“Your ears only hear a tone. So the tone is stronger to your left or your right. You don’t know that until you wave the rifle around to find it.” I, for one, am not a big fan of anyone waving a rifle around. Still, you gotta give the visually-impaired athletes credit for choosing biathlon, a sport that combines cross-country skiing and target shooting. The winnipegfreepress.com gives us the low-down on the technology required. “For the shooting, visually impaired skiers use a special rifle with a infra-red beam that converts light into sound. The rifle is hard-wired to a computer. ‘You put the headset on,’ said [visually impaired cross-country skier Brian] McKeever. ‘You cycle the action on the rifle and it beeps faster and faster with a higher and higher pitch the closer you are to the centre (of the target). You are listing for the solid, high-pitched tone.'” Then BLAM! OK, plink. Anyway, sounds like fun! “Blind biathlon is a bit of an oxymoron, isn’t it?” joked McKeever. “The first time I heard about it I laughed.” So, is it OK for us to laugh too?


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