Age at the Youth Parapan Am Games:
Men: 12-16 years; 17-18 years
Women: 12-15 years; 16-18 years
In Paralympic swimming, the modifications are made at the start, turns and finish of races. The blind swimmers are helped by tappers, who touch the athletes with a pole whenever they approach the walls. Race starts can also be held in the water, for those athletes who are unable to stand on the platform and dive into the pool.
Heats are separated in accordance with the type and extent of the swimmers’ disability. Classes always begin with the letter S (swimming), and athletes may have different classifications for breaststroke (SB) and medley (SM). Athletes are classified by way of tests of muscular strength, articular movement and motor skills (held in the water). The more extensive disabilities are given the lowest classification number. Classes 1 to 10 are for athletes with physical-motor disabilities, 11 to 13 are for visually impaired athletes, and class 14 is for swimmers with mental disabilities.