Frequently Asked Questions
Q: When are the Special Olympics?
A: Special Olympics Louisiana hosts approximately 100 competitions a year! Athletes participate in local or area programs first and then have the opportunity to advance to state, national and world games. Learn More about our competitions.
Q: What are Area Programs?
A: There are 13 Area Programs in the state of Louisiana. It is through Local, Parish and Area Programs that an athlete gets started in the Special Olympics Louisiana program. Parishes are grouped into Areas. Find Your Area.
Q: Who can participate?
A: Anyone! Visit who we serve to see how you can participate.
Q: What sports are offered by Special Olympics Louisiana?
A: SOLA offers more than 19 Olympic-type sports. See the list of sports here.
Q: What makes Special Olympics unique among sports organizations?
- We have programs for all ability levels.
- We serve those with some degree of intellectual disability.
- We offer events to accommodate a wide range of athletic interests.
- We ensure athletes compete against others of similar gender, age, and ability.
- We enable participants to compete against athletes of similar skills so that all have a fair chance to win.
- We do not charge a fee to athletes (or their families) to train or compete.
Q: What is the Special Olympics athlete oath?
A: "Let me win, but if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt."
Q: What impact does Special Olympics have on participants?
A: Children and adults with intellectual disabilities who participate in Special Olympics develop improved physical fitness and motor skills, greater self-confidence and a more positive self-image. They grow mentally, socially and spiritually and, through their activities, exhibit boundless courage and enthusiasm, enjoy the rewards of friendship and ultimately discover not only new abilities and talents but "their voices" as well.
Q: How are athletes awarded?
A: Athletes earn gold, silver or bronze medals or fourth through eighth place ribbons in each event. Athletes who are disqualified (for reasons other than unsportsmanlike conduct or violations of the division requirements of the SOI Sports Rules) or who do not finish an event shall be presented with a participation ribbon.
Q: What is the Special Olympics vision?
A: It is our vision to transform communities by inspiring people throughout Louisiana to open their minds, accept and include people with intellectual disabilities and thereby anyone who is perceived as different.
Q: How much does it cost?
A: There is no cost to the athlete to participate in Special Olympics. However, it costs approximately $150.00 per athlete which Special Olympics Louisiana must raise.
Q: How can I help Special Olympics Louisiana?