Rules to play Wheelchair Tennis
When learning the basics of tennis, an everyday wheelchair can suffice, but as players become serious about the sport, most opt to invest in a wheelchair made for court sports. A sports chair provides a player more agility, faster response and turning quickness. The difference between a sports chair and a standard chair is its very lightweight. With no armrests, no brakes, no push handles, essentially nothing to get in the way of the swing, said Munn. Sports chairs typically have only one front caster, similar to a roller blade, he said. There is also an anti tip wheel in the rear that is sometimes used to help power a serve. Some newer models now have two front casters and or anti tippers. The large wheels of the chair are cambered to allow a quicker turning radius.
But a beginner doesnt need a sports chair right away. Its a big investment. Usually the wheelchair athlete will play for one to two years before they make the purchase. They get more involved, depending on their commitment level and have learned what specifics they want on their own sports chair, said Munn.
Munn added that amputees can also play wheelchair tennis, as long as it is in the chair.
We dont require anyone be in a chair for all activities, Munn said. Sometimes an amputee is ambulatory but will use the chair for play. The only requirement to be a wheelchair player is that you cannot play able bodied tennis.
Many of Gaylords patients have gotten interested in playing the game after watching the Hornets practice on Gaylords courts. The team practices one to two times per week and plays competitively throughout the country.