Helena Oliviero - The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
The games will be played at Medtrade, the nation’s premiere trade show dedicated to the home medical equipment (HME) industry. Power Soccer is a competitive team sport developed specifically for power wheelchair users. The game allows athletes with multiple sclerosis, muscular dystrophy, cerebral palsy, and other disabilities to compete at a high level.
“It means so much to play for our country and to wear the red, white and blue,” said Pete Winslow, a 22-year-old Team USA player from Woodbury, Minn in a press release. “This is the highest level of competition for our sport, and I am happy to be a part of something bigger than myself. I also want to make history and to be a part of a team that wins three straight World Cups.”
The first game will take place at 11:00 a.m., and the second at 1:00 p.m. The court of play will be just off the center aisle, adjacent to the 700 Aisle in Building C (Halls 1-3). Members of the public can get a free pass to attend by going to www.medtrade.com/watchTeamUSA. Attendees must bring the pass to the registration counter at Medtrade.
Note: Medtrade policy states that no one under 16 is allowed on the expo floor, however an exception will be made during the two exhibition games. Persons under 16 must remain in the exhibition game area.
About the Game of Power Soccer
Most sports authorities agree that soccer is the world’s most popular sport—whether based on most fans, most participants, or whatever other definition is used to determine popularity. Many games have descended from the sport, and variations have developed from the game. Some were developed out of necessity, while others were modified to cater to people with disabilities.
Powerchair Football (aka Power Soccer) hopes to qualify the sport for inclusion in the Paralympics in the near future. Founded in France in 1978, today the game is played in 27 countries governed by the Fédération Internationale of Powerchair Football Association (FIPFA). Thanks to the United States Power Soccer Association (USPSA), the sport became more widespread in the United States in 2006. International World Cup competition began in 2007, with Japan serving as the first host country. France hosted the second World Cup in 2011.
Both World Cups were won by the USA team. Players for Team USA are selected from over 60 club teams currently playing the sport in the United States. USPSA will host the third Powerchair Football World Cup in Kissimmee, Fla, July 5-9, 2017.
The game is usually played in a gymnasium on a regulation basketball court. Two teams of four players attack, defend, pass and spin-kick a 13-inch soccer ball in a fast, skilled, and challenging game similar to the able-bodied game.
Learn more about Power Soccer in the USA by visiting www.powersoccerusa.net/ and FIPFA at http://fipfaworldcup.org/
Medtrade is scheduled for Oct 31-Nov 3, 2016, at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta.
Medtrade and Medtrade Spring are the two largest home medical equipment trade events in North America, bringing together manufacturers, providers, and retailers from across the country and around the world. Established in 1979, the shows gather hundreds of HME related brands, thousands of attendees.