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Ice Sledge Hockey

The Ice Sledge Hockey is the most talked about event at this year’s Winter Paralympics in Vancouver. Ice sledge hockey is a fairly new sport and this year the players are starting to show amazing skill levels. The action has been exciting and full of great goals and big hits, and it is attracting large crowds.


Hustling History


Ice Sledge Hockey was invented in Sweden during the 1960s when a man invented the sledge because he could no longer use his legs to skate. The growth of the sport took a while to develop into international play and it finally became an event at the Paralympics in 1994. Now with more and more countries competing, Sledge Hockey is the most popular event at the Winter Paralympics.


Sweet Sledging


The most amazing thing to watch during the Sledge Hockey games is the way the players push their sledges so fast across the ice, and with amazing control. The sledge is like one big hockey skate and the player is sitting down on top of it. It’s hard to believe that these athletes can move so fast, stop, turn, and maneuver, while sitting in the sledge without using their legs. The game is remarkably fast considering that the players also have to control the puck.


Double Flip Sticks


The players use two short hockey sticks like ski poles to push their sledges. The sticks have a bunch of tacks at one end so that they can dig into the ice to get a big push. At the other end, there is a hockey blade used to control the puck just like a normal hockey stick. The players constantly have to flip their sticks to either push themselves forward or control the puck. It’s very complex and probably why the game is so mesmerizing to watch.


Going for Gold


The final games are set for the Paralympics and Canada will battle Norway for the Bronze while USA and Japan go for the Gold. The Paralympics tournament is the only time that Sledge Hockey is covered by the media, so you should try to catch a game before it’s over.


Related Stories:

  • Winter Paralympics 101
  • New Winter Olympic Sports
  • The 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympic Games
  • Meet the 2010 Winter Olympic Mascots!


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