OXFORD, Miss. - Members of the Ole Miss tennis teams along with members of the University community, including Chancellor Daniel Jones, participated in a wheelchair tennis exhibition and clinic at the Gillom Sports Center on Tuesday (Oct. 22).
The exhibition was sponsored by Student Disability Services and the Exercise Science department and featured members of the USA national wheelchair tennis team as well as some of their coaches.
"It was a very different tennis experience," said men's tennis senior Johan Backstrom. "It's very different in terms of how you have to move and how you have to time everything to be able to hit as good a shot as possible. It was also very interesting to hear about the different types of injuries, and depending how severe the injury is you are limited in how high a level you can play and it limits what you can or can't do. It was also interesting to learn about the wheelchair and the type of chair you have to use depending on the injury."
Geoff Norton, a member of the USTA Player Services group in the Southern section shared that wheel chair tennis is very popular globally and that there are even several colleges with wheelchair tennis teams. This exhibition and clinic came about from a wheelchair basketball event that was put on last spring on campus.
"This experience came from Jasmine Townsend and her husband, who did a wheelchair basketball event here last year. They reached out to us and we decided to do it," said Norton. "There is a local tennis community here that is very active and everyone came together and collaborated. Wheelchair tennis is enormous worldwide. The USA is a part of it, but it's grown into international competition with wheelchair draws at most of the major international tennis competitions."
"We have some players here to give the true player perspective. It's nice to be able to come out for the awareness. The athletes learn what it's like for an athlete in the chair because there is a difference in an everyday chair and a sport chair. We really wanted to bring about some education and awareness about the sport, especially when you get someone in the chair. There are some unique things about being in a chair but tennis is tennis," said Norton.
The women's tennis team also participated in the event and was able to get in chairs and experience tennis in a different way than they are used to everyday at practice or in competition.
"It was a lot of fun, but also a lot harder," said sophomore Allie Robbins. "It was different and made me think differently than when I regularly play. Coach (Mark Beyers) always talks about `cutting off the angle' and it really hit home today when I had to think about turning the chair and cutting off the angle. It was a good experience."
Men's coach Billy Chadwick thought the experience was great for the teams and the tennis community.
"This is tennis in a different way and it's really interesting learning the technique and the strategies that go into wheelchair tennis," said Chadwick. "It's fascinating to learn what the different injuries mean and how they have to adjust the chairs and how they play. It's really been a fantastic experience for myself and the players."
The mission of Ole Miss' Rebel Ready Program is to challenge the student-athletes to be lifelong learners while pursuing continuous improvement academically, relationally, socially, personally, and professionally during and beyond their careers as student-athletes.
Rebel Ready is the hub for a wide range of Ole Miss Athletics sponsored programs designed to meet the needs of student-athletes and their families. It is divided into six areas: Student-Athlete Assistance Services, Career Development, Continuing Education, Community Outreach, Financial Education and Career Transition.
Visit Rebel Ready for more information on Ole Miss' Rebel Ready program.
For the second straight year, Ole Miss' Deterrian Shackelford (Decatur, Alabama) has been nominated for the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team®, which is one of the most coveted and prestigious off-... Read More [+]
Ole Miss baseball player Brady Bramlett was selected to represent the Southeastern Conference as a member of the NCAA Division I Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC). Bramlett's appointment... Read More [+]
The Ole Miss head track coach Brian O'Neal and assistant coach Greg Stringer opened up the Manning Center for the participants in Ole Miss' Horizons Summer Learning program on Wednesday (July 9).... Read More [+]
Mary Ashton Nall grew up around intercollegiate athletics, specifically college football. Her father, Hugh, played football at Georgia and coached at Ole Miss and Auburn. From competing in the NCAA... Read More [+]
Through the Rebel Relief Project, Ole Miss fans and area residents will have the opportunity to donate household and clothing items for tornado victims across Mississippi at various locations in... Read More [+]
The Ole Miss Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC), is partnering with Purshoeing Joy to collect used shoes for children in Guatemala. SAAC members will be collecting shoes at Friday's (April... Read More [+]
Only 50 days until The Grove is full, the constant shouts of "Hotty Toddy" are in the air, and football kicks off 100 years in Vaught-Hemingway Stadium! Looking forward to this upcoming college football season, seven Rebels were named to... read more
As we near the 2015 college football season, national organizations have started to release watch lists for their respective awards. Through the first week of watch lists being released, multiple Rebels have been announced as players that fans need to... read more
Along with head coach Hugh Freeze, three Rebels will represent Ole Miss at the annual SEC Football Media Days next week. Junior Evan Engram, just named to the John Mackey Award Watch List for college football's most outstanding tight end,... read more
Five Ole Miss Rebels were chosen as preseason All-SEC selections by some of the people who work closest with the student-athletes, the football media relations directors. The 14 football media relations directors of the Southeastern Conference institutions voted in the... read more
The preseason accolades just don't stop for the Ole Miss football team. Everywhere you look, Rebels can be found on preseason All-America teams. Lindy's Sports recognized seven Rebels for preseason honors, including four All-Americans. Four Ole Miss Football Rebels were... read more
With the season just 74 days away, members of the 2015 Ole Miss football team continue to earn recognition on Preseason All-America lists. Athlon Sports, the latest media outlet to release its 2015 college football preseason All-America team, gave five... read more
Preseason All-America football teams continue to roll in, and Ole Miss has been well represented each time.Today, the Sporting News unveiled its preseason All-America first and second teams, which includes a total of four Rebels.OT Laremy Tunsil and DT Robert... read more
Individual preseason accolades continue to pile up for the Ole Miss football team as college football magazines look toward the 2015 season. Athlon Sports is the latest magazine to release its preseason all-conference teams, June 10; the magazine named nine... read more
The start of summer heat and vacations is also the start of another tradition - preseason college football magazines.One of the first to produce a magazine every year is Phil Steele, whose 2015 version includes about as many Ole Miss... read more
Although they will not begin competing for the Rebels until the fall, several members of the 2015 signing class have arrived at Ole Miss to begin their college journey this summer. The first of two summer sessions offered at the... read more
Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewApril 28-May 4, 2015Baseball - The Rebels started the week defeating the Bulldogs, 11-1 in the annual Governor's Cup. The 10-run win for the Rebels marked the largest margin of victory in the 36-year history... read more
Welcome to Pittsburgh...and welcome to #SteelersNation, @Quez_G! #SteelersDraft pic.twitter.com/oY8wZc10Kk-- Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) May 2, 2015 Congrats Senquez Golson! Drafted 56th overall in the 2015 #NFLDRAFT by the Pittsburgh Steelers. #HottyToddy #FinsUp pic.twitter.com/EPGayDNOu7-- Ole Miss Football (@OleMissFB) May 2, 2015 Ole... read more
Six men with ties to Ole Miss were part of the inaugural class of 25 athletes and coaches inducted into the Scott County Hall of Fame this past Saturday at Roosevelt State Park in Morton. It is believed that this... read more
In a tie for 7th place at 7-under, @OleMissFB takes home $30,000 in charity and scholarship. #CFAPBGolf pic.twitter.com/qd0JzilyYR-- #CFAPBGolf (@CFAPeachBowl) April 28, 2015 The Ole Miss team of head football coach Hugh Freeze and Sean Tuohy turned in a strong... read more