A familiar face to the morning crew at our pool will compete on the world stage. Alice Luo will compete in the London 2012 Paralympic Games, which is the second-largest sporting event in the world, second only to the Olympics.
Alice trains at Chehalem Aquatic and Fitness Center with her coach Mark Maxwell, who was head coach for the U.S. Paralympic Swim Team in 1996 and 2000.
Alice has been an elite swimming competitor off and on her entire life. She first competed as a Taiwanese Olympian. Her life changed in 2002 when an injury left her partially paralyzed, but it was only a matter of time until her champion nature had her competing at elite levels again – and winning.
She competed in the 2008 Paralympics in Bejing, set a world record in 2009 in multiple events in Rio in the Short Course Worlds event, and in 2010 she won a gold medal in the 100-yard breast stroke at the Asian Games in China. That same year, she took two sixth places in the Long Course Worlds event in the Netherlands.
“I love to play in the water,” says Alice. “I like to win.”
Information from the London 2012 Paralympic Games website
Featuring a total of 600 athletes competing for 148 medals, Swimming will be the second biggest competition at the London 2012 Paralympic Games.
The classification for the sport includes categories for athletes with visual impairments, physical impairments and intellectual impairments They use the four basic strokes: Freestyle, Backstroke, Breaststroke and Butterfly.
Classification is a unique element of Paralympic sports, intended to ensure fair competition. As each sport at the Paralympic Games requires different skills and competencies, the impact of impairment on the performance of the athletes varies. That’s why each sport has its own unique classification rules.