Tennis for blind & partially sighted people

Sound Ball Tennis

Metro started running training sessions in tennis in 2007, following an impressive demonstration of the sport by Japanese blind and partially sighted players.

The game is played on either a badminton court or a standard tennis court using a junior tennis racket and an adapted sponge ball that makes a noise when it bounces. Balls can be either black or florescent yellow to give maximum contrast with the colour of the sports hall.

The standard rules of tennis apply with just a few modifications: if you’re totally blind you’re allowed three bounces, those with partial sight are allowed two. See rules for more info.

Just like standard tennis, you can play singles or doubles. Sighted players can play against VI players, but they’re allowed only one bounce and no volleying.

We can offer:

•Regular evening practice sessions in London with a coach on hand
•An annual national tournament in the Autumn
(Thanks to support from the Tennis Foundation)
•Support to achieve a coaching certificate
•Sessions for adults and juniors. ITC Friday sessions are for the partially sighted players. NTC Friday sessions are for the advanced players. Wednesday sessions are for totally blind players (B1) and people who have never played tennis before.

Click on ‘Events and Fixtures’ in the Quicklinks box for more info.

Want to know more?

Read about the Metro Annual Tennis Tournament 2013 and a new players perspective by clicking on 'Articles' in the Quicklinks box on this page. For an umpire's view of the 2012 Tournament, Visit:

Watch a video on the Tennis Foundation website of Metro members playing at the National Tennis Centre by clicking the following link :

To read about Miyoshi Takei, the inventor of blind tennis, visit:

To find out more about what we offer or to get involved, contact Odette Battarel

You can watch a video of Odette being interviewed about Sound Ball Tennis at the link below:
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