dr. Ludwig Guttman, founder of the Spinal Injury Center in Stoke-Mandeville, England. The first Stoke-Mandeville Games included only a handful of participants (26), and few events (shotput, javelin, club throw, and archery), but growth in both the number of events and participants came quickly. In 1952, a team from the Netherlands was invited to compete with the British team. This was the first International Stoke-Mandeville Games, an event that has been held annually ever since.       [ New Window ]

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