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[Hidden Wonders of Japan] Trying Out Para Sports One Year after the Tokyo Paralympics

Remember the amazing achievements of para athletes at the Tokyo Games? One year on, visitors to Komazawa Olympic Park got to try out para sports themselves.

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A participants in a hands-on event wear special goggles and operate a wheelchair for para athletics, sensing the physical abilities of para athletes in virtual reality (VR) at Komazawa Olympic Park in Setagaya, Tokyo August 20 (© Kyodo)

The public had a first hand chance to experience paralympic sports in an August 20 event organized by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government at Komazawa Olympic Park (Setagaya Ward). The event celebrated the first anniversary since the Tokyo Paralympic Games, which kicked off on August 24, 2021. 

Many families stopped by to try out games such as goalball (a team sport designed for visually-impaired athletes) and wheelchair rugby.

Participants interacted with Paralympians instructors. Wearing special goggles, they sat on para athlete wheelchairs and played on devices which, in Virtual reality (VR), allowed them to feel what it was like to be a para athlete.

Tokyo Paralympics swimming gold medalist Keiichi Kimura stopped by for a photo session with visitors. “I’m grateful that many people remember the race from a year ago,” he said, adding: “I hope that this experience will further promote para sports in Japan, beyond its popularity during The Tokyo Olympics.”

New Sensations: Trying Out Para Sports

駒沢オリンピック公園で開かれたイベントで、車いすバスケットボールを体験する来場者=20日午後、東京都世田谷区

Visitors experience wheelchair basketball at the celebration held at Komazawa Olympic Park, Tokyo, on August 20. (© Kyodo)

ブラインドサッカーを体験する子どもたち=20日午前、東京都世田谷区の駒沢オリンピック公園

Children playing blind soccer at Komazawa Olympic Park on August 20. (© Kyodo)

駒沢オリンピック公園で開かれたイベントで、車いすフェンシングを体験する谷本優翔さん=20日午前、東京都世田谷区

Yuto Tanimoto tries wheelchair fencing at an event held at Komazawa Olympic Park on August 20. (© Kyodo)

東京パラ競泳金メダリストの木村敬一選手(奥右から2人目)と記念写真に納まる来場者=20日午前、東京都世田谷区の駒沢オリンピック公園

Tokyo Paralympian swimming gold medalist Keiichi Kimura (second from right) and visitors pose for a photo at Komazawa Olympic Park on August 20. (© Kyodo)

体験イベントで、専用ゴーグルを着けてパラ陸上用の車いすを操作する参加者。仮想現実でパラアスリートの身体能力を感じた=20日午前、東京都世田谷区の駒沢オリンピック公園

A participant wearing special VR goggles and operating a para athlete wheelchair at the hands-on event at Komazawa Olympic Park on August 20.(© Kyodo)

駒沢オリンピック公園で開かれたパラ競技の体験イベント=20日午前、東京都世田谷区

Event to experience Para sports at Komazawa Olympic Park in Tokyo on August 20, 2022. (© Kyodo)

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(Read the Japanese article at this link here.)

Author: The Sankei Shimbun 

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