Watch: Age no barrier as elderly enjoy special Olympics in Belgium

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By Euronews  with Reuters
Events included archery and relay races
Events included archery and relay races   -   Copyright  Reuters

Brussels' King Baudouin national stadium played host to the Olympics for Seniors on Thursday, with 148 locals competing in events from relay races to archery.

The field was packed, with 12 old people's homes taking part in the competition, which has been organised annually by Brussels city hall since 2017.

The event is designed to encourage elderly people to play sports, as the age of the average Belgian increases, according to a recent study by KU Leuven university.

Despite their age, the competitors demonstrated considerable stamina – the final relay race had been re-run several times before the athletes could be persuaded to sit down for tea and cake. True to the Olympic ethos, it was the taking part rather than the winning which counted, and all participants were awarded a medal.

Competing athlete Christian Preud'homme was pleased with his performance, saying: "I didn't too badly! I'm happy. Each time they organise an event, I love to participate, because it's a different atmosphere."

King Baudouin Stadium is home to the Belgian national football team, the Red Devils, and has a capacity of more than 50,000.

Video editor • Nicolas Coquet