Wheelchair Basketball - Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago

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Contact the RIC
Adaptive Sports and
Fitness Program

312-238-5001
312-238-5017 (Fax)

sports@ric.org

RIC Adaptive Sports and Fitness Program
541 North Fairbanks
Mezzanine Level
Chicago, IL 60611 

Office Hours

Monday–Friday
6:15 a.m.–7: 00 p.m.

Wheelchair Basketball

RIC Sports offers three cross-disability wheelchair basketball programs:

  • Wheelchair Basketball – RIC Hornets
  • Women's Wheelchair Basketball – RIC Sky
  • Junior Wheelchair Basketball

All basketball programs are affiliated with the National Wheelchair Basketball Association and are played in accordance with NCAA rules, with a few exceptions that are outlined by the NWBA. Wheelchair basketball retains a 10-foot basketball hoop and standard basketball court. The exceptions are rules that have been modified with consideration of the wheelchair. For example, “travelling” in wheelchair basketball occurs when the athlete touches their wheelchairs more than twice after receiving or dribbling the ball.

The NWBA is composed of over 200 basketball teams across twenty-two conferences and seven divisions. The NWBA was founded in 1948, and today consists of men's, women's, intercollegiate, and youth teams throughout the United States of America and Canada.

The RIC basketball programs all participate in tournaments and competitions throughout the Midwest and regional tournaments around the country with the ultimate goal of qualification to the National Wheelchair Basketball Championships. Junior basketball players may participate on adult teams and women are welcome to participate on the Hornets team.

All athletes must be registered with the RIC Adapted Sports and Fitness Program in order to participate.

Junior Wheelchair Basketball – Chicago Skyhawks

When:

Saturdays, 9:00 a.m.–1:00 p.m.

Where:

Rainbow Beach Park, 3111 E. 77th St. , Chicago, IL

Season:

October–March

Contact:

Trent Thenhaus, 312-238-5011 or email tthenhaus@ric.org

Dan Ferreira, 312-742-5670 or email Daniel.Ferreira@chicagoparkdistrict.com

RIC together with the Chicago Park District (CPD) offers 8½-foot and 10-foot junior basketball teams!

The Chicago Skyhawks Junior wheelchair basketball teams are a developmental basketball program for youth with physical disabilities. Each child will participate in a designed sports wheelchair to equalize the playing field for each athlete that participates. Kids participate in one of two teams based on their age and ability level.

Our young, developing kids will play in the prep division on an 8½-foot basket in a smaller, more concentrated game. As the kids develop, they will then graduate to the 10-foot basketball league. Each division will be recreational and competitive.

The junior basketball program will promote growth in fundamental skills of basketball while teaching each athlete the life skills of sportsmanship, hard work, dedication, friendships, and acceptance to their abilities. Open to youth ages five years of age through high-school seniors. The Chicago Skyhawks teams will participate in local area tournaments with the goal of reaching the National Wheelchair Basketball Tournament.

If you are interested in joining the Chicago Skyhawks Junior Basketball program or would like more information, call Trent Thenhaus at 312-238-5011 or email tthenhaus@ric.org. All participants must be registered with RIC and the Chicago Park District to play.

Wheelchair Basketball – RIC Hornets

When:

Tuesdays, 6:00 – 10:00 p.m.

Where:

S.J. Gregory Auditorium, 5649 N. Sheridan Rd., Chicago, IL

Season:

September–April

Contact:

Trent Thenhaus 312-238-5011 or email tthenhaus@ric.org

The RIC Hornets are broken up into two divisions within the NWBA championship and division III. The RIC championship teams are ranked in the top 10 nationally and the Division III program is the developmental feeder program to the championship division. The teams compete in tournaments locally and nationally. If you are interested in playing with any of the RIC basketball teams, contact Trent Thenhaus at 312-238-5011 to register.

Women interested in playing welcome to join the Hornets too

Women's Wheelchair Basketball - RIC Sky

When:

Tuesdays 6:00–8:00 p.m. (SJ Gregory Auditorium)

Where:

SJ Gregory Auditorium, 5658 N. Sheridan Ave., Chicago (combined practice with RIC Hornets)

Season:

September–March

Contact:

Trent Thenhaus 312-238-5011 or tthenhaus@ric.org

The RIC Sky is the only women's wheelchair basketball team in the Chicago area. Part of the WNBA Chicago Sky family, the Sky aims to spread the game of basketball to girls and women throughout the Chicago area. Both organizations strive to educate and encourage girls and young women to participate in competitive and recreational sports, including young women with a physical disability. The Sky plays local games against men's teams and travel outside of the Chicagoland area to women's tournaments. The Sky is a member of the women's division of the National Wheelchair Basketball Association.