World Parkinson’s Table Tennis Championships Goes to Crete
Photo: Hellenic Table Tennis Federation
The ITTF Foundation, the non-profit organisation within the ITTF Group that uses table tennis as a tool for development and peace by connecting people worldwide, is pleased to announce that the 2023 World Parkinson’s Table Tennis Championships will take place in Crete, Greece.
“We are delighted to partner with wonderful hosts, the Hellenic Table Tennis Federation, on the beautiful island of Crete for the next 2023 World Parkinson’s Championships,” Leandro Olvech, ITTF Foundation Director, said. “This will continue a string of fantastic, supportive hosts that are working to make these championships the best ever.”
Scientific research shows that regular table tennis practice improves all players’ social, mental, and physical well-being. Specifically, the sport has beneficial effects on people affected by cognitive disorders, including Parkinson’s disease, with the appropriate levels of physical and mental demands to help cope with the degenerative effects of their condition.
The ITTF Foundation is looking forward to building on the success of the 2021 edition of the World Parkinson’s Championships. Held in Berlin, Germany, in partnership with the YUVEDO Foundation, the event set new standards and was nominated for multiple Sports Business Awards in 2022.
Through the ITTF Foundation helping organise the event, the goal is to improve upon the 2021 edition and showcase our hosts and the players coming to Greece. Improving health outcomes for those who play table tennis worldwide is just one of the five pillars of programmes the ITTF Foundation is a part of.
The island of Crete is ideal for hosting the event due to the local entities' support, the size of the venue, its adaptability to the requirements of the World Parkinson’s Championships, the quality of accommodation and the close distance to the arena, and the potential to create sustainable and positive environmental impact and legacy.
Crete 2023 will take place in the Two Aorakia (Heraklion) and aims for two objectives: Use table tennis events to increase the awareness of possibilities for people with a disease and present table tennis as a part of a sustainable healthy lifestyle.
By continuing to ensure that athletes with Parkinson’s get access to high-quality competition, the World Parkinson’s Championships furthers the ITTF’s mandate of promoting the sport of table tennis to the widest possible audience.
Promoting the benefits of table tennis for those with Parkinson’s is just one way the ITTF Foundation can continue its mission.
The event will be held in November 2023 in Crete. Athletes from more than 50 countries and territories will compete in the event.
“I would like to thank the ITTF Foundation for giving us the chance to host such an important event.” Mr. Konstantinos Papageorgiou, the President of the Hellenic Table Tennis Federation, commented. “We will do our best to offer these life fighters and probably their friends and families the chance to enjoy the tournament and the time they will spend in our country for the moment they will arrive till their departure. I also hope many more Parkinson patients find out the benefits of our sport through this event. We are looking forward to welcoming everyone to the beautiful island of Crete.”