Boccia is a target sport that tests muscle control and accuracy, demanding extreme skill and concentration at the highest level.
Boccia is played in more than 50 countries.

Key facts

Venue: ExCeL
Dates: Sunday 2 September – Saturday 8 September 2012
Medal events: 7
Athletes: 104

Believed to have Ancient Greek origins, Boccia is a tough test of nerve, tactics and skill. Played on a rectangular court by individuals, pairs and teams, the sport offers both tension and excitement, as athletes aim to land balls close to a target ball, across a series of demanding ends.

The basics

The object of the game is to propel a ball so that it lands as close as possible to the white target ball, known as the ‘jack’. Each player, pair or team gets six balls on each end. At the close of each end, the athlete, pair or team whose ball is closest to the jack scores one point, and receives an additional point for every ball that sits closer to the jack than the opposition’s closest ball. Individual and pairs matches consist of four ends, while team events are held over six ends.

Boccia is played by wheelchair athletes with cerebral palsy and related locomotor conditions, with players required to be in a seated position within a throwing box at one end of the playing court. The classification system ensures an even playing field for athletes to compete against others with similar disabilities.

Boccia, past and present

Boccia was introduced to the Paralympic programme at the New York and Stoke Mandeville 1984 Games. Today, there are seven medal events on the programme, all of which are open to athletes of either gender. The sport is currently played competitively in more than 50 countries worldwide.

For London 2012, the Boccia competition will be held at ExCeL, a multi-purpose events venue that will also host a number of other Paralympic and Olympic sports.

Jargon buster

– Court: The playing area, measuring 12.5m x 6m.
– End:
 A passage of play that features six balls per athlete, pair or team.
– Jack:
 The white target ball; competitors aim to land their balls as close to the jack as possible

Get involved

Boccia is truly a sport for all. A game of skill, it can be played together by men and women of all ages – with or without a disability.

The Cerebral Palsy International Sports and Recreation Association (or CPISRA) governs the sport at international level; to get involved with the sport in the UK, check with Boccia EnglandScottish Disability Sport, the Federation of Disability Sport Wales or Disability Sports Northern Ireland. You can also learn more about how to get involved on the Parasport website.

Great Britain compete in the Beijing 2008 Paralympic Games

~ by superbowlnyc on June 13, 2011.

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