Wheelchair Tennis: How it Started and Why You Should Play
Brad Parks, the founding father of wheelchair tennis, started the official Paralympic sport in 1976 when he first hit a tennis ball. Upon this, he realized the potential the sport could have for the disabled community. Sixteen years later, the ITF International Tennis Tour started with 11 international tournaments. Today, the very popular and ever-growing sport has 160 tournaments all over the world.
Wheelchair Tennis Rules
The game is played on a regular tennis court with almost all the same rules. Written into the official rules of tennis, the “Two-Bounce Rule” allows the ball to bounce twice before being able to hit toward your opponent as opposed to one bounce. Specialty wheelchairs are specifically made and used to give the players a boost of agility around the court. There is a singles and doubles division for men, women and quads,for quadriplegic players allowed to tape the tennis racquet to their hand.
About the International Tennis Tour
The ITF Wheelchair International Tennis Tour also competes in the famous grand slam tournaments, also called the Majors, around the world. The US Open, Wimbledon, Roland Garros, and Australian Open all have wheelchair tennis as apart of its competition for tennis fans of all mobile abilities to enjoy.
Inspired to take up the active sport of tennis? Research your local tennis wheelchair facilities and look into some lessons.There are specially trained wheelchair tennis coaches and lessons available all around the United States.Tennis allows you to get involved in your community, stay active and, most importantly,have fun! Whether you’re into singles or team-pairing doubles, the game of tennis is fit for a wide variety of people.
The National Mobility Equipment Dealers Association (NMEDA) is an advocate for mobility and accessibility for drivers with disabilities. If you need help with converting or buying a handicap accessible car, truck or van, please consider one of our mobility equipment dealers.