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Wheelchair basketball is played in accordance with NCAA rules with very few exceptions. These exceptions are:

PLAYER: An individual who, because of permanent, severe leg Disability of paralysis of the lower portion of the body, will benefit through participation in wheelchair basketball and who would be denied the opportunity to play basketball were it not for the wheelchair adaptation, is eligible.

WHEELCHAIR: The height of the seat must not exceed 21″ from rubber foam is permitted (2″ maximum thickness for Class III players and 4″ maximum thickness for all other players). A heel strap of 1’/2″ width (minimum) must be attached to the foot.

CONTACT: The chair is considered part of the player. General rules of contact in regular basketball (charging, blocking, etc.) apply to wheelchair basketball.

TIME LIMITS: An offensive player cannot remain more than 4 seconds in the free throw lane while a player’s team is in possession of the ball.

DRIBBLE: A player in possession of the ball may not push more than twice in succession with one or both hands in either direction without tapping the ball to the floor again. Taking more than two consecutive pushes constitutes a traveling violation. A player may, however, wheel the chair and bounce the ball simultaneously just as an able-bodied player runs and bounces the ball simultaneously.

LOSS OF BALL: If a player in possession of the ball makes any physical contact with the floor or tilts the chair so far forward that the footrest touches the floor it is a violation and the ball is awarded to the other team.

OUT OF BOUNDS: A player is considered out of bounds when any part of the player’s body or wheelchair touches the floor on or outside the boundary.

PHYSICAL ADVANTAGE FOUL: Because of the varying causesrule (rebound, jump ball, etc.) constitutes a physical advantage foul. It is so recorded in the official scorebook. Three such fouls disqualify a player from the game. Two free throws are awarded and the ball is given to the opposing team, out of bounds.

FALLING: If a player falls out of the chair during play, the officials will immediately suspend play if there is any chance of danger to the fallen player. If not, the officials will withhold their until the particular play in progress has been completed. If a player falls out of the chair to gain possession of the ball or if falling keeps opponents from gaining possession.


  • To encourage individuals with more severe disabilities to participate.
  • To extend the opportunities of participation to more individuals.
  • To encourage new teams.
  • To make competition more equitable among existing and new teams.
  • To counter what seems to be a tendency on the part of the teams to have all people with lesser disabilities, thereby seemingly discouraging the individuals with more severe disabilities and making the competition inequitable.
  • To maintain high standards of competition, quality of play and spectator interest.


Class I – Complete Motor loss at T-7 or above or comparable disability where there is a total loss of muscle function originating at or above T-7.

Class II – Complete motor loss originating at T-8 and descending through and including L-2 where there may be motor power of hips and thighs. Also included in this class are amputees with Bilateral hip disarticulation.

Class III – All other physical disabilities as related to lower extremity paralysis or Paresis originating at or below L-3. All lower amputees are included in this class except those with bilateral disarticulation (see Class II).

TEAM BALANCE: Each classification will be given a numerical value or factor as follows:

Class I – 1 value point;
Class II – 2 value points;
Class III – 3 value points.

At no time in a game shall a team have players participating with total points greater than twelve (12) on the floor at the same time.

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