Medicine: Paralympics of 1953

The playing fields of Stoke Mandeville, Aylesbury, England, were cleared last week for a competition called the Paralympics, and a crowd of 3,000 watched teams from eight nations fight out the two-day meet. The sports on the calendar were commonplace: netball (similar to U.S. basketball), snooker, archery, table tennis, javelin throwing, shot-putting and swimming. The manner of competition, though, was singular. Each of the 200 contestants was a paraplegic, denied the use of his lower body and forced to remain in a wheelchair for life. Some players were so badly crippled that the...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!