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FAQ

Who is eligible to compete?

Everyone with any type of dwarfism (that is, any proportionate or disproportionate skeletal dysplasia) is eligible to register for competitive events after providing to DAAA:

Verification of height:
  • 5 ft. 0 in. maximum - for a disproportionate dysplasia
  • 4 ft. 10 in. maximum - for a proportionate dysplasia
Agreement to abide by official DAAA policies, procedures, and sports rules.

Agreement to conduct oneself according to the DAAA behavioral contract, both on and off the competition sites.


Medical clearance from a physician confirming that you are physically able to compete and it is safe for you to compete. Medical clearance is waived for boccia participants, only.


Agreement to the DAAA Waiver and release of liability and Publicity release.
Submission of registration and sport entry fees.

No person shall, on the grounds of sex, race, religion, color, national or ethnic origin, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or otherwise be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity of DAAA.

When Are the Games?

DAAA National Games are held in the U.S. annually during the summer, usually in early July. The timing and location of the Games are planned to coincide with the annual National Conference for Little People of America (LPA). The locations of future Games can be found on web site and Facebook. 

DAAA athletes can participate in the World Dwarf Games, held internationally every four years. For locations of future Games, please see watch for announcments on Facebook and website. 

What Sports are offered?

Annual National Games competitions can include a number of sports appropriate for a range of ages and abilities.


Most years the variety of sports includes the following:
Badminton
  • Singles: Junior, Open, Masters,
  • Women's double: Junior, Open, Masters
  • Men's double: Junior, Open, Masters
  • Mixed double (male + female): Junior, Open, Masters
Basketball
  • Junior & Open

Boccia

  • Individual & Teams
  • Future, Junior, Open Masters
Flag Football
  • Teams: Futures, Junior, Open (including Masters)
Floor Hockey


Kurling

Powerlifting

  • Open, Masters
Table Tennis
  • Singles: Junior, Open, Masters
  • Doubles: Open, Masters
Track athletics
  • individual - 15m, 20m, 40m, 60m, 100m, 200m
  • relay - 4 x 60m, 4 x 100m Field athletics
  • shot put
  • discus
  • javelin
  • tennis ball (for children 4 to 12 years old)
  • softball throw (for children 4 to 12 years old)
  • flippy flyer throw (for children 4 to 12 years old)
Soccer
  • Teams: Futures, Junior, Open (including Masters)
Swimming
  • breaststroke - 25m/yd, 50m/yd, 100m/yd
  • backstroke - 25m/yd, 50m/yd, 100m/yd
  • freestyle - 25m/yd, 50m/yd, 100m/yd, 200m/yd
  • butterfly - 25m/yd, 50m/yd
  • individual medley - 100m/yd, 200m/yd
  • freestyle relay - 4 x 25m/yd
  • t-shirt relay - 4x25m/yd
  • lifejacket swim - 25m/yd (for children 4 to 12 years old)
  • kickboard swim - 25m/yd (for children 4 to 12 years old)
Volleyball
  • Teams: Juniors & Open (including Masters)

What is the age requirement for DAAA athletes?

DAAA events accommodate four age divisions: Future, Junior, Open and Master. At some ages, athletes could qualify for either of two divisions. DAAA requires that during DAAA Games, each athlete must compete in only one division for all events entered.


6 yr. and underFuture division sporting events are non-competitive. Every athlete receives encouragement for competing, playing fairly, and doing their best. Sports are limited to selected track, field, swimming, and soccer events (all sports will be non-medal, instructional events at which athletes receive participation ribbons).

7-15 yrJunior division events emphasize achieving personal best above winning. Individual performances are judged separately according to gender, age, and official classification. Due to the wide age range within the junior division and the resulting competitive concerns, athletes in the junior division compete in the following age classifications for these sports.

Volleyball, Basketball and Flag Football | 7-11 years old | 12-15years old

Soccer  | 4-6 years old (instructional) | 7-11 years old | 12-15 years old

Powerlifting Athletes must be at least 16 years of age to compete in Powerlifting. There are no Junior powerlifting events. 

Badminton & Boccia | 7-15 years old

Track & Field and Swimming | 7-9 years old | 10-12 years old | 13-15 years old (Athletes in this age range may register and participate in either the Junior or the Open division for track & field and/or swimming. Note that a 13 to 15 year old athlete must compete in the same division (junior or open) for all events entered into at the track & field or swimming meet.

