INVICTUS GAMES DÜSSELDORF 2023 presented by Boeing is taking place with the aim of promoting the recovery and rehabilitation of wounded, injured and sick servicemen and women. As host city, Düsseldorf will introduce the traditional sport of table tennis to the competition.
In Germany, in particular in Düsseldorf, table tennis is one of the most traditional sports. The discipline improves not only coordination and reaction, but also concentration. This has a especially positive effect on participants with psychological and neurological damage. At the Invictus Games, there are five seated and five standing competition classes, and all matches are held on a best-of-five basis, with a playing time of approximately 30 minutes per round in both singles and doubles competition.
As one of the oldest adaptive sports disciplines ever, archery promotes concentration, improves balance while sitting in a wheelchair, strengthens back, chest, and shoulder muscles, and can also be practiced by physically and mentally impaired servicemen and women. The discipline has been part of the Games’ competition program since 2014. At the Invictus Games, the archery competitions will take place in the purpose-built facility in the Invictus Games Park in front of the MERKUR GAME ARENA. There are both individual as well as team competitions. Each nation may enter a team consisting of three archers in each category. The competitors registered for the team competition must have taken part in an individual competition already.
With its variety of running, throwing, and jumping disciplines, Athletics is one of the most versatile sports in the world. Because of this flexibility, many sports in athletics can be done standing up or sitting down, with or without a wheelchair. In the Invictus Games, there are seven starting classes in each of the Track (running, jumping) and Field events (throwing). Five running events are featured with 100m, 200m, 400m and 1,500m races and the 4×100m relay. In addition, the participants can compete in discus throwing, shot put and long jump. The events will be held at the track and field facility in the Invictus Games Park in front of the MERKUR GAME ARENA.
Indoor rowing requires strength, endurance and coordination, and can be used to improve fitness condition, allowing people with a wide range of impairments to participate. The participants compete on rowing ergometers that can be adapted to their specific needs and simulate the movements of rowing in the water. At the Invictus Games, participants will be divided into six different categories, with men and women competing in separate events on stage at the MERKUR SPIEL-ARENA. The goal is to cover as great a distance as possible within a certain period of time. In the Individual Sprint, participants compete against each other for one minute, while the Individual Endurance Race lasts four minutes.
Participants in the sport of Power Lifting benefit primarily from strengthening the muscles of the upper body. Competitors with and without wheelchairs lie on their backs on the weight bench and must lower the barbell to their chest in a controlled manner, then press it up again until their arms are fully extended. Each participant has three attempts to lift the maximum load. If more than one competitor lifts the same weight, the one with the lowest body weight wins. At the Invictus Games, the competitions will be held on the stage of the MERKUR SPIEL-ARENA.
As one of the most successful and popular sports, sitting volleyball will take place at the Invictus Games on the center court and Field 1 in the MERKUR SPIEL-ARENA. In principle, it can be played together by competitors with and without disabilities as well as in a mixed-gender team. Each team consists of six competitors. In adaptive volleyball, the team that wins a rally always receives a point.
Adaptive swimming has been part of the Invictus Games since 2014. The special physical properties of the water enable swimmers to compete without prostheses or other technical aids, so that people with almost any kind of disability can take part. The swimmers will compete in both 50m and 100m freestyle, as well as 50m backstroke and 50m breaststroke in individual events. There will also be a 4 × 50m freestyle relay. The events will take place in the Rheinbad, but are unfortunately not open to the public.
Adaptive cycling offers, thanks to different types of bicycles, the possibility for people with almost all impairments (physical and mental) to participate. The only requirement is that they can actively move their upper or lower extremities. Participants race on two-wheelers, tricycles, tandems or hand-operated bicycles, so-called hand bikes. At the Invictus Games, the competitions will be held in the car park of the Invictus Games Park. The time trial takes place as an individual competition, whereby a distance of approximately two kilometres is cycled on a loop course against the clock. The criterium is a 30-minute race where the finishing time of the leader is calculated and determines the maximum number of laps for the field of participants. The winner is the one who has completed the most laps.
Wheelchair basketball has been an important adaptive sport since the late 1940s and has been a part of the competition since its first edition at the 2014 Invictus Games in London. It is a fast, acrobatic, passionate and inclusive sport based on the rules of pedestrian basketball, with baskets and court in the same dimensions. It will be played at the Invictus Games on Center court and Field 1 in the MERKUR SPIEL-ARENA in 5 vs. 5 mode. Competitors with and without disabilities can also play together as a mixed-gender team. The five players of a team are assigned a point value between one and three based on a functional classification considering their wheelchair basketball-specific abilities. The lower the degree of impairment, the higher the score. There may only be a maximum of 14 points on the field at the same time.
Wheelchair rugby was invented in Canada in 1977 to give people with spinal cord injuries the opportunity to compete in a team sport. It is considered one of the toughest sports in the world as although physical contact is not permitted, participants are allowed to use their wheelchairs to block opponents. Collisions are not uncommon as a result. Wheelchair rugby strengthens core and arm muscles, increases endurance and improves coordination and tactical skills. The tournament may be played as mixed gender teams; there is no minimum requirement for the number of women and men. Competitors are grouped according to their functional movement capabilities. If participants suffer from a mental health injury, they take part in the “Open” category. The wheelchair rugby matches will take place on the Center court and Field 1 in the MERKUR SPIEL-ARENA.
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