A new fitness centre has been opened in Pyeongchang ahead of the Paralympics ©Pyeongchang2018

A new fitness centre for winter sports athletes with disabilities has opened in Pyeongchang ahead of the 2018 Winter Paralympics in South Korea.

The venue at the Alpensia resort, which will host biathlon and cross-country skiing at the Games, will help the country's athletes prepare for the action on home territory.

According to Yonhap, the centre features 70 pieces of gym equipment as well as a physiotherapy room.

A ceremony held to mark the opening was attended by Kim Sung-il, the President of South Korea's Paralympic Committee, as well as other officials in Korean Para sports.

"With the Pyeongchang Paralympics, we'll have a chance to further develop our winter sports," Kim said.

The centre is located at the Alpensia ski resort
The centre is located at the Alpensia ski resort ©Getty Images

"I hope you will all put your heart into realising your dreams in Pyeongchang in 2018."

The opening comes after the International Paralympic Committee urged organisers to raise greater awareness of Para athletes in South Korea in the build-up to the Games.

IPC chief executive Xavier Gonzalez stressed the need for more to be done to raise awareness after research indicated that knowledge of Paralympic athletes and winter sport remained low in the country.

An IPC delegation which visited Pyeongchang last month declared that “overall planning and preparations for the Games is progressing well".