The Tennis Foundation, a British charity, has completed research in to the health and life outcomes of Wheelchair Tennis and announced those findings on Sunday, saying that Wheelchair Tennis has a positive impact on the life of participants.
The report went beyond just looking at the benefits for the athletes and also looked at the lives of those around the athlete. Findings showed that parents, guardians, coaches, and venue staff are all improved through wheelchair tennis.
ComRes, the research firm in the United Kingdom led the research as they surveyed players at various levels. The key findings are that playing tennis makes the athletes feel more self-confident, happier and less isolated.
That major finding is that 91% of those surveyed who compete in wheelchair tennis said that tennis has had a positive impact on their self-confidence. The Tennis Foundations argues that this shows the positive mental health impact of playing wheelchair tennis.
Other notable findings were that 89% said that wheelchair tennis has had a positive impact on their daily happiness. 84% has stated that playing tennis has had a positive effect on their social support networks, presumably because they are finding new friends due to playing tennis.
There were also a number of impacts looked at as to where athletes feel these improvements to lifestyle. 73% feel less bored and 63% feel less isolated, but on two other measures there was not a lifestyle improvement for the majority 48% say they feel less stressed, and unsurprisingly most do not feel less tired, 33%.
“We are delighted that the research findings from ComRes support our already strong belief that tennis has real health and social benefits for the people who play it.” Said Geoff Newton, the Executive Director of the Tennis Foundation.
The impact on coaches were also looked at with almost all coaches (98%) saying that coaching wheelchair tennis had helped their coaching ability in general. 77% of coaches said that coaching wheelchair tennis had a positive impact on their personal wellbeing and 89% said that it led to getting more involved with the disabled community.
For venue staff there was also positives as they found that those who interact with wheelchair tennis players grow in confidence in interacting with any people who have any kind of disability. The findings will buoy the Tennis Foundation vindicating their involvement in the sport which is sure to continue for many years now.