competitive sports


A tried-and-true method of introducing individuals with intellectual disabilities to the benefits of sports. Many athletes and parents are comforted to know this is a place just for them.  


A place for you to be you

Athletic training and competition for athletes with intellectual disabilities is in our DNA. While Unified Sports is on the rise, we are still here for Special Olympics Athletes who want to compete in the traditional sports model, built specifically for individuals with intellectual disabilities.

With high-quality coaching, training, and competitions, Special Olympics sports offer a lifetime of activity and social engagement for the disability community. Show the world what you have in team and individual sports from athletics to volleyball!  


Athletes Competing in Traditional Special Olympics Sports


Sports Available


Sports Seasons


Traditional Sports Competitions Annually


Resources and Stories

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March was Madness for One Cape Cod Program

Special Olympics MA teams saw excitement on the court this season, especially the LIFE program which trained over 50 basketball athletes across four different teams!

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"Oh, my God!" World Games Nominees had Pretty Awesome Birthdays!

While there is no doubt, Tyler Lagasse and Lindsey Blagg have had some memorable experiences over the years, but in 2024 they were both surprised with some truly incredible news. Watch...

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Going the Xtra Mile—Teamwork Prevails at Annual Jolly Jaunt 5K

When Beth Donahue and Erin Delahunty saw their friend Paula struggling to reach the finish line at the 2023 Boston Jolly Jaunt, they began to back track and ran down the road to help their friend finish the race.


Frequently Asked Sports Questions

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What is the difference between Traditional Special Olympics Sports and Unified Sports?
What sports are offered in the traditional Special Olympics Sports model?
Can athletes still compete at the highest level in Traditional Special Olympics Sports?
get involved as an athlete

Athletes in Action