Sports Summary

Wheelchair basketball was one of the foundation sports on the Paralympic program in Rome, Italy, in 1960, and remains one of the most popular sports at the Paralympic Games.

To be eligible to compete, athletes must have have an objective and measurable permanent physical impairment in their lower limbs which prevents them from running, jumping and pivoting as an able-bodied player.

Players are assigned a point value from 1.0 to 4.5, and a team must not exceed 14.0 points for the five players on court. This ensures that each player has an integral role to play in the team structure, regardless of the degree of their impairment. Observed trunk movements and stability during actual basketball participation, not medical diagnosis, form the basis of player classification.

Get involved in Para-sport: register your interest today!


Events & Disciplines

Men’s 12-team and women’s 10-team tournaments are contested at the Paralympic Games. Teams are drawn into two pools and the four highest placed teams in each group progress to the quarter-finals.


Who is eligible to compete in wheelchair basketball?

Athletes with a physical impairment affecting their lower limbs, including spinal cord injury, nerve damage, limb loss or deficiency and cerebral palsy

What are the classes?

Athletes are classified into one of eight classes, with classes ranging from 1.0 to 4.5 points. For more information, view the Wheelchair Basketball Classification Information Sheet (updated Nov 2019)

How do I get classified?

Request a classification

Rules & Equipment


The field of play in wheelchair basketball is the same as Olympic basketball. It is 28 metres long and 15 metres wide, and for official national and international matches, a wooden floor is required.


The ball must be an approved single shade of orange with eight traditionally shaped panels and black seams. The outer surface is made of leather, synthetic leather, rubber or another synthetic material. Its circumference may be anywhere between 74.9cm and 78cm, and weigh 567 grams to 650 grams.


The wheelchair has either three or four wheels – two large wheels at the back and one or two small wheels at the front. It may also have one or two anti-tip devices that use no more than two small castors attached to either the frame or rear axle. The tyres may be any colour as long as they do not mark the floor. All competition chairs must meet the specifications set by the International Wheelchair Basketball Federation.

Medal History

Year Gold Silver Bronze total
2012 0 2 0 2
2008 1 0 1 2
2004 0 2 0 2
2000 0 1 0 1
1996 1 0 0 1


We encourage those wishing to explore wheelchair basketball to contact their state federation in the first instance. The national federation link below provides information on the national high performance program leading to competing internationally and at the Paralympic Games.

National Federation
Organisation Website
Basketball Australia
State Federations
State Organisation Website
ACT Basketball ACT
NSW Basketball NSW
NT Basketball NT
QLD Basketball QLD
SA Basketball SA
TAS Basketball TAS
VIC Basketball VIC
WA Basketball WA