Interesting facts about Paralympics

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Paralympics 2021, commonly known as Tokyo 2020 main events, ends on September 5. The events have attracted 179 outstanding athletes. 

The games have gained traction across the world after the Rio 2016 events which recorded over 4.1 billion views, according to IPC. Here are interesting facts you may have not heard about the Paralympics.

Paralympics Started at a UK hospital

As much as we know the Olympics started in Athens, Greece 1896, Paralympics come in after World War II as healthy exercise for disabled veterans. Founded by Sir Ludwig Guttmann at a spinal injuries Centre in Stoke Mandeville Hospital, Buckinghamshire UK Paralympics turned into a national event, inspiring the international community and later caught the eye of the Olympic Games committee. The committee held the first Paralympic Games in Rome Italy, in 1960.

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Paralympic Games were first played by returning war vets with spinal injury 

Dr. Guttman introduced sporting activities –wheelchair competitions – for the returning war vets as an exercise to speed up their recovery from spinal injuries. 

Paralympics means alongside Olympics

Out of thought for many people, Paralympics comes from the Greek preposition “para” meaning “alongside” –thus the denoted meaning, “alongside Olympics”. The events are simply the second Olympics for disabled athletes.

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Meaning of Paralympics symbol

The Paralympics has three Agitos symbols consisting of three colours; red, blue, and green. Agitos means ‘I move’ in Latin and it symbolises the athletes ‘spirit in motion. The symbol represents the spirit of being an athlete. The Olympics Olympics symbol represents the world coming together.

Gold medals are not made of 100% gold

Gold medals awarded to athletes are silver medals plated with gold. Nestlé Cereals writes, “An interesting Paralympic fact is that for the 2021 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games, each medal has been moulded entirely from metal extracted from recycled consumer electronics, marking the first time when the public has been proactively involved in donating electronic devices used to make the Olympic and Paralympic medals.”

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