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Table Tennis

This page draws together table tennis-related information for all of Special Olympics. The coaching materials and other links will help you get a good sense of how this sport contributes to Special Olympics.


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Get an overview of the sport of Special Olympics table tennis.  View the Table Tennis Fact Sheet

Every athlete aims in passing the ball to the opponent side of the table over the net, striking it with a table tennis racquet. Table Tennis is a fast sport that requires excellent coordination of hands and eyes. Special Olympics athletes share the essential elements of force and ability so that they can play table tennis. Apart from the traditional events, Special Olympics competition includes individual skill events that allow the athletes to work and compete in basic skills of table tennis. The development of these basic skills is necessary for the athletes to take part in the events. These skills include bounce of the ball with the racket, volley and backhand.


Table Tennis Stories and News


August 14, 2015 | Europe Eurasia: Romania

Hard Won Medals for Romanian Champs

By Maureen Rabbitt

In a country where many people with intellectual disabilities still live secluded from the rest of society, the story of Nicoleta and Ghizela is unfortunately the exception, not the rule.

Abandoned at birth and then secluded in Romanian residential institutions for almost 25 years, athletes Nicoleta Nicolici and Ghizela Ghereben are living proof that people with intellectual disabilities can achieve greatness, if encouraged and supported in their goals.View Story Abandoned at birth and then secluded in Romanian residential institutions for almost 25 years, athletes Nicoleta Nicolici and Ghizela Ghereben are living proof that people with intellectual disabilities can achieve greatness, if encouraged and supported in their goals. Thanks to a institutionalization project run by Inclusion Europe the women were moved into residential care and joined Special Olympics. Nicoleta won a gold medal in mini javelin while both wome won silver in relay. Back in Romania, Nicoleta works as a cleaning staff, as is respected by colleagues who see her as a true team player. In her spare time, she plays table tennis, enjoys running, and is actually the Romanian Special Olympics gold champion in badminton as well. Ghizela has a job as a chef's assistant, loves singing and doing sports, and is vice-champion in the Romanian national Karate tournament for people with disabilities. The two women are also committed self-advocates for the rights of people with ID.

About Maureen Rabbitt:I am Communications Director for Special Olympics Europe Eurasia.
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August 01, 2015 | SOI General: Headquarters

Côte d’Ivoire Takes Gold in Table Tennis

By Brian Smith

Côte d’Ivoire didn’t need the win – they’d already secured Gold in Table Tennis Unified Doubles by winning all their matches in the round robin, but they wanted to win their final match against Russia. It was a nail-biter.View Story Côte d’Ivoire didn’t need the win – they’d already secured Gold in Table Tennis Unified Doubles by winning all their matches in the round robin, but they wanted to win their final match against Russia. It was a nail-biter. Tied two games each, the Russian team took the early lead, but Côte d’Ivoire powered back to win and complete their clean sweep. “It is my passion,” said Special Olympics athlete Ange Ismael Kone, 16, when asked what drove him to compete. His partner, Marie M’Boua, 33, expressed his admiration for Kone’s dedication to the sport, noting that he practiced for two hours, four times a week. As is the case in most parts of the world, there is still work to be done in Côte d’Ivoire to raise awareness and increase tolerance of people with intellectual disabilities, but M’Boua expressed confidence that events like the World Games would succeed in changing attitudes. “They just need to watch him play,” said M’Boua.

About Brian Smith:I am volunteering with the Special Olympics communications team in Los Angeles.
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November 26, 2014 | Africa: Senegal

Senegal hosts their annual Camp Shriver.

By Mrs Rajah Diouri Sy.

Special Olympics Senegal annually hosts a Camp Shriver that hosts over 100 children. The Camp continues a tradition that created by our founder, the late Eunice Kennedy Shriver who hosted the first camp right in her own backyard in Maryland.View Story Special Olympics Senegal annually hosts a Camp Shriver that hosts over 100 children. The Camp continues a tradition that created by our founder, the late Eunice Kennedy Shriver who hosted the first camp right in her own backyard in Maryland. The Camp Shriver experience significantly boosts skills in multiple sports and fosters social inclusion for athletes with and without intellectual disabilities who come together in a common goal of inclusion and participation regardless of ability. Special Olympics Senegal receives great support for this camp from the Ministry of Youth and this relationship has made it possible for the program to host this event annually. This year 121 athletes and partners experienced a great camping adventure. They got to participate in table tennis and basketball; swimming lessons were treated to a field trip to the zoo, a guided tour at the Economic and social council, and a visit to the Monument of the Renaissance. The athletes were trained by Special Olympics Senegal coaches and were chaperoned by volunteers and 21 monitors and a special education teacher. They all enjoyed their time at the camp and are looking forward to the next year’s camp.

About Mrs Rajah Diouri Sy.:Special Olympics Senegal National Director
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Table Tennis Competitions

2014 European Summer Games

The Special Olympics European Summer Games featured 10 sports and 58 delegations, making the 2014 Games one of the largest ever. See stories and results


2013 Asia Pacific Games

Athletes from 30 Asia Pacific and East Asia regions compete in the inaugural Special Olympics 2013 Asia Pacific Games. Get schedules and results.


2011 Special Olympics World Summer Games

Athens, Greece, was the home of the 2011 Special Olympics World Summer Games. That year, it was the world’s largest sporting event for athletes with intellectual disabilities. See results by athlete, delegation and bib number.


How to Get Involved in Special Olympics

Special Olympics sports training, coaching and competitions go on in more than 170 countries around the world. You can get involved by getting in touch with the closest Special Olympics office.

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Made Possible by The Annenberg Foundation

The Special Olympics movement is profoundly grateful for the support of the Annenberg Foundation which has underwritten the production of the coaches’ guides and resources, supporting our global goals for coaches’ excellence.

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Videos and Photos

Coaching in SerbiaCoaches from three countries met in Serbia to hone their skills.See slideshow »


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