Adaptive Standing Tennis: A New Way to Play 

USTA Adaptive Tennis Committee | March 01, 2019

A new way to play tennis has been taking shape and gaining interest in the United States over the past several years: Adaptive Standing Tennis.


This category of tennis is for individuals with a physical disability such as amputees, Cerebral Palsy or hemi-paralysis (individuals who have suffered a stroke) who wish to play ambulatory tennis instead of using a wheelchair. In 2016, Houston hosted the first International tournament, the US TAP Open, to show off this category of play at its highest level. TAP is the abbreviation for the Spanish expression for playing from the foot up, or standing.


For the next three years Houston continued to host the tournament, with the third annual US TAP Open taking place in December of 2018. Each year the event saw new competitors, new organizers and an increase in spectators from the tennis community. As a result, new programs, as well as additional tournaments, have been scheduled around the United States, beginning with one held at Purdue University in August of 2018. 


There are five scheduled tournaments to take place in the United States in 2019. 


They are: 

  • Greensboro, NC, April 26-28
  • Indy Open, June 14-16 
  • Spartan Showdown at Michigan State University, August 23-25 
  • the Phoenix Open, November 8-10
  • International World Championship US TAP Open returns to Houston, December 6-8


While tournaments and clinics are scheduled and in the works, the USTA is working on how to best assist the growth and development of this category of play in the United States. Two of the athletes who play high-level tennis despite each having only one leg will show off their skills at this year’s USTA Annual Meeting in Austin, Texas. They hope the future of Adaptive Standing Tennis will be solidified with this exposure.



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