Para archery has played role in Paralympic history since the very beginning. Like many other Paralympic sports, it was first used as a means of rehabilitation. It became a competitive sport and eventually a very high-level discipline, as is the case today at the Paralympic Games.
Men and women with a physical disability can compete standing or in a wheelchair. There are three categories, two for wheelchair and one for standing athletes. Events include recurve and compound bows, as well as mixed teams. Self-control, concentration and precision are essential to success in these competitions, where elimination rounds whip up excitement.
Brief overview of the rules
Archers compete in two categories at the Paralympic Games:
W1: for athletes competing in wheelchairs whose arms demonstrate some degree of loss of muscle strength, co-ordination or range of movement.
Open: archers in this category can compete in a wheelchair, standing up or leaning on a stool. They have either extremely limited movement in their trunk and limbs with normal arm function or balance issues.
Competitions include a ranking round where the archers shoot 72 arrows (12 ‘ends’ of six arrows each) over distances of 50m or 70m. Each archer has 4 minutes to shoot their six arrows. After this round they go head to head in elimination rounds where archers using recurve bows or those competing in the WA category shoot three arrows in five ends, while archers using conventional bows shoot five arrows in three to five ends.
Paraplegia, quadriplegia and equivalent, amputation and equivalent, cerebral palsy and equivalent.
World Archery : www.archery.org
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