- Published on 02 March 2015
Cross Country Skiing is a winter sport which promotes superior physical conditioning while providing enjoyment for athletes of all age s. Special Olympics cross country skiing events are designed to be appropriate for athletes of every ability level. Individual events offered in cross country skiing range from the 500 meter race to the 10K. In addition to these traditional events, Special Olympics offers events for lower ability level athletes to train and compete in basic cross country skiing skills. The development of these key skills is necessary prior to advancing to longer competitive events.
Special Olympics athletes can also participate in a Unified Sports® cross country skiing relay event. Special Olympics Unified Sports is a program that combines Special Olympics athletes and athletes without intellectual disabilities (partners) on sports teams for training and competition.In Unified Sports cross country skiing, a relay team would consist of two Special Olympics athletes and two partners. Selection of athletes and partners of similar age and ability is preferred for Unified Sports training and competition in cross country skiing; age and ability matching will enhance the quality of the training and competition experience.
As in all Special Olympics sports, athletes are grouped in competition divisions according to ability level, age and gender.
Cross Country Skiing Facts
- Special Olympics Cross Country Skiing was first included in the 1977 Special Olympics World Winter Games.
- At the 2001 Special Olympics World Winter Games in Anchorage, Alaska, USA, 238 athletes from 26 Special Olympics Programs competed in cross country skiing.
Cross Country Skiing Events
- 500 Meter Cross Country Skiing Race
- 1K Cross Country Skiing Race
- 3K Cross Country Skiing Race
- 5K Cross Country Skiing Race
- 7.5K Cross Country Skiing Race
- 10K Cross Country Skiing Race
- 4x1K Cross Country Skiing Relay
- 4x1K Unified Cross Country Skiing Relay
The following events provide meaningful competition for athletes with lower ability levels:
- 100 Meter Cross Country Skiing Race — Classical Technique
- 50 Meter Cross Country Skiing Race — Classical Technique
- 25 Meter Ski Race — Classical Technique
10 Meter Ski Race — Classical Technique