Special Olympics Young Athlete is an early childhood sports play program for children aged two to seven years old. Our young athletes learn basic sports skills like kicking and throwing a ball and playing with others. Children with and without intellectual disabilities play together. Families also have the opportunity to get involved in the fun and connect with the Special Olympics community of support.
While young athletes play, they gain motor skills like balance, flexibility, strength and coordination. In fact, in a recent study, children with developmental delays who participated in a structured ten-week Young Athletes program showed significantly more motor development than those who did not participate. Not only that, but their teachers and parents also reported improved confidence, language skills and social skills. Another benefit was families played more together at home and in the community.