Athletes with disabilities can play almost any sport with the support of adaptive equipment. The Paralympic Games were founded in 1948 and have grown into a major international event, held in the same year as the Olympics. At the most recent Summer Paralympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 4,342 athletes representing 159 nationalities competed in 22 events. Qatar sent three athletes and brought home its first two medals in its history.
Qatar is a member of the International Paralympic Committee and competed in the Paralympics for the first time in 1996, with powerlifter Sarah Al Mulla as the lone representative. Since then, Qatar has had many successful para-athletes. Let’s take a closer look at some of them:
- Abdulrahman Abdulqadir, silver medal in shot put at the 2016 Summer Paralympics
- Sarah Hamdi Masoud, silver medals at the 2016 Summer Paralympics, 2017 World Championships in London and the 2018 Asian Para Games in Jakarta, Indonesia
- Muhammed Al Kubaisi, silver medalist in the 100-meter wheelchair sprint at the Tunis 2021 Grand Prix in Tunisia
- Qatar’s blind goalball team, winners of the 2019 West Asian Paralympic Games in Amman, Jordan
In 2018, Qatar turned in one of its finest performances at the 2018 Middle East and North Africa Special Games in Abu Dhabi. The country brought home 12 medals in competition against 35 countries.
- Faisal Al-Marri and Jarallah Darman each won gold medals in bowling
- Salma Al-Hammad won gold in the shot put and a silver in the 100-meter
- Hamad Al-Jaber won gold in standing weightlifting and silver in sitting weightlifting
- Mohammed Al-Mahmoud won gold in standing weightlifting standing and a bronze in sit-up weightlifting
- Khalifa Al-Dosari won bronze in the 100-meter run and ranked fourth in the 200-meter run
These athletes are symbols of inspiration and courage, proving that disabilities are not a stumbling block in achieving personal and professional goals and living an accomplished life.
Athletes with disabilities have core values of courage, determination, inspiration and equality. Paralympians are inspirations for both disabled and non-disabled people. All Paralympians who have taken part in any competition have fought against adversity throughout their lives, and yet they never gave up their dream of representing their country. This kind of sports platform enables disabled individuals to prove themselves.
Check these Qatari Books on Sport:
Ellen P. Floro
Information Services Librarian at Qatar National Library. She enjoys involvement with different programs and services for people with disabilities promoting awareness about their rights, needs and skills. Ellen also tries to work towards developing a positive mindset in society for better inclusion of people with disabilities.
#QatariLitMonth is curated by Abeer S. Al-Kuwari
Abeer works as director of Research and Learning Services at the newly established Qatar National Library (QNL). Abeer’s work focuses on engaging library researchers in the Qatari community to explore archival and libraries as memory institutions and documentary heritage.
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