Sport

No matter what experience you have, how old you are,

how good you are, or what you've done before, there are a

bunch of sports in Canberra that you can get involved in. 

 

Best of all, you will be welcomed with open arms.

 

Check them out here...

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Image by Adi Goldstein
Badminton Equipment

AFL

AFL, also known as Australian rules football or "Aussie Rules", is a hugely popular sport in Australia.

You can join your local club or find one of AFL's Disability Inclusion Programs.

These programs are set up to ensure people with disability across the country have the opportunity to participate in AFL.

Whether that be learning how to play through NAB AFL Auskick, playing community football with your mates or representing your state or territory at a National Carnival.

Athletics

Athletics covers a bunch of different types of events, including track and field, road running, cross country running and racewalking.

Athletics clubs are usually super welcoming of people with a disability, activities are easy to modify and there are fantastic opportunities to represent the ACT and Australia at high level competitions. 

Most state, national and international athletics competitions include events for athletes with a disability. 

Badminton

Badminton is a racquet sport played using racquets to hit a shuttlecock across a net. Although it may be played with larger teams, the most common forms of the game are "singles" and "doubles".

Para-Badminton is a version of badminton is a sport that can be played by both men and women of any age with a physical impairment.

 

It is a growing sport that is attracting more and more participants every year - both competitively and socially.

Basketball
Bowls Game
Cricket

Basketball

Basketball is a very popular team sport that is played socially and competitively across a bunch of venues in the ACT.

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Modified versions include Wheelchair Basketball and there are lots of opportunities for people with a disability to play basketball, whether they are just starting out or highly skilled and experienced basketballers.

Each year, Basketball Australia run the Ivor Burge Basketball Championships for people with an Intellectual Disability

Bowls

Bowls, or lawn bowls, is a sport where players roll 'biased' balls so that they stop close to a smaller ball called a "jack".

It is usually played outdoors on a grass bowling green in singles, doubles and teams.

Lots of bowling clubs offer fun, more social versions of the sport, like barefoot bowls, which help introduce people to the sport in a fun way.

Para-Lawn Bowls has been part of the Commonwealth Games since 2014.

Cricket

Cricket is one of Australia's most popular summer sports. Modified versions include indoor cricket, blind cricket and table cricket.

Local cricketers can play socially or competitively and there are plenty of teams and clubs playing both indoor and outdoor cricket all year round.

Cricket Australia runs the National Cricket Inclusion Championships in January each year, with players competing in three divisions - blind and vision impaired, deaf and hard of hearing, and cricketers with an intellectual disability.

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Image by Thomas Park
Gymnasts Practicing

Goalball

Goalball is a team sport designed specifically for athletes with a vision impairment.

 

Participants compete in teams of three and try to throw a ball that has bells embedded in it into the opponents' goal.

Goalball is a Paralympic sport, so people who have a vision impairment have opportunities to represent their state and country if they want to get really competitive.

Golf

Golf is a club-and-ball sport where players use various clubs to hit balls into a series of holes on a course in as few strokes as possible.

 

Golfers can also play shorter versions of the game, including Pitch & Putt and Putt Putt (or Mini) Golf.

Unlike many sports, golf is inclusive by design. In general, very little modification is required to equipment, facilities or the operation of the course to enable people with disability to participate in golf.

Gymnastics

Gymnastics is a sport that includes physical exercises requiring balance, strength​, flexibility, agility, coordination, and endurance. 

There are two main types of gymnastics - Artistic and Rhythmic.

Gymnastics Australia supports its  gymnastics clubs to actively welcome people with a disability through  their GymAbility Program that aims to provide more specific programs to suit people of all ability levels.

Rowing

Netball

Netball is a very popular sport played mostly by girls and women. Games are played on a rectangular court with raised goal rings at each end. The object is to score goals from within a defined area, by throwing a ball through the goal ring.

Many clubs and associations welcome people with a disability, and most clubs have teams of many levels of ability.

