You’ve probably heard that the Superhumans are coming but what are the sports they’ll be competing in? Here’s our potted guide to the Paralympic programme – click through for more information or visit the excellent C4 Paralympics website.
Archery: athletes need killer aim and a cool head to fire at a target 70m away, whether standing or in a wheelchair at Royal Artillery Barracks, Woolwich.
Athletics: The Olympic Stadium will host track events: 100m Sprint, 200m, 400m, 800m, 1500m, 4x100m Relay, 4x400m Relay. The Marathon starts and finishes on the Mall. Field events in the Stadium are Club Throw, Shot Put, Javelin, Discus, Long Jump, Triple Jump and High Jump.
Boccia: pronounced ‘botcha’, this is a cross between petanque and bowls at ExCel.
Cycling Road: Brands Hatch makes its London 2012 venue debut with Paralympic cyclists on regular bikes, tandems, tricycles and handcycles.
Cycling Track: Sprints, Pursuits and Time Trials are fought — visually impaired cyclists participate on a tandem with a sighted pilot, others ride adapted bikes, all wear different coloured helmets according to their disability in the Velodrome.
Equestrian: Para-Dressage is all about the beautiful union of rider and horse in Greenwich Park.
Football 5 a side: Blind players, sighted goalkeepers, shouty coaches and a ball with a bell inside at the Riverbank Arena.
Football 7 a-side: cerebral palsy footballers play standard FIFA rules in two 30 minute halves at the Riverbank Arena.
Goalball: All players wear eye shades so no one can see so silence in court is paramount! Teams battle to get that ball into the opponents net in the Copper Box.
Judo: dramatic self defence contests for blind or visually impaired opponents at ExCel.
Powerlifting: this “backbreaking event involves years of training, the consumption of a lorry-load of pasta and natural talent” (as per C4 Paralympics) takes place at ExCel.
Rowing: Paralympic rowers race specially adapted boats to the Eton Dorney roar!
Sailing: Team GB’s new new three-person keelboat is aptly called Mandeville. See it set sail in Weymouth.
Shooting: includes a triathlon style event for the rifle discipline called Three Position where competitors get to show off their versatility by firing standing, kneeling and prone at Royal Artillery Barracks.
Swimming: Swimming is one of the largest sports on the Paralympic programme and 14 categories of Paralympians will swim for victory in the Aquatic Centre.
Table Tennis: wiff waff, ping pong, whatever you call it this is another of the largest sports on the programme and will be batted about at ExCel.
Sitting Volleyball: Lots of Londoners represent Team GB, trying to keep their buttocks on the floor at ExCel.
Wheelchair Basketball: the hoop is at the same height, the court the same size, the games the same length — it’ll be fast and furious at the Basketball Arena and North Greenwich Arena.
Wheelchair Fencing: there’s no retreat as these competitors wield swords and fight from a static position at ExCel.
Wheelchair Rugby: AKA “Murderball”. ‘Nuff said. Basketball Arena.
Wheelchair Tennis: it’s one hand on a wheel, one on a racket at Eton Manor.