Sports of the Parapan Americans Games: Para cycling

The sport made its Parapan American debut at Guadalajara 2011. Road and track cycling events are contested.

Para cycling got its start with vision impaired cyclists competing on tandem bikes. Today, the sport also includes athletes with physical disabilities, cerebral palsy and amputees.

Road cycling made its Paralympic debut at New York/Stoke Mandeville 1984 and has been contested at every Games since. Track Para cycling entered the Paralympic programme 12 years after in Atlanta, USA.

Road cycling

Cyclists begin en masse and complete a set number of circuits of a 7- to 10-kilometre lap. First across the finish line wins. 

In time trial competitions, athletes start individually in 60-second intervals. It’s a race against the clock; the fastest time over the set distance wins. 

Track cycling

Track cycling events take place in a velodrome on a wooden oval track, and range in distance from 200-metre time trials to team pursuits of four kilometres. Athletes compete on bicycles or tandems. 

In the time trial, athletes compete alone and from a standing start. The best time wins. In individual pursuit, two opposing athletes start at opposite ends of the track. The fastest time over the set distance wins.