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Difference between the Olympics and Paralympics

Difference between the Olympics and Paralympics

When you hear Olympics, what comes to mind? Most likely images of able-bodied athletes competing in a wide range of sports. But the Paralympics are another major international event that happens right after the Olympics – and it’s all about disability sports. So what’s the difference between the two? And why should we care? Let’s take a closer look.

What are the Olympics?

The Olympics are a series of international sporting competitions that take place every four years. The first Olympics were held in ancient Greece, and the games were originally restricted to athletes from Greek city-states. However, the Olympics quickly became a popular event, and by the time of the Roman Empire, the games were open to athletes from all over the world. The modern Olympics were launched in 1896, and since that time, the games have been held every four years with the exception of the years during the two World Wars. The Olympics are now the largest sporting event in the world, with athletes competing in a wide range of disciplines.

What are the Paralympics?

  • Paralympics are a Paralympic Games that are competed by disabled athletes. It involves different sports in which Paralympians compete. The Paralympics has its origins in the Stoke Mandeville Games, which were first held in 1948.
  • The Paralympics were created to provide an opportunity for war veterans with disabilities to participate in sports. The first official Paralympic Games were held in Rome in 1960. Since then, the Paralympics have been held every four years, with Paralympians competing in Paralympic sports.
  • There are currently 25 Paralympic sports in the Paralympic program. The most popular Paralympic sport is wheelchair basketball, which was first introduced at the 1976 Paralympic Games. Other popular Paralympic sports include wheelchair rugby, wheelchair tennis, and athletics.

Difference between the Olympics and Paralympics

The Olympics and Paralympics are two of the biggest sporting events in the world. Both feature athletes from all over the globe competing at the highest level in a variety of sports. However, there are some key differences between the two events.

  • The most obvious difference is that the Olympics features able-bodied athletes, while the Paralympics includes athletes with a range of physical impairments.
  • As a result, the Paralympics often features adapted versions of traditional Olympic sports.
  • Another key difference is that the Olympics is a huge commercial event, with multi-million-pound sponsorship deals and massive television coverage.
  • In contrast, the Paralympics is far less commercialized and relies heavily on donations and volunteer support.
  • This different funding model means that the Paralympics often doesn’t receive the same level of media coverage as the Olympics.

Despite these differences, both the Olympics and the Paralympics are fantastic events that showcase the best of human achievement.


The Paralympics are a time to celebrate the human spirit in all its forms. Athletes who participate in the Paralympics have overcome incredible obstacles and demonstrated strength, courage, and perseverance. They are an inspiration to us all. This year’s Paralympic games were no exception, with some truly awe-inspiring moments.

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