Para canoe made its debut at the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games. The sport is exactly like canoeing for able-bodied athletes, allowing those with physical impairments at all levels to enjoy the sport. At international level all para canoe races are individual events and competed at a distance of 200m.
Para canoe is a young sport which developed at the start of the century thanks to big efforts of the sport’s governing body International Canoe Federation (ICF) and the International Va Federation (IVF), who both pushed for the inclusion of Para canoe within abled-bodied competitions.
In 2009, the ICF organised the first Para canoe showcase event, which was a big success. One year later, Para canoe had its first World Championships and was included into the Paralympic programme.