Netball Australia and Sport Inclusion Australia run the Marie Little Shield, a netball competition for women with an intellectual disability, giving these athletes the chance to represent their state at a national

Rowing

Rowing is the sport of racing boats using oars. It differs from paddling sports in that rowing oars are attached to the boat using oarlocks, while paddles are not connected to the boat. 

 

Rowing Australia runs a Para-Rowing Program that gives people with a disability the chance to be active on the water, get involved in a fun and friendly club environment, and participate in a variety of competitions from club regattas through state and national championships to world championships and Paralympic Games.

Rugby League

Rugby League is one of Australia's favourite sporting codes. Here in Canberra, we have a strong rugby league culture. Our local team is the Canberra Raiders who play at GIO Stadium.

 There are a number of clubs around Canberra that are open to people with a disability being involved as players or volunteers.

The most common modified version of the sport is League Tag, which is non-tackle. Similar other sports include OzTag and Touch Football.

Sunset Sailboats
Soccer

Rugby Union

Rugby Union is one of Australia's favourite sporting codes. Here in Canberra, we have a strong rugby culture. Our local team is the ACT Brumbies who play at GIO Stadium.

 There are a number of clubs around Canberra that are open to people with a disability being involved as players or volunteers.

The most famous modified version of the sport is Wheelchair Rugby, which is played at the Paralympic Games.

Sailing

Sailing is a sport that uses wind to power sails and propel a boat forward (rather than engines). Australia has a strong sailing tradition and has won medals in both the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

 

Sailing Australia is very committed to encouraging people with a disability to 'get on the water' to take part in sailing.

 

They offer a variety of 'Para Sailing' programs and activities at a number of Sailing and Yacht Clubs across the country. 

Soccer

Soccer (or football), is considered to be the world's most popular sport.

Canberra has a team called Canberra United who play in the National Women's Football League (the W-League).

Soccer is a great sport to foster the inclusion of people with a disability, often just joining mainstream clubs and teams. But there are also a number of modified versions of the game - including Wheelchair SoccerBlind Soccer and Cerebral Palsy Soccer

Softball Glove
Swimming Victory
Ping Pong Racket and Ball

Softball

Softball is a bat and ball game that is very similar to baseball but played with a larger ball.

 

Softball Australia is committed to increasing accessibility and opportunities for people with a disability to participate in the sport.

 

 In Canberra there are opportunities to play both social and competitive softball.

Swimming

Swimming is one of Australia's favourite pastimes.

Participants can swim for fun, fitness, for social reasons or for competition.

Competitive swimmers can represent the ACT and Australia in a bunch of events - including the Paralympic Games and Special Olympics.

And we are very lucky in Canberra to have access to high quality indoor and outdoor aquatic centres in every part of town.

Table Tennis

Table tennis is a modified, indoor version of traditional tennis, played on a table with a small net and wooden paddles rather than racquets.

Athletes from all physical and intellectual impairment groups can play table tennis.

Para table tennis is the third largest Paralympic sport in terms of athlete numbers and is practiced in more than 100 countries.

Tennis Racket
Colorful Bowling Balls

Tennis

Tennis is a racquet sport that can be played individually against a single opponent (singles) or between two teams of two players each (doubles).

There are lots of clubs in Canberra that are more than happy to have people with a disability come along.

Tennis is often modified to suit people of different abilities by doing things like changing the type of ball used, allowing the ball to bounce more than once and by changing the size of the playing area.

Tenpin Bowling

Tenpin bowling is a sport where a bowler rolls a bowling ball down a wood or synthetic lane toward ten pins positioned in a triangle at the far end of the lane. The goal is to knock down all ten pins.

It is played in singles, doubles and teams, with players usually being put in competitions with players of similar ability levels.

Tenpin bowling is very popular in the disability community, with inclusive leagues running in almost every bowling centre in the country. 

Triathlon

A triathlon is an endurance multi-sport race consisting of swimming, cycling, and running over various distances. Triathletes compete for fastest overall completion time, racing each segment sequentially with the time transitioning between the disciplines included.

People with disabilities currently participate in all forms of triathlon, from full ironman to mini and taster events. 

Canberra has a strong and supportive triathlon community, with clubs very open to welcoming people with a disability into their ranks.