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Persons with Disability and Sport

Prepared by: Dr Ralph Richards, Senior Research Consultant, Clearinghouse for Sport
Updated by: Christine May, Senior Research Consultant, Clearinghouse for Sport
Evaluated by: Australian Paralympic Committee , (January 2016)
Reviewed by: Australasian Sport Information Network
Last updated: 13 October 2020
Content disclaimer: See Clearinghouse for Sport disclaimer

People with a disability receive the same physical, mental, and social benefits from participating in sport and physical activity as those not having a disability. Legally, Australians of all abilities should have access to sport and physical activity opportunities.

Persons with a disability include individuals with physical, sensory, intellectual, psychiatric, and/or other health related disabilities.

Key messages


Disability should not exclude someone from participation in appropriate sports and physical activity.


Stakeholder organisations use needs-based and inclusive strategies to engage persons with disability, encouraging them to be physically active.

High performance

Persons with disability have access to a high performance sport pathway through the Paralympic movement and other sport specific programs.

Topic focus

Access to resources
Where possible, direct links to full-text and online resources are provided. However, where links are not available, you may be able to access documents directly by searching our licenced full-text databases (note: user access restrictions apply). Alternatively, you can ask your institutional, university, or local library for assistance—or purchase documents directly from the publisher. You may also find the information you’re seeking by searching Google Scholar.

Further resources and reading

Is this information complete?

The Clearinghouse for Sport is a sector-wide knowledge sharing initiative, and as such your contributions are encouraged and appreciated. If you would like to suggest a resource, submit a publication, or provide feedback on this topic, please contact us.

Alternatively, if you would like to be kept up to date with research and information published about this topic, please request a research profile setup.

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