Special Olympics Winter Games

Since 1968 the Special Olympics Winter Games have been taking place at selected locations around the world. They take place every two years which is different from the traditional Winter Olympic Games which only take place every four years. While there are less people in the Special Olympics Winter Games than the regular Olympics, the amount of effort and training the participants put into it is the same.

All participants in the Special Olympic Winter Games must be at least 8 years of age. There is no limit for hold old a person is before they can no longer be a part of the Special Olympic Winter Games. This program is designed to help these individuals stay healthy by getting plenty of exercise and to help them develop positive self esteem.

Each participant in the Special Olympic Winter Games is taught the essentials of their particular sport. They have to abide by the Code of Conduct which mandates that they are respectful of themselves and others. They have to use effective communication skills that dont include talking down to others or abusive language. They have to agree to be dedicated to the training program and to work to the very best of their abilities.

As the number of participants in the Special Olympics grows more people are needed to assist them. It is very common for older people who has previously participated in the Special Olympic Winter Games to move into helping to train others. This allows them to continue being a vital part of this organization.

They also have to provide written verification from professionals verifying that they do have the symptoms of an intellectual disability, delays with their cognitive abilities, or a developmental disability. As a result of one or more of these issues the person must experience challenges due to difficulties with their development, ability to learn, or their ability to adapt to the situation.

The division that a participant will be in is determined by an overall score based on a serious of factors. Their individual abilities are taken into consideration, their age, and their gender. Various types of disabilities will affect their overall score so that they are placed in the right division to offer them a challenge but to also take their personal needs into consideration.

The various sporting events available for the Special Olympic Winter Games include Alpine skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, cross country skiing, figure skating, and ice hockey. The rules used in the games are different than those for the traditional Winter Olympic Games. The rules of the Special Olympics version are determined by the sponsors, coaches, and families of those with the disabilities. They are then approved or denied by the International Sports Federations and National Governing Bodies.

Each year in January the current rules are reviewed and any submissions for changes are reviewed. This process ensures the rules in place are offering a safe and fun environment for those participating in the Special Olympics Winter Games to enjoy.

The 2007 Special Olympics Winter Games have just concluded in Shanghi, China. Winter Games and the number of people for 2009 is anticipated to be even higher. Boise, Idaho in the United States has been selected to host the 2009 games. The Special Olympics continues to work with the help of volunteers to offer training to more than 2 million people with disabilities in more than 165 countries.

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