16-39 yrOpen division athletes. Individual performances are judged according to the official rules and regulations for each sport. SomeJunior aged athletes may compete in track & field and swimming in the Open division (as identified below).

13-15 years old for track & field and/or swimming only: Athletes in this age range may register and participate in either the Junior or the Open division for track & field and/or swimming. Note that a 13 to 15 year old athlete must compete in the same division (Junior or Open) for all events entered into at the track & field or swimming meet.

16-34 years old

35-39 yr: Athletes in this age range may register and participate in either the Open or the Master division for track & field and/orswimmingNote that a 35 to 39 year old athlete must compete in the same division (Open or Master) for all events entered into at the track & field or swimming meet.

40 yr. and aboveMaster division athletes.

35-39 yr: Athletes in this age range may register and participate in either the Open or the Master division for track & field and/orswimmingNote that a 35 to 39 year old athlete must compete in the same division (Open or Master) for all events entered into at the track & field or swimming meet.

Athletes should use their age as of December 31 in the year of competition to determine which age classification they will participate in. For team sports, all team members are required to meet the age classification for the team as identified above.

While it is the intention of DAAA to have Future and Junior athletes compete within the age classifications identified above, at times we may find that the number of registered participants within an age classification does not provide for complete teams or results in a tournament that is not competitive. At the discretion of the DAAA Board of Directors, the age requirements defined above may be modified in order to complete teams and/or ensure a competitive tournament. 


What is a Classification?

DAAA uses a classification system to provide the opportunity for competition between athletes of similar shape and size. On the FAQ page on this web site, you can find a general description of Class 1, 2, and 3 body-types


For sports involving running, classification is based on the ratio of standing-height to sitting-height. For sports involving reaching, classification is based on the ratio of arm-span to shoulder-width.

How do I measure for classification?

Is there a DAAA classification system for different body-types?

Recognizing the diversity of body proportion types, height ranges, and mechanical advantages in the dwarf population, DAAA uses a classification system for the Open age division. This system allows athletes to be grouped by body proportions and height, thus allowing fair competition based on technique and ability, rather than mechanical advantage. 


In general, athletes with average trunk and short extremity length are judged separately from athletes with short trunk and long extremity length. DAAA also considers cases of extremely short stature, regardless of body proportion type, when assigning classes.

Classification is used in individual competitive sports (track, field, swimming, table tennis) and in basketball.

Is DAAA affiliated with other organizations?

DAAA has in the past been affiliated with United States Paralympic Committee, United States Olympic Committee, America's Athletes with Disabilities, Disabled Sports USA (DSUSA), United States Disabled Athletes Fund (USDAF), National Paralympic Commitees (NPC), International Organizations of Sport for the Disabled (IOSD), International Dwarf Athletic Federation (IDAF), Little People of America (LPA), and the Billy Barty Foundation. Whether the intent is recreational (to have fun), developmental (to learn techniques and skills) or elite (to be the best), most children, youth and adults in the United States have numerous opportunities to participate in sports. These same opportunities are not available to dwarf Americans. Setting a goal to be the best requires a context where there is a chance to reach your goal. 


DAAA is here to provide that context. Where sports for dwarf athletes are rewarding, where each athlete's potential is taken seriously, and where each athlete has a realistic opportunity, through hard work and dedicated training, to be the best!
 

How are individual competitions different from team events?

For all sporting events between individual athletes, competitors are separated by gender (male or female), age (division), and body type (classification). 

In general, team sports such as basketball, volleyball, soccer, and team boccia allow teams composed of both females and males with any body type, but within a single age division. 

When are medical X-rays required as part of DAAA registration?

Certain non-achondroplasic dwarf conditions have abnormalities of the cervical vertebrae which may lead to instability of the neck and result in serious injury including paralysis. DAAA asks that ALL athletes check with their physicians to confirm they are physically able to participate in sports. We ask that ALL athletes share any X-rays with your physician prior to them signing your medical evaluation form to confirm you are safe to play the sports in the National Games.  


Upon clearance from the physician, the athlete may participate in all activities of DAAA.



Especially if you're an athlete with cervical spine abnormalities, please check with your doctor before competing in DAAA. 



Medical X-rays are not required for participation in boccia competition.

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