- Published on 03 February 2015
Like mainstream tennis, Special Olympics Tennis gives athletes the opportunity to learn and perform a variety of skills that can be played throughout life. InTennis addition to offering traditional singles and doubles events, Special Olympics offers individual skills competition to allow athletes to train and compete in basic tennis skills. The development of these key skills is necessary prior to advancing to match play. These skills include racket bounce, "ups," forehand volley, backhand ground stroke, serve-deuce court, serve-advantage court and alternating ground stroke with movement.
Special Olympics athletes can also participate in Unified Sports® doubles events. Special Olympics Unified Sports is a program that combines Special Olympics athletes and athletes without intellectual disabilities (partners) on sports teams for training and competition. In Unified Sports Tennis, a doubles team would consist of one Special Olympics athlete and one partner.
As in all Special Olympics sports, athletes are grouped in competition divisions according to ability level, age and gender.
Tennis became an official Special Olympics sport in 1987.
135 athletes from 23 Programs competed in Tennis at the 1999 Special Olympics World Summer Games.
127 athletes from 29 Programs competed in tennis at the 2003 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Dublin, Ireland.
Today 869Special Olympics athletes from SOMENA compete in tennis.
Unified Sports Doubles
The following tennis events provide meaningful competition for athletes with lower ability levels:
Individual Skills Competition