Competition & Games

sopa-rings

General Information

Special Olympics Pennsylvania (SOPA) offers more than 300 competitions for nearly 20,000 athletes in 55 local programs.  Competition is offered in 21 Olympic-type sports and three emerging sports for athletes eight years or older.  Unlike other sporting events, there is no charge to participate or attend a Special Olympics competition for the competitor, family or spectator.  SOPA operates on a tri-season basis of winter, summer, and fall.  Athletes are eligible to progress from local, to sectional, to state, to national or even international competition.  Special Olympics alternates between World Summer and World Winter Games every two years, similar to the Olympics. 

How To Participate

In order to compete, all athletes must train with their local program for a minimum of eight consecutive weeks prior to competition.  In order to train and get involved, athletes must complete an Application for Participation  and submit it to their local program coordinator. To participate as an athlete or coach, find a local program nearest to you and contact them directly. 

How Do Athletes Advance to Higher Level Competitions?
What Is Divisioning?
What Is Random Selection?
What Are Allocations?
Local/Invitational Competitions
Sectional Competitions
State Competitions
National Competitions
World Games