Special Olympics - New Hampshire
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Athletes, Families & Local Programs

Special Olympics offers programs to athletes ages 2 and older. Our Young Athletes Program (YAP) is for children ages 2-7 and Special Olympics competitions are open to athletes ages 8 and up.  There is no maximum age to participate. Our athletes come from every part of the state and from every economic group. They all have one thing in common - the desire to do their best and have fun at the same time.

All the programs offered in New Hampshire provide athletes with the chance to develop physical fitness, sports skills, social skills and self-esteem. Athletes train for a minimum of eight weeks and compete in Regional and State events. Eight state tournaments, including Summer and Winter Games, allow the athletes to show their skills.

To get involved as an athlete, download the Application for Participation. In order to train or compete in Special Olympics, an athlete must be examined by a licensed examiner (medical doctor, physician's assistant or nurse practitioner)  and have a current Application for Participation (medical) on file. An Application for Participation is valid for three years from the date of the examiner's signature.
  • To see who is eligible to compete in Special Olympics, click here.
  • To learn more about the sports opportunities for athletes, click here.
  • To learn more about the non-traditional roles for athletes in New Hampshire, click here.
  • To find a YAP near you, please click here.

Families play a critical role in the continued success and growth of Special Olympics New Hampshire. Families aren't always your traditional "Mom and Dad," but can be volunteers, coaches, fundraisers and speakers. But most importantly, they are a constant source of support and encouragement for their athlete. Families know first hand the remarkable difference Special Olympics makes in the lives of their athletes.  Families know that Special Olympics boosts athletes' self-esteem and belief in their abilities so that they can become an intricate part of their community whether that is at home, at school or in the workplace.

Local Programs
Special Olympics New Hampshire has more than 83 Local Programs throughout the state.  Local Programs are volunteer run and are the reason SONH is able to serve so many athletes within the state.  Local Programs vary in size but each has a Local Program Coordinator (LPC) who oversees their program.  Local Program Volunteers support their program in various roles such as a chaperone, coach, and/or Unified partner.  Each Local Program is responsible for raising funds to support their athletes, which includes transportation, facility fees, equipment and team uniforms. 

State Winter Games
Click here to see a slideshow from the 2015 State Winter Games.