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Basketball

Special Olympics athletes Nick Van Denburgh of Minnesota and Michael Reed of New Jersey tip off at the 2013 Special Olympics Unified Sports Basketball Game at the NBA All Star Weekend. Photo by Will Schermerhorn

Basketball is a favorite Special Olympics sport. This basketball sport center draws together sport news and stories, upcoming events and links to the Special Olympics Basketball Coaching Guide.


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Get an overview of the sport of Special Olympics basketball.  View the Basketball Fact Sheet

Basketball is one of the top sports at Special Olympics. Players take it up at all ages and at all abilities, from young players learning to handle the ball and keep it under control while dribbling to older, more experienced players who have the moves and know the strategies to play challenging ball.

It's also one of the favorite sports for the Special Olympics Unified Sports initiative, when players with and without intellectual disabilities form teams to play other unified teams. It's a learning experience that's also a lot of fun. 


News and Stories


July 02, 2015 | Europe Eurasia: Estonia

First Unified Basketball Team in Estonia: "Everybody’s equal on the basketball court"

By Tiina Möll

The first Unified Estonian basketball team.

In Viljandimaa, Estonia, a Unified Basketball team was formed last year. We had a chance to hear the coach, Kuuno Tiitus, reflect on his experiences.View Story In Viljandimaa, Estonia, a Unified Basketball team was formed last year. We had a chance to hear the coach, Kuuno Tiitus, reflect on his experiences. In this particular case, one can truly say that the coach was initially the unifying element – he had been coaching a basketball team made up of SO athletes for several years and at one point decided to invite some players from another team he was coaching to join the game as partners. This is how the Unified team was born. The athletes and partners, all of whom are students or alumni of three schools in the area, had until then occasionally been in contact through various school or sports events but they had not played together until last year. Now, especially with the World Games approaching, they play together at least once per week. Kuuno Tiitus stresses that everybody has very equal skills and abilities and they play similarly on the court – there is no differentiation between who is with and who is without intellectual disability. „

About Tiina Möll:I work with Special Olympics in Estonia.
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June 25, 2015 | North America: Michigan

Basketball and soccer rocks

By Kelly Jacobs

Hi my name is Kelly Jacobs. I'm 40 years old and I am one of the athletes of Special Olympics. I enjoy basketball and soccer.View Story Hi my name is Kelly Jacobs. I'm 40 years old and I am one of the athletes of Special Olympics. I enjoy basketball and soccer. I like basketball because you meet new people and we go up to states in Rockford . The coaches are very cool. Thank you Kelly Jacobs

About Kelly Jacobs:I like to read watch movies and hang out with friends
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May 12, 2015 | North America: New York

Deciding to Coach

By Kyndra Benoit

I work at an ARC home and started a small basketball game for a few of the houses before I found out about special olympics in our area. I got a few of the guys from my house interested and one of the women just went to watch.View Story I work at an ARC home and started a small basketball game for a few of the houses before I found out about Special Olympics in our area. I got a few of the guys from my house interested and one of the women just went to watch. She enjoyed it so much she began playing as well. I was asked to help out since I went every week and I had not played basketball in about 6 years due to medical reasons. I eventually went through the coaches trained and became certified. I absolutely love doing and the guys on my team are so inspiring. I have decided to help out in other sports because working for such a great organization is the most fun thing I can do. I look forward to it every week and am disappointed that it is only once a week. Knowing what it is like to be limited, as I am medically, it is such a great feeling being involved in this.

About Kyndra Benoit:I am a coach for basketball currently. I work at a residential house for Ulster-Greene ARC. I used to play basketball for high school and a little in college before I got sick with an abnormal case of arthritis. I have not been able to play for about 6 years. I am just now being able to play and have been with the Ulster Tigers this season.
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Upcoming Basketball Events


Date

Event

Location

Nov 28 - Dec 6 2015

European Basketball Week

European Basketball Week is when we ask the broader basketball community to open more opportunities for athletes with intellectual disabilities in the game. Basketball Week involves athletes with and without intellectual disabilities, coaches, fans and families at more than 200 basketball events, matches, clinics and exhibitions across 33 countries.
For more information
Mirek Krogulec
Email:MKrogulec@specialolympics.org
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Various courts throughout Europe
Various communities in Europe Eurasia, Various
POLAND

January 14, 2016

Basketball 5 on 5 & Cheerleading

Join the Area 12 5 on 5 basketball teams for their local competition and check out the cheerleading competition as well! (Inclement weather make up date is Feb. 13)
For more information
Paula White
Email:pgwhite@spart7.com
View More

Limestone College
1115 College Drive

Gaffney, South Carolina
UNITED STATES

Do you have an event to add?

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Basketball Competitions

2014 Canada Summer Games

The Special Olympics 2014 Canada Summer Games was the largest Canadian Games ever. See results and teams.


2014 USA Games

The 2014 Special Olympics USA Games ran June 14-21. See results and stories.


2014 Southern California Summer Invitational Games

Special Olympics athletes from Southern California and from around the world competed in Los Angeles. See results and teams.


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.

Special Olympics near you»

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.

LEARN MORE»

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Videos and Photos

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


Videos and Photos

In Deep WaterGo feet first for one of the newest Special Olympics sports.See Slideshow »


Videos and Photos

Summer SportsOur athletes run, jump, swim and score in summer.See Slideshow »


Videos and Photos

Power of SportsSports are a powerful way to change our athlete’s lives.See Slideshow »


Videos and Photos

First Unity CupSpecial Olympics uses football to promote understanding.See Slideshow »


Videos and Photos

What We DoSports, health, education, community and more.See Slideshow »



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