Wheelchair Tennis Classification Rules to become more sport specific

An independent working group of experts and medical professionals, tasked by the ITF to review the current Minimum Impairment Criteria (MIC) within the ITF’s Wheelchair Tennis Classification Rules, has delivered its final report which has now been approved by the ITF Board and the International Paralympic Committee’s (IPC) Classification Committee.

The ITF has previously stated its commitment to ensuring that wheelchair tennis has a fair and robust classification system that is based on the latest scientific evidence and reflects the modern and professional nature of the sport. Classification rules for wheelchair tennis have previously been based on the system used for para-athletics, but as the sport continues to grow as a major Paralympic sport, there is an increasing need to revise the rules and move towards a system that is both compliant with the IPC code and sport-specific.

The working group, led by Professor Babette Pluim, conducted the review in consultation with players, national associations, and other key stakeholders within the wheelchair tennis community. The objective of the group was to review the current MIC and deliver recommendations for changes that would ensure the MIC are fit-for-purpose and sport-specific to wheelchair tennis.

The changes to the MIC will come into effect from 1 January 2022 and any impacted players will be reassessed against the new criteria by the end of 2021.

The report can be read here.