Archery is a sport that is open to athletes even those who face physical limitations . While this sport is very physically demanding, it is one sport that disabled athletes can compete on an equal basis with able-bodied people. In fact wheelchair target archery has been a Paralympic sport for more than 30 years, and is still rising in popularity.
There are of course, specific rules relating to wheelchair competitors. However all other rules of competition are the same with able-bodied target archery. The difference is that wheelchair archers are divided into 2 different classes whereas there are other classifications for standing archers. Wheelchair archers compete in either W1 for quadriplegic archers that allow them to use a release mechanism, or W2 which is open to all wheelchair archers. In recent years, wheelchair archery has continously seen a rise in popularity for the wheelchair bound athletes.
The best part of wheelchair archery is that it does not require any special accessories like a sports wheelchair. One is even allowed to remove the armrest to improve aim. For others, a recurve 48-inch bow is recommended because the bow is lighter and easier to control. For persons with little arm strength, devices to help hold the bow may be allowed. Quadriplegics may have an assistant to help place the arrow in the bow, but verbal advice is against the rules.
Although outsiders may initially think the rules should be more lenient for the disabled, people participating in wheelchair archery appreciate the opportunity to be treated as another other sportsperson. The thrill of competing and participating in sports bonds many disabled sportsmen with the sport. Wheelchair archery provides an enjoyable diversion from the frustrating challenges of living a disabled life. For a time, wheelchair archery levels the playing field, and enables the disabled to live their life fully.
Wheelchair archery is not simply a sport to the wheelchair bound athletes; wheelchair archery is also a chance to be normal, a boost in self-esteem, an opportunity to get some much-needed exercise, and an activity to add adventure to the restrictive life of the disabled. Instead of sitting on the sidelines and always cheering on other athletes, wheelchair target archery allows the physically challenged unique occasions to hear cheers from the benches.
Wheelchair archery is an excellent competitive sport for anyone, regardless of ability, especially if you are up for a challenge.