Across the globe approximately 100,000 people play Wheelchair basketball from recreational to elite levels. Wheelchair basketball is one of the original Paralympic sports and first emerged around 1946 in the USA. Wheelchair basketball was developed by injured servicemen from World War II that were former able-bodied players that wanted to continue playing their sport of basketball.
The object of the game is to score the most points in the opposing team’s basket, just like able-bodied basketball. Players must not ‘travel’ with the ball and are required to throw or bounce the ball after every two pushes of their wheelchair. The team with the most points at the end of the game, wins.
Any player who is not able to play basketball standing up due to a physical disability is eligible to play Wheelchair basketball, although some players do not use wheelchairs in their daily lives.
At the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games, 263 Para athletes from 15 countries competed in 2 different medal events.
For more information on Wheelchair basketball visit the International Wheelchair basketball Federation.
In New Zealand, Wheelchair basketball is currently played widely at the community level, with opportunities to progress to the International level. Register your interest now!