The Paralympics have grown from a small collection of British World War II veterans in 1948 to the second-largest international sport event in 2008.
The formal explanation of the term "Paralympic" is that it derives from the Greek preposition παρά, pará ("beside" or "alongside") and thus refers to a competition held in parallel with the Olympic Games. The Summer Games of 1988 held in Seoul was the first time the term "Paralympic" came into official use.
Two British athletes competed, both in alpine skiing events, and no medals were won. The size of the team was a decrease from that which had entered previous Games, in the 1998 Winter Paralympics 20 British athletes had participated. One reason for this is that whilst funding for the two athletes was provided by the British Paralympic Association, it totalled only £1,500 compared to the £4 million worth of funding available to British athletes at the 2002 Winter Olympics.