Ever fancied becoming the Tim Henman or Venus Williams of wheelchair tennis? Well if so get your racquet out! That’s what I did two years ago and haven’t looked back!
Wheelchair tennis is played on a regular size court with the net at the standard height………the only rule that is different is that wheelchair players get 2 bounces of the ball before we have to hit it This makes the sport easy to play with able bodied and disabled alike. Wheelchair tennis players are ranked on ability to play tennis rather than their disability. The exception to this rule is Quads who have their own division at tournaments. However, there is no need to take it up professionally! You can simply just get out there and have a game with friends and family.
I was first introduced to the sport after attending some special training weekends that the British Tennis Foundation offer on a yearly basis to introduce new players to the sport. They have one for mixed beginners and one for Ladies only. These weekend camps are at a highly reduced rate and are superb fun! You get to meet lots of new people as well as trying out the sport of tennis and the specialised tennis chairs that you use. I even attempted my first tournament in the same year and although I wasn’t too successful, I had great fun meeting the other players and seeing the top seeds in action.
There are lots of clubs around that cater specifically with training wheelchair players, some of which even have tennis chairs that you can borrow. All you need to do is contact your local tennis centre or the British Tennis Foundation to find out where they are.
So what are you waiting for? Get out there and give it a go!