Why do hearing-impaired athletes stand out?

From May 1st to 15th, 2022, the world’s best hearing-impaired athletes will compete in the Deaflympics, a “silent game” invented in 1924, where the hearing-impaired community is culturally connected. ..

Paris, 1924. “Pierre de Coubertin, the Hearing Impaired”, Eugene Rubens Alkais, created the first “Silent World Game”. 148 deaf athletes from nine countries (Belgium, France, United Kingdom, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Netherlands, Poland and Romania) are competing in several areas, from athletics to cycling and soccer (from athletics to cycling and soccer). Article linked below). Therefore, this competition is held every four years, like the Olympics and Paralympics. 100 years later, on the eve of the 2024 Games in Paris, the shadow of Eugene Rubens Alkais still remains in the capital, where the next Olympic Games will be held. However, hearing-impaired athletes are not represented there.They have their own competition: Silent World Game, Renamed “Deaflympics” (Article linked below).

Breaking up with the International Paralympic Committee

So why is this absent? “The story is very complicated.” Sébastien Messager from the French Federation of Sports for the Disabled (FFH) will reply. “At that time, the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) encouraged hearing-impaired athletes to participate in the Paralympics, but eventually refused.” He says. Their representative International Sports Committee for the Hearing Impaired (ICSD) joined the IPC in 1985, but left the IPC ten years later in 1995 after some controversy. “Contrary to the initial two-part agreement, the IPC has imposed new conditions for participation, especially with respect to the number of hearing-impaired people, licensed areas, provision of interpreters and management of competitions. . “, Sebastian continues. In addition, so many reasons for the burst of ICSD that refused to admit the leader of the hearing. Since then, the Deaflympics have been the “ultimate cup” for the Deaf community, and he continues to be the main event that accompanies and is proud of. Therefore, there are currently no plans to integrate it into the Paralympics.

Athletes struggling to hear

At the physical level, if the abilities of hearing-impaired and hearing-impaired athletes have changed little or no, however, it is possible to include them in healthy individuals. “opposite effect” According to Sébastien Messager … there is a simple and justifiable reason for the language barrier. “But in sports, communication is just as important as physical fitness.” He explains. “On the contrary, when people do not sign, you may insist on integration, it is simply impossible, He adds. Athletes with hearing loss will be in the bubble inside the bubble. »» To put these two together “culture”, According to him, hearing people need to have better knowledge “The world of the hearing impaired”. But today, hearing-impaired sports, despite being a pioneer in the invention of sports for the disabled in the 19th century, struggle to hear themselves. In fact, like all sports not registered for the Olympics, the Deaflympics are not recognized as high-level competitions by the state. Those who say lack of visibility also say non-existent aids and subsidies. But Sébastien Messager is not in despair. “It’s the performance, the result that changes the situation.” Proven by the recent perception of bowling for the hearing impaired as a high level sport.

Hybrid course

Some athletes did not wait for such a decision. Individually, they are already bridging the gap between the two cultures. This is the case for Ludovic Bartout, the best hearing-impaired bowler player on a valid team. Paméra Rosange is also leading “Dual project” In athletics. A European deputy champion in the 2018 100 meters, she is still one of the most promising players of her generation. She hasn’t heard of the starter pistol, but she remains a formidable competitor for the upcoming competition in Paris in 2024 …

“All reproductions and representation rights are reserved. © Handicap.fr. This article was written by Handicap.fr journalist Clotilde Costil.”