Finding the Next Generation of Paralympic Champions
The Canadian Paralympic Committee has kicked off their search for future athletes with Paralympian Search events in Victoria (May 26) and Montreal (June 9).
Paralympian Search is a one-day Para athlete identification event designed to uncover athletes with Paralympic potential and provide them with the high-performance sport resources they need to achieve their podium dreams.
Participants are put through a set of basic physical tests conducted by national team coaches and other experts. During this event, participants also got to meet current Paralympic athletes and alumni from various sports who shared their experiences and interacted with those on-site.
The event is open to participants 14 years of age and up with a physical disability or visual impairment, with or without previous sport experience. The event also welcomes current or former athletes from all levels aiming to transfer into a new Paralympic sport or discover a new sport that can complement their main discipline.
‘’What’s great about this event is that it encompasses all of the Paralympic sports,’’ said Allison Huether, a 35-year-old hospital worker who drove from Toronto to attend the event in Montreal. “I like the fact they have knowledgeable staff here for each of the sports who can help you.’’
Of course, the most astute observers at Paralympian Search were the national team coaches who all agreed there was a high quality of athletic talent on display at both events.
‘’It’s a great opportunity for us to come out to meet some people, scout some talent and get some opportunities to get people out in sport,’’ said Marc Creamer, Para canoe national coach and manager for Canoe Kayak Canada. ‘’For us in paddling we are looking at big upper body strength and people who want to be engaged and achieve the next level.’’
Following the Paralympian Search, participants may be selected for a local club, provincial or national development program designed to propel athletes from their developmental stages to a Paralympic podium.
Future Paralympian Search events are taking place in Calgary and Ottawa/Gatineau starting in the Fall of 2018.
More information on Paralympian Search