Sport

SOJ exposes athletes to Unified Basketball training

Tuesday, July 08, 2014    

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BASKETBALLERS from Special Olympics Jamaica (SOJ) were exposed to training tips from members of the national female basketball team at the National Stadium Courts over the weekend following an invitation by the Jamaica Basketball Association.

Also in attendance was a filming crew from the BBC's The Travel Show, which included television presenter and paralympian Ade Adepitan.

Adepitan has competed as a wheelchair basketball player at the international level.

The session was welcomed by the SOJ as they prepare for the Los Angeles 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games and as the local body puts added emphasis on Unified Sports.

The inclusive Unified Sports programme brings together athletes with intellectual disabilities and individuals without these disabilities as teammates for training and competition.

Last month during the National Summer Games, SOJ, through partnerships with Urban Knights basketball team, Papine Junior High and Leos Lions Club, had its first Unified Basketball competition.

The Special Olympics International movement has been placing increased focus on Unified Sports and SOJ have been grabbing every chance to expose athletes and also to help build their confidence and skill levels.

Jamaica's Unified Football team is set to compete at the first ever Special Olympics Unified Football competition in Malaysia in November.

For next year's Summer Games, Jamaica will be sending 69 athletes to participate in football, volleyball, badminton, bocce, aquatics, athletics, basketball and female futsal.

Bocce is a sport in which players use an underarm action to bowl a ball at a target. Points are gained by the ball's proximity to the target.

Futsal is a variant of football that is generally played on an indoor court between two teams of five players each.

Special Olympics empower people with intellectual disabilities, promoting acceptance for all, and fostering communities of understanding and respect across the world.

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