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News posted on Friday 12th April, 2024

What are the four Paralympic values?

Fiona Southorn, New Zealand Paralympian celebrating on podium

Since the first Paralympic Games in Rome, Italy, in 1960 the Paralympics have grown exponentially in size and scale. Today, the event provides a platform for Para athletes with a diverse range of impairments to showcase their outstanding abilities to millions of spectators and billions of TV viewers. In turn, driving social change and inclusion. 

At the heart of the Paralympic Movement are four core values. These values are determination, equality, inspiration and courage. 

Let’s take a closer look at the meaning behind each of these values: 


  • Courage: It encompasses the unique spirit of the Paralympian who seeks to accomplish what the general public deems unexpected, but what the Para athlete knows as a truth. It showcases someone who rises above their circumstances and shows their true worth. 
  • Determination: The manifestation of the idea that Para athletes push their physical ability to the absolute limit. A Paralympian will push themselves to the limit in order to achieve what they set out to do. 
  • Inspiration: When intense and personal affection is begotten from the stories and accomplishments of Para athletes, and the effect is applying this spirit to one’s personal life. Paralympians act as a positive role model and use their achievements to lead the way for others. 
  • Equality: Para sport acts as an agent for change to break down social barriers of discrimination for persons with an impairment. The Paralympic movement recognises that people have equal worth whatever their differences and take action to overcome prejudice and discrimination.  

These values underpin the Paralympic Movement and are at the heart of what we do here at Paralympics New Zealand. 


Building on the four Paralympic Values, Paralympics New Zealand also has its own vision and values and these are heavily influenced by the four Paralympic values: 

VISION: Through Para sport, lives will be transformed Values 

Leadership – in collaboration with Para athletes, members and partners, we will lead a strengthened and sustainable Para sport pathway in New Zealand. 

Excellence – we will strive for excellence at all levels of the Para sport pathway through to the Paralympic Games. 

Advocacy – we will champion the right for equal opportunity for all disabled New Zealanders to be involved in sport. 

For nearly 60 years, Paralympics New Zealand has championed Para sport in New Zealand. Our legacy of athletic performance at summer and winter Paralympic Games is not only world beating, but more importantly life changing. 

We believe we can contribute to a transformed New Zealand which is truly inclusive where Para athletes have the opportunity to participate at all levels of sport and are equally recognised for their successes. 

Our core roles are to provide strategic leadership through collaborative partnerships to strengthen and grow Para sport in New Zealand, and to lead teams to the Paralympic Games. As the National Paralympic Committee, we support the international Paralympic Movement in recognising the value and power of Para sport and see our purpose as transforming lives through Para sport in New Zealand. 


Our vision and mission and Paralympics New Zealand is aligned with the overall vision and mission of the IPC: 

Vision: Make for an inclusive world through Para sport 

Mission: To lead the Paralympic Movement, oversee the delivery of the Paralympic Games and support members to enable Para athletes to achieve sporting excellence. 

Thanks to the unique combination of ever-improving athletic performance and increasing global awareness, the Paralympic Games are today firmly established as the world’s number one sport event for driving social inclusion. The event boasts a strong track record for transforming attitudes, cities, countries, and the lives of millions of people around the world. 

Through the vision of the IPC and the supporting membership organisations, Para athletes are now able to achieve sporting excellence and perform in front of a global audience through the summer and winter Paralympic Games as well as World Championship events. 


Many sports and sporting events have a set of values. Schools and community sports groups often use these as inspiration to develop their own sets of values. They encourage young people to apply these values to all areas of school, work and life – not just to sport.  

We are proud to be part of the strong Paralympic Movement and encourage everyone to adopt the values of the Paralympic Movement in everyday life. 

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