Browse "Sports & Recreation"

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Special Olympics in Canada

Special Olympics is a global sports organization for people with intellectual disabilities. The impetus for the organization was research done by Canadian sports scientist Dr. Frank Hayden, who helped develop the first International Special Olympics Games in Chicago in 1968. The World Games are now held every two years and alternate between summer and winter events. The 2015 Summer Games were held in Los Angeles, California, and the 2017 Winter Games will be held in Austria. Canada began holding National Games in 1969, thanks to the efforts of broadcaster Harry “Red” Foster. Like the World Games, the National Games alternate between summer and winter events, with the 2014 Summer Games held in Vancouver, British Columbia, and the 2016 Winter Games held in Corner Brook, Newfoundland and Labrador. Special Olympics Canada has chapters in all provinces and territories, except Nunavut, and there are currently more than 40,000 children, youth and adults registered in Special Olympics programs across the country.

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Speed Skating

Speed-skating races are held for men and women both indoors and outdoors. Outdoor races are held on open-air oval tracks 400 m in length. Two competitors race in separate lanes against the clock, changing lanes at each lap so that both skaters go the same distance.

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Speed Swimming

Swimming was considered to be an important survival skill by the ancient Egyptians, Greeks and Romans but was not contested as a sport.

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Sport Parachuting

Parachuting is a sport, also known as skydiving. The earliest jumps were made from balloons, and the first successful parachute descent was performed in 1797 over Paris.

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Sportfishing

Fishing for sport as well as for food is inseparable from the history of human evolution. Some of the earliest evidence can be seen in rock shelter carvings of fish before 10 000 BC and in 5000-year-old Egyptian drawings of anglers.

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Sports Facilities

Sports facilities in Canada - including arenas, stadiums and curling rinks, swimming pools and specialized Olympic installations - are among the country's most important cultural buildings.

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Squash Racquets

Squash racquets is played with a long-handled, small-headed racquet in an enclosed court that resembles a giant, lidded shoebox. Each player (or pair in doubles) takes turns hitting the ball to the front wall - rather like lawn TENNIS but with both players on one side of the court.

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Stamp Collecting

The variety of themes and colours of stamps is endless and stamps often give a miniature pictorial history of a country, its culture and development, and even its flora and fauna.

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Stanley Cup

The Stanley Cup is the oldest trophy competed for by professional athletes in North America. It was donated by Governor General Lord Stanley in 1892 for presentation to the top hockey team in Canada, and was first awarded to the Montreal Amateur Athletic Association (1892–93). Since 1926, the Stanley Cup competition has been under the control of the National Hockey League (NHL). The Montreal Canadiens are the most successful team in Stanley Cup history, with 24 victories, followed by the Toronto Maple Leafs with 13. These two “Original Six” teams dominated the championship from the 1940s to the 1970s. (See also Lord Stanley and the Stanley Cup.)

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Summer camps and schools

Each summer musicians of all ages and abilities meet at music camps and schools across Canada to participate in programs of specialized instruction, supervised music-making, and, often, social and recreational activities. At many of these camps, music is one facet of a larger arts program.

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Synchronized Swimming

The governing body of synchronized swimming in Canada is Synchro Canada. The basic skills of synchronized swimming are strokes and figures, which were originally part of the Royal Life Saving Society program.

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Table Tennis

Table tennis is played by 2 (singles) or 4 (doubles) players, normally indoors. Opponents face each other and hit the ball with a racquet, alternately, over a 6-inch (15.25 cm) net stretched midway across a 9 x 5 ft (274 cm x 152.5 cm) table.

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Team Handball

Team handball is also known as European or Olympic handball. The object is to score goals by passing and throwing a ball (slightly smaller than a soccer ball) into the opponents' goal. It is played indoors on a court similar in size to that for basketball, with teams of 7 players.

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Tennis

Modern tennis almost certainly originated in France in the 11th century as a form of handball called le jeu de paume. The game, also called "court tennis" or "real tennis," was played on an indoor court - originally in a monastery - with a ball, and by 1500 a racquet was introduced.

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The History of Canadian Women in Sport

For hundreds of years, very few sports were considered appropriate for women, whether for reasons of supposed physical frailty, or the alleged moral dangers of vigorous exercise. Increasingly, women have claimed their right to participate not only in what were deemed graceful and feminine sports, but also in the sweaty, rough-and-tumble games their brothers played.