Guttmann Games and World Games combine for ‘festival of sport’


The International Wheelchair and Amputee Sports Federation (IWAS) has announced that its first Guttmann Games will combine with the 2021 IWAS World Games in Vila Real de Santo Antonio, Portugal, from 10-12 October as part of one huge festival of sport.

The IWAS Guttmann Games will showcase the very best of sports on offer for athletes with physical impairments that are not currently on the Paralympic programme.

The first edition will feature beach paravolley and wheelchair cricket.

These will be held alongside athletics, swimming, powerlifting and cerebral palsy football which form the IWAS World Games.

IWAS President, Rudi Van Den Abbeele, said: “We are really excited to announce the historic first edition of the IWAS Guttmann Games, an event which we hope will bring new interest and profile to all the fantastic non-Paralympic sports out there.

“Until now the spotlight has mainly been on the more established Para sports, and we have been a firm part of that journey. The IWAS World Games have historically featured aspiring Paralympic sports before they gained their place on the programme.

“Now we want to give a dedicated platform to those athletes and organisations who strive for excellence, but do not currently have the opportunities that an international multi-sport format brings – just like Sir Ludwig Guttmann did with the International Stoke Mandeville Games all those years ago.

“We are looking forward to staging the IWAS World Games and IWAS Guttmann Games in a festival of sport, and to welcoming everyone to Portugal in October.”

The IWAS Guttmann Games logo featuring the profile of Sir Ludwig Guttmann

The Guttmann Games, which will be held every four years, are the latest addition to a growing IWAS programme. They are a tribute to Sir Ludwig Guttmann, the father of the Paralympic Movement and founder of IWAS forbear the International Stoke Mandeville Wheelchair Sports Federation, to honour his incredible legacy in growing Para sports. The IWAS World Games and IWAS World Youth Games are also held every two years.

Entries for Vila Real de Santo Antonio will be open shortly. Arrivals will be on 7 October ahead of classification and training on 8-11 October. Applications have been made to host classification for the IWAS World Games in athletics, swimming and powerlifting.

IWAS is monitoring the situation with COVID-19 carefully and will keep members updated should any changes to the Games or schedule need to be made.