2022 Beijing Winter Paralympics fun facts

By Kou Jie (People's Daily Online) 14:25, March 11, 2022

Record high number of female Para athletes

Guo Yujie of China gestures to spectators after the biathlon women's sprint standing event during the Beijing 2022 Paralympic Winter Games at the National Biathlon Centre in Zhangjiakou, north China's Hebei Province, March 5, 2022. (Xinhua/Wang Xi)

The number of female Para athletes at Beijing 2022 Paralympics has grown tremendously, featuring a record 138 participants, an increase on the 133 that took part at PyeongChang 2018.

Volunteers with disabilities

The 9,000-plus volunteers at the Beijing 2022 Paralympic Winter Games play a vital role in ensuring all aspects of life for the athletes, both on and off the ice and snow, run smoothly. Their efforts have earned the praise of athletes and officials from home and abroad. (Photo/Xinhua)

A total of 12 physically challenged volunteers have participated in this year’s Paralympics. The youngest is only 19 years old, while the most senior is 63. They come from all walks of life, including doctors, students, teachers, social workers and retired athletes.

Disabled-friendly services

Volunteers provide wheelchairs for Paralympians in Beijing. (Photo provided by Beijing Paralympics Committee)

All sports venues provide disabled-friendly services, including veterinarians for guide dogs, maintenance specialists for artificial limbs and wheelchairs. Meanwhile, 24-hour hospitals have also been set up in Paralympics village, offering various medical services, including dental care and psychological counselling.

Cultural events inside the closed-loop bubble

Photo taken on March 4, 2022, shows a scene of performance during the opening ceremony of the Beijing 2022 Paralympic Winter Games at the National Stadium in Beijing, capital of China. (Xinhua/Wu Zhuang)

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Para-athletes don’t have the chance to experience authentic Chinese culture outside the bubble. Beijing authorities have launched cultural events to assuage some of these regrets, including lion dancing and paper-cutting courses for Paralympians. On International Women’s Day, over 500 handicrafts made by volunteers were given to female Paralympians.

Unforgettable birthday memories

Canadian ice hockey player Adam Kingsmill celebrates his 22nd birthday with volunteers. (Photo provided by Beijing Paralympics Committee)

Being far away from home and friends, some Para-athletes have even celebrated their birthdays alongside volunteers in the Paralympics villages. March 3 happened to be Canadian ice hockey player Adam Kingsmill’s 22nd birthday, when he received a surprise hockey puck birthday cake from some of the volunteers.  

(Web editor: Hongyu, Liang Jun)


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