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The profile of athletes with a vision impairment: Exploring demographics and ocular pathologies of athletes in three Paralympic sports
journal contributionposted on 2023-09-01, 15:19 authored by Franziska Zenk, Ash Willmott, Daniel Fortin-Guichard, Kizzy Austick, David Mann, Ciro Winckler, Peter M. Allen
Objective This study aimed to explore the profile of athletes with a vision impairment (VI) who compete in three Paralympic sports (goalball, VI judo and blind football). Design Descriptive and association analyses of the VI athletes’ profile were conducted. Results The typical athlete profile was a male (65.1%), aged 26-34 years (39.7%), from Europe (38.8%), representing a country with a high-income (46.1%) and was diagnosed with a retinal-related ocular pathology (38.9%). In all three sports, the ages of the athletes were similar. In goalball, most athletes were from Europe, represented countries with a high-income and were diagnosed with retinal-, globe-, or neurological-related pathologies. In VI judo, the majority of athletes were from Asia, represented countries with an upper-middle-income and were diagnosed with retinal-, global-, or neurological-related pathologies. In blind football, most athletes were from Europe, represented countries with an upper-middle-income, and were diagnosed with retinal-, neurological-related ocular pathologies, or glaucoma. Conclusions The homogeneity of the athletes’ profile suggests that an effort is needed to target other parts of the VI population to take part in VI sports. Differences in the athletes’ profiles across the sports provides information that may be useful for sport-specific talent identification.
Publication titleAmerican Journal of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation
PublisherLippincott, Williams & Wilkins
- Accepted version