"This final line-up of sports ... will help the Organising Committee to further build momentum and excitement in Tokyo, Japan and throughout the entire world.”
On 31 January 2015, the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) announced that the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games will feature 22 sports, with badminton and taekwondo included for the first time. This announcement deserves No. 17 on the IPC’s Top 50 Moments of 2015.
After it had already approved 16 sports in October 2014, the IPC Governing Board approved another six sports for inclusion in the Games in January.
The 22 sports to be displayed at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games are: athletics, archery, badminton, boccia, canoe, cycling, equestrian, football 5-a-side, goalball, judo, powerlifting, rowing, shooting, sitting volleyball, swimming, table tennis, taekwondo, triathlon, wheelchair basketball, wheelchair fencing, wheelchair rugby and wheelchair tennis.
Football 7-a-side and sailing, however, will not be included in Tokyo 2020.
Sir Philip Craven, IPC President, said: “I would like to thank all 24 sports for applying for inclusion in the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games and pass on my congratulations to the 22 sports that have been approved by the IPC Governing Board. In particular, I’d like to pay testament to the sports of badminton and taekwondo for the work they have undertaken in securing their place at a Paralympic Games for the first time.
The IPC undertook a very extensive and rigorous review process of all sports starting in November 2013. All sports were assessed on the same criteria. The IPC’s aim has been to ensure that the final Tokyo 2020 Paralympic sports programme is fresh and features the best para-sports possible.
Hidetoshi Fujisawa, Tokyo 2020 Executive Director of Communications and Engagement, said: “Tokyo 2020 welcomes the announcement made by the International Paralympic Committee Governing Board on 31 January regarding the 22 sports to be included in the sports programme for the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.
“This final line-up of sports brings us a step closer to the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games and will help the Organising Committee to further build momentum and excitement in Tokyo, Japan and throughout the entire world.”
Twenty-four sports were eligible to apply for inclusion in the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.
Since the first Paralympic Games in Rome, Italy, in 1960, the Paralympic Games have continued to grow in size and stature. The first Games featured 400 athletes from 23 countries competing in eight sports -- archery, athletics, dartchery, snooker, swimming, table tennis, wheelchair fencing and wheelchair basketball.
At London 2012, the Games involved a record 4,237 athletes from 164 countries who took part in 503 medal events across 20 sports. A cumulated global audience of 3.8 billion watched the Games, whilst 2.78 million tickets were sold, making the Paralympics the third-biggest sporting event in the world behind the Olympics and FIFA World Cup.
In 2010, para-badminton, intellectually impaired basketball, para-golf, powerchair football and para-taekwondo all applied to be part of the Rio 2016 Paralympic sports programme but were unsuccessful with the Governing Board instead choosing applications from para-canoe and para-triathlon.
To find out more about the IPC’s Top 50 Moments of 2015, visit the dedicated page on the IPC’s website.