Coach Manoj Soma training wheelchair basketball to students of Amar Jyothi School, Delhi

Coach Manoj Soma training wheelchair basketball to students of Amar Jyothi School, Delhi. Also in pic: Former India captain and Asian All-Star Jayasankar Menon

Workshops on Wheelchair Basketball and Boccia being held in five locations in India this month

 New Delhi, 7th December 2014: The Wheelchair Basketball Federation of India, in collaboration with Choice International, the International Red Cross and other partners, is conducting workshops on Wheelchair Basketball and Boccia for disabled persons in five locations in India from 5th-24th December 2014.

The workshops are free of cost and are being conducted by international coaches from around the world. Mr. Mark Walker from Australia, Mr. Jess from the USA, Mr. Mike from Nepal, Mr. Manoj Soma from the United Kingdom and Mr. Aram Voerman from the Netherlands are the international coaches involved in this initiative. Former Captain of the Indian National Basketball Team and Asian All-Star, Mr. Jayasankar Menon, is also extending his support to the initiative.

The workshops were inaugurated at the Indian Spinal Injuries Centre (ISIC) in Vasant Kunj, New Delhi on the 5th of December 2014. The Chairman of the ISIC, Maj. HPS Ahluwalia was present at the inauguration and said, “While Wheelchair Basketball is one of the leading international paralympic sports, it is hardly played in our country. We need to promote the sport not only to create professional sportspersons but also for rehabilitating people with disability.”

The workshops aim to increase awareness on the positive impact of disability sports, specifically Wheelchair Basketball and Boccia, among disabled persons in India. The workshops specifically target the disabled persons, coaches, community leaders, referees, physiotherapists interested in disability sports. The organisers seek to use disability sports as a tool to promote equality and access to disabled persons and also, to develop and train disabled sportspersons to enable them to compete at national and international disability sports tournaments.

The workshops will cover various areas on Wheelchair Basketball such as the fundamentals (basic basketball skills with an introduction to the rules of the game), contact, stretching, basic chair skills, ball handling and passing.

The workshops will be rounded off by a mini-tournament in Chennai with the best wheelchair basketball players selected from the workshops competing against each other.

The schedule of the workshops and the mini-tournament is below:

Delhi – Indian Spinal Injuries Centre, Vasant Kunj, New Delhi – 5th-10th December 2014

Amar Jyothi Charitable Trust, New Delhi – 8th-9th December 2014

Kerala – Mar Athanasius College of Engineering, Cochin – 12th-13th December 2014

Pune – Paraplegic Rehabilitation Centre, Kirkee, Pune – 12th-13th December 2014

Karnataka – Kanteerava Stadium, Bangalore – 14th-15th December 2014

Chennai – Jawaharlal Nehru Indoor Stadium – 15th-24th December 2014

About Wheelchair Basketball

Wheelchair Basketball is practiced in nearly 100 countries as a fully competitive sport and is recognised at the Paralympic level. Initially a rehabilitation and recreational activity for spinal cord injured patients, it embraces a wide range of physical impairments including paraplegics, spina bifida, amputees, brittle bones, cerebral palsy and multiple sclerosis. It is designed for athletes who have a physical impairment or disability that prevents running, jumping and pivoting. The measurements of the court and the height of the baskets are the same as in able-bodied basketball and each teams consist of 5 players. It is played by men and women alike.

About the Wheelchair Basketball Federation of India 

The Wheelchair Basketball Federation of India (WBFI) is the governing body for wheelchair basketball in India and is responsible for promotion of the sport at all levels in India. The WBFI hopes to break down barriers to self-belief and prejudices against disability by helping each participant to push their boundaries to foster self-improvement and to showcase their abilities, whether they be leadership, social or competitive. WBFI aims to increase disabled people’s inclusion in society through participation in sport. More information at http://www.wbfi.org.in

About Choice International

Choice International is a UK based, not-for-profit, international development organisation promoting Corporate Social Responsibility, Diversity and Inclusion in the UK and Overseas. The founders of Choice International are passionate about equality and diversity, throughout their successful careers in this field of work they have felt a great need to develop innovative solutions and sustainable projects for social issues in the UK and overseas.

Vishnu Ravi Shankar
Leave a reply

Leave a Reply