The National Wheelchair Basketball Association (NWBA)

Published: February 21, 2004  |  Source: nwba.com
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NWBA MISSION STATEMENT

A Winning Strategy
The National Wheelchair Basketball Association (NWBA) is the nation’s oldest and largest Disability sport organization. Based in Colorado Springs, Colorado, the NWBA is a non-profit organization which serves as the national governing body for men’s, women’s and youth wheelchair basketball in the United States.

Growing Stronger by the Day
Founded in 1948, the NWBA’s mission is to provide persons with permanent lower limb disabilities the opportunity to play, learn and compete in wheelchair basketball. Today over 2000 member athletes compete on more than 185 teams throughout the United States. The 185 teams compete in six divisions; men’s (three divisions based on skill level), women’s, intercollegiate and juniors (three sub divisions based on age and skill level). In addition to providing the organization where these teams compete, the NWBA sponsors post season competition leading to the crowning of a national champion in each division. Over the past five decades, the NWBA has helped more than 50,000 individuals “Get Back in the Game” both on and off the court.

Our Perspective is Local
The NWBA works diligently to provide program models for developing the athletic potential of individuals with lower limb impairments. This process begins at the grass roots level. The NWBA has long assisted communities with the formation of teams and with player education. The NWBA develops instructional books for players and coaches. For over 20 years, the NWBA Basketball Camp has brought and continues to bring players together with the top national and international coaches for in-depth instruction. Since its inception, more than 1200 athletes have participated in this week long camp. The NWBA Referee Camp is held as a part of the NWBA Camp. The newest development program, the United States Wheelchair Basketball Festival, brings our nation’s emerging elite athletes together each year to receive instruction and evaluation in a setting that simulates international competition.

Our Perspective is National
In 1949 six teams gathered to compete for the right to refer to themselves as national champions. The Kansas City Pioneers emerged victorious. In the years that followed, the number of teams competing grew and the need arose to add additional levels to the postseason playoff structure. Teams had to advance through sectional and regional competitions on their way to the national championship. In 1975 a women’s championship was added followed by the first intercollegiate championship in 1977. In 1983 the first national junior championship took place in Munster, IN.The NWBA Junior Division has now grown to include three separate sub divisions each of which competes for a national title. The NWBA provides the administrative structure and rules for member teams to compete.

Our Perspective is Global
The NWBA is recognized as the governing body for wheelchair basketball in the United States by the International Wheelchair Basketball Federation (IWBF), and is responsible for the selection, training and fielding of USA teams that compete in international basketball competition. These competitions include:

Paralympic Games
IWBF World Games
IWBF Under 22 World Championships
Pan American Games
Roosevelt Cup
Walker Cup (women)
North American Cup

Getting the Word Out
Whether it is a pickup game at a local school or the Gold Medal Game at a World Championship, the NWBA will be there for our nation’s wheelchair basketball players. The NWBA recently initiated its “Get Back in the Game” campaign designed to introduce the services it provides to an even greater audience. Over the next five years, the NWBA hopes to develop an additional 50 teams in the United States and Canada. The NWBA would like to invite you to become a member of the NWBA Family. To learn more about NWBA teams in your area or how to start one complete the attached form and return it to the NWBA National Office. The NWBA hopes to see you on the court in the very near future.