How do you get started?
Just call a friend, pick up a racquet and some balls and head down to your local park. Or just contact your local provincial wheelchair sports association for information on beginner programs. Find your provincial wheelchair sports association. You can also contact us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Get a racquet and some balls – most sporting goods or department stores carry inexpensive racquets (around $20) and balls ($5 for a can). That’s all you need! No shoulder padding, no face masks, no team jersey required.
Who can play
Anybody with a permanent mobility related physical disability can enter a sanctioned tournament. Check out the International Tennis Federation’s (ITF) full eligibility criteria as well as the latest wheelchair tennis rules and regulations.
The beauty of wheelchair tennis is that you can play with your able-bodied family and friends as well as other wheelchair players. Under the rules of tennis, the wheelchair players are permitted two bounces and the able-bodied players one but when you are practicing you can play to your own rules to suit the standard of the players on the court.
When you start playing you do not require a sports wheelchair. You can play in a day chair. You may wish to strap yourself into the chair to improve your stability. Straps can be used around the waist, knees and ankles, depending on the player’s balance. Many tetraplegics and quadriplegics play tennis by strapping/taping the racquet to their hand.
Click here for a guide that will help you with set up and maintenance of your tennis chair.
Find a court
You can contact Tennis Canada or your Provincial Wheelchair Sports Association to find out which facilities are accessible. Or you can go along to your local courts and discuss with whoever runs them how they could be made accessible for you to play.
You can even play at your local gym on a basketball or volleyball court! Portable tennis nets make tennis a truly mobile sport that can be enjoyed virtually anywhere.
If you want advice on access you can contact us at email@example.com.