PATA hosts Wheelchair Tennis Camp
CHARLOTTESVILLE Va. (CBS19 NEWS) -- This year's Wheelchair Tennis Camp included 25 campers of all different ages and experience levels. Paralympic medalist David Wagner worked with beginners to learn pushing patterns and chair setup while the more advanced players learned game strategy and how to strengthen their skills.
“So, we’ve got a mix of everybody here. And we are trying to get as many people involved in this area,” Wagner said.
In 1995, Wagner suffered a broken neck due to an ocean incident leaving him paralyzed from the chest down. Shortly after his injury, he saw an ad for a wheelchair tennis clinic and decided to test it out.
“And I hit my first ball and I fell in love with the sport. I was like, I want to do this. This is great. So, I got started out at a camp very similar to this," he said.
Since then, Wagner has totaled eight Paralympic medals through five games and is hoping to be back on the court for the 2024 Paralympic Games in Paris.
“It doesn’t get easier as you get older, but I am definitely training hard and doing all the right things I need to do to be ready,” Wagner said.
Wagner also says his favorite part about wheelchair tennis is the community and seeing people bond over much more than just their love of the sport.
“The camaraderie and the sharing of what we do here goes way deeper than just the tennis court. It goes into the aspect of life and builds confidence and breeds success,” Wagner said.