What is wheelchair tennis?

Wheelchair tennis provides persons with disabilities the opportunity to play recreational tennis with their peers and family, whether able-bodied or disabled. Playing wheelchair tennis increases fitness and provides opportunities to socialize with other athletes. Proficient wheelchair users can play and actively compete against stand-up players.

Wheelchair tennis is played on a standard tennis court and follows many of the same rules as tennis. However, in wheelchair tennis, a player is allowed to let the ball bounce twice, not once, before hitting a return shot. Also, the athlete's wheelchair is considered to be a part of the body, so rules applying to the player's body apply to the chair.

Who is a wheelchair tennis athlete?

Wheelchair tennis is designed for male and female athletes of all ages with physical disabilities such as amputation/limb loss and spinal cord injury. A wheelchair tennis athlete who plays competitively must have a medically diagnosed, mobility-related disability with a substantial or total loss of function in one or more extremities.

A quad wheelchair tennis player must meet the criteria for permanent physical disability as defined above.  In addition, the player must have permanent physical disability that results in a substantial loss of function in one or both upper extremities.

Turnstone’s tennis program

Annual Tennis Clinic:

The Annual Tennis Clinic is held in May and provides an opportunity for athletes to learn or review the sport and rules, practice skills, and enjoy actual playing time. The clinic is designed for beginners to advanced players ages 8 and older.

Summer tennis programs:

•  Basic Tennis 101: Participants learn the sport of tennis including skill development and the rules while still having fun with peers.
•  Intermediate Tennis: Participants learn to perfect their techniques, strategy, and their overall game with opportunities to play recreationally or competitively.
•  Competitive Tennis: This program is designed for the athlete who will compete in one or more Midwest wheelchair tennis tournaments over the summer. This program focuses on skill evaluation, modification and techniques to prepare for competition. Turnstone has hosted a wheelchair tennis tournament annually since 2008 and there are three to four additional tournaments in the Midwest each summer.

Want to learn more?

For more information about Turnstone’s wheelchair tennis program, contact Kevin Hughes, Sports & Recreation Coordinator, at (260) 969-7654 or kevin@turnstone.org.