Special Olympics Ventura County offers year-round sports training and athletic competition in 10 different sports. The year is divided into two (2) sports seasons: Spring/Summer and Fall/Winter.
Spring/Summer (February through June)
Athletics offers a wide range of events: running events from 25 meters up to 1500 meters, walking events range from 25 meters to 200 meters, and field events that include shot put, softball throw, running long jump and standing long jump
Because of the wide array of swimming events offered, aquatics is appropriate for a range of ages and ability levels; however athletes must be able to swim to participate. Aquatics competition events include individual and relay events for the majority of swim strokes. The developmental events are conducted in the shallow pool area for safety considerations.
In addition to team competitions, Special Olympics basketball also offers scrimmage play, which allows athletes to train and compete in basic basketball skills. The majority of the teams are co-ed with the exception of the high skill level teams.
Bocce is a game of skill and strategy that resembles lawn bowling. The object is for one team to get as many of their balls (boccia) closer to the pallina (the smallest ball) than the opposing team's closest ball.
The Special Olympics Golf Program is centered on two-educational phases designed to encompass all skill levels: learning to swing a golf club and learning to play the game. Athletes may participate in Skills, 9-hole stroke play, or 9-hole alternate shot stroke play with a Unified Partner
Fall/Winter (August to mid-December)
Although there are ramp modifications for athletes with physical disabilities, most athletes compete under the same rules as athletes on a professional tour. In addition, Unified Team Bowling is very popular with two athletes and two partners teaming up to compete.
Special Olympics soccer offers 5 player and 7 player team formats. The field dimensions are substantially minimized due to less players on a team.
Athletes play slow-pitch softball, with a team consisting of 10 athletes on the field at any given time. Team levels are determined by skill ability with the lower level division using modified rules and a softer ball for safety considerations.
Athletes may play singles and/or doubles play. The level of play is determined by a comprehensive skills assessment. Racquets are provided.
Volleyball consists of 6 players on a team. Regulation volleyball rules are followed. The majority of teams are co-ed.
The Ventura County Region office has provided a comprehensive practice schedule for all of the sports listed above. View the current season training calendar.
To participate in any of the sport programs listed above, an athlete must have a Special Olympics medical and consent form completed by their doctor and mailed to the Special Olympics Ventura County office. No athlete can begin practice until the paperwork has been cleared by the Sports Manager and the Special Olympics Southern California compliance office. All athlete forms are available in the "Athlete" section of Resources page.
If you have any questions regarding the sport programs, please contact us at 805.650.7717.
Each sport program offers two competitions within its season. Athletes must have a minimum of eight hours of training in order to be eligible to compete at a Special Olympics tournament.
Transportation, uniforms, lunch and awards are provided for all athletes at each competition.
To learn more about upcoming competitions, please view the competition calendar.