After days of training and cultural activities across the seven emirates as well as an impressive torch run through the streets of Abu Dhabi, athletes competing in the Special Olympics IX Mena Games got down to business today with the start of divisioning.
The handball players kicked off the action just after 9am at Al Jazira Sports Club, Abu Dhabi with most other sports starting around 10am across eight venues in the city.
But what exactly is divisioning?
Well, it’s one of the main differences between Special Olympics competitions and those of most other sports.
Divisioning simply means structuring the competition so that athletes compete with those of similar ability in equitable divisions.
Doing so means that everyone, no matter ability level or disability, has a chance to go for gold.
Since the ability levels of Special Olympics athletes range greatly, divisioning is a crucial part of the competitions’ inclusion ethos.
So, if you’re in the mood for some sporting action today, get to ADNEC for badminton, basketball, volleyball, roller-skating and table tennis action or head along to Zayed Sports City for bowling, football and tennis.
Over at NYUAD, power lifters and swimmers will battle it out while on the university’s north field, athletes will tackle the long jump, shot put, 100m and 400m races.
Al Jazira Sports Club is hosting handball all day long and the Armed Forces Officers Club is the place for Bocce fans.
Most sports run until 4pm or 5pm this afternoon and the best part is, it’s free entry for everyone. Find out more about whats on and when by visiting #heretoparticpate