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Paralympian Profile

Glenn Barnes #74

Glenn Barnes, New Zealand Paralympian in Wheelchair tennis game

Proudly from Green Island in Dunedin, Otago, Glenn became paraplegic after a private motor vehicle accident and then found Wheelchair tennis. Glenn has been New Zealand’s number 1 singles and doubles player for the majority of his sporting career starting in the late 1980s. He has competed at the highest level on the I.T.F Tour and was selected to be part of the New Zealand Paralympic Team at the Barcelona 1992 and Athens 2004 Paralympic Games. He also contributed to qualify New Zealand in Wheelchair tennis at the Sydney 2000 Paralympic Games but could unfortunately not attend due to health issues.

Glenn has also assisted in the development of other Wheelchair tennis players, through his work with Canterbury and New Zealand Wheelchair Tennis. He has volunteered his time to coach and train with other players, aiming to develop the depth of players in New Zealand.

Former army private, Glenn who now lives in Christchurch, is still competing, representing his country at the New Zealand Defence Force Team at the Invictus Games, winning gold in rowing in 2016 (being the first participant in the NZDF Invictus team 2016 to win a gold medal in any event) and a total of 3 silver in Wheelchair tennis and rowing in 2016 and 2017. Glenn has also played Wheelchair basketball at a regional, national and international level, for Otago and Canterbury teams in the last 20 years. 

Glenn holds a BRS in landscape management, a diploma of horticultural management and a diploma in Social Services. 

Humble man, Glenn considers that he has always tried to be ‘a journey man in many things, brilliant at nothing, definitely not a role model for people with disabilities’. 

Glenn says “Playing Wheelchair tennis has provided me with the self-esteem and the skills needed to handle life after my accident. In essence it is about my attitude to overcome failure. My tennis intelligence and experience has allowed me to make better decisions and improve my abilities even further”.

Paralympic Results
Paralympic GamesResult
Athens 2004
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Barcelona 1992
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