At the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games, the Rio 2016 organizing committee revealed brand new medals, better suited for all contenders in the games. The bronze, silver, and gold medals may be individually identified by the visually impaired competitors at Rio with the use of a new device placed inside each medal, along with the use of Braille.
Within each of the 2,642 medals presented at the games, each contains an innovative device inside that uses tiny steel balls in order to make each medal color detectable. Bronze medals contain 16 steel balls, producing the lowest sound when shaken. Silver medals contain 20 balls and the gold medals contain 28. Now, the medals may be shaken in order to detect which type it is – a great triumph for those visually impaired competing in the games who may now really appreciate the medals and accomplishments they’re holding.
One side of the medal now features “Rio 2016 Paralympic Games” written in Braille. They also contain a pebble design engraving, symbolizing the courage and growth of the athletes competing.
Andrew Parsons, president of the Brazilian Paralympic Committee, revealed these new medals at the Future Arena on 14 June, stating:
“Brazil is preparing for its best Paralympic Games performance and I hope that many of these medals stay in the country.”
These medals may only be small in comparison to the hardships these athletes have endured throughout their journey to the Paralympic Games. However, no matter how small or large they may be, this redesign is a step forward for the games, making even the medals more inclusive and catered to all athletes competing.