The 2020 (2021) Tokyo Olympics set records for having the most openly LGBTQ athletes in Olympic history. Now, the Paralympics are also breaking records. The Paralympics, which are also taking place in Tokyo, will began on August 24th and current reports state that there are 28 openly LGBTQ athletes from eight countries competing in this year’s games.
Among them are Robyn Lambird, a wheelchair racer from Australia, and Sir David Lee Parson, an 11-time gold medal para-equestrian from the United Kingdom.
The International Paralympic Committee states that a total of 22 sports will take place this summer, including swimming, cycling, and wheelchair rugby, which became a world-famous sport after the release of the critically praised documentary, Murderball, which chronicled the US and Canadian rugby teams leading up to the 2004 Paralympic games.
According to OutSports, Monique Matthews is part of the USA sitting volleyball team, and her husband is currently transitioning. When speaking to OutSports, Matthews stated, “I love seeing our out Paralympians highlighted because it shows that while we still have a ways to go, as a society, we have become more accepting therefore people are able to be their authentic selves and feel safe…It gives me great pride to be part of such a diverse trailblazing group of people.”
In total, over 4,500 athletes from 160 countries are taking part in the Tokyo Paralympics. The games can be streamed online, and watched on NBCSN and on the NBC Sports app.