Enjoy Tennis for players with a disability at Shankill Tennis Club

Shankill Tennis Club believes tennis should be accessible to all. The Club is committed to its disability tennis programme which is run as part of Tennis Ireland’s, Enjoy Tennis programme.

If you are a tennis player with a disability interested in any of our programmes, we would love to hear from you. You can also pay and play as a member of the public, or check out our membership page for information on how to become a member of our club.

The Programme started in the club in 2014 with groups from Festina Lente and Carmona Services, local organisations that provide services to people with intellectual disabilities.

In 2016 when we opened the new Indoor Centre with great support from Dun Laoghaire Rathdown CC and the Sports Capital Programme, this allowed the club to widen the number of disabilities that we can provide for and also to allow the existing groups to train all year round.

Since then, the programme has grown and the Club has welcomed players with a range of disabilities, including Acquired Brain Injury, Blind / Vision Impaired, Dementia, Intellectual Disability and Autism and Wheelchair Users.

Our coaching team and the volunteers who assist them have been a particularly important part of the success of this Programme at the Club and we would like to thank the coaches and all the volunteers for their efforts.

Find out more about the various groups playing at the Club below. Please contact Liam O’Donohoe at odonohoeliam@gmail.com if you would like to find out more taking part in these sessions

Blind / Vision Impaired

The club introduced Blind Tennis to Ireland in conjunction with Vision Sports Ireland (NCBI).  The club has hosted the Blind Tennis World Championships which included teams from almost 20 countries.

Two sessions run every Sunday morning one for Juniors at 9am and one for seniors at 11am.

This programme is hugely important to everyone at the Club. Find out more about it here .

Acquired Brain Injury (ABI)

At the National Rehabilitation Hospital, the coaches work with players who have an ABI as part of their rehab programme. The Occupational Therapy team bring patients who have been discharged to coaching in the indoor centre on a weekly basis.

Dementia

St Joseph’s in Shankill is the largest residential service for people with Dementia in Dublin. In 2019 we welcomed a group of residents from St.Joseph’s and their staff to tennis at the club.  This continued up to Covid and now continues online each week.

Intellectual Disability & Autism

This has been a feature of club since we began and continues with Festina Lente on a weekly basis.  We’ve also have players from Sunbeam services and Carmona.

Wheelchair Tennis

The indoor centre’s surfaces are ideal for wheelchair tennis. They make it easier for the players to move the chairs around the court. The club is proud to have Garreth Greene, Ireland’s no1 wheelchair player as a member, who competes on the UNIQLO World Tour.

With support from the Sports Capital Programme the club is purchasing specialist wheelchair tennis chairs for the players to ensure safe play.

For the last couple of years the coaching team have worked with the Physiotherapy Department at the National Rehabilitation Programme where tennis is now established part of their rehab programme for wheelchair users These sessions take place when the players are in patients at the Hospital.

We hope to provide an opportunity for these players to continue their tennis at the indoor centre after their discharge. Utilising the new wheelchairs to enable us to offer this opportunity.