Wheelchair basketball was one of the foundation sports on the Paralympic program in Rome in 1960. Today, it continues to be one of the most popular sports at the Paralympic Games.
To be eligible, athletes must have have an objective and measurable permanent physical impairment in their lower limbs which prevents them from running, jumping and pivoting as an able-bodied player. Players are assigned a point value from 1.0 to 4.5 – according to their level of physical function.
A team must not exceed 14.0 points for the five players on court. This ensures that each player has an integral role to play in the team structure, regardless of the degree of their impairment. Observed trunk movements and stability during actual basketball participation, not medical diagnosis form the basis of player classification.
- Mens 12 Team Tournament
- Womens 10 Team Tournament
Who is eligible for Wheelchair Basketball? Athletes with a physical impairment that impacts upon their lower limbs, such as spinal cord or nerve damage, limb loss or limb deficiency (above or below knee), cerebral palsy or other similar impairment.
What are the classes? Athletes are classified into one of 8 classes depending on their functional ability. Classes range from 1.0 – 4.5 points.
How do I get a classification? Request a classification using the Get classified form.
Classification Rules, Forms, Policies and Procedures: View International and National Wheelchair Basketball Classification resources.
Rules & Equipment
The field of play intended for wheelchair basketball matches has no differences compared to that of Olympic basketball. It is a rectangular hard surface 28 metres long and 15 metres wide. For official national and international matches, a wooden floor is required.
The ball must be an approved single shade of orange with eight traditionally shaped panels and black seams. The outer surface is made of leather, synthetic leather, rubber or synthetic material. The ball may have a circumference of 74.9 to 78cm and weight between 567 to 650gr.
The wheelchair is considered to be part of the player. It has either three or four wheels – i.e. two large wheels at the back and one or two small wheels at the front of the chair. The wheelchair may also have one or two anti-tip devices utilising no more than a total of two small castors attached to either the frame or the rear axle and located at the rear of the wheelchair. The tyres may be of any colour as long as they do not mark the floor. All competition chairs must meet the specifications set by the IWBF.