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| Oct 28, 2021

8 Commonly Asked Questions about Wheelchair Lacrosse

By Shawn Maloney | Photo courtesy of WLUSA

Wheelchair lacrosse is a challenging team sport for athletes with physical disabilities who want demanding, fast-paced action. The game is played on a roller hockey rink or box lacrosse pad, using a no-bounce ball and the same sport wheelchairs that are typically used for wheelchair basketball. 

Wheelchair Lacrosse USA (WLUSA) serves as the governing body of wheelchair lacrosse in the United States and helps to provide participation opportunities for physically challenged men and women of all ages. These are some of the commonly asked questions routinely submitted to WLUSA

1. Who plays wheelchair lacrosse?
Athletes with physical disabilities who want to play a demanding, fast-paced team sport. Common disabilities include amputation, spina bifida, and spinal cord injury, among others. Men and women of all ages compete in the WLUSA adult division, and many of our teams are working to develop a youth division as well.

2. How do you play?
Players use standard lacrosse sticks to scoop, catch, carry, pass, and shoot the ball into the other team’s goal. Gameplay is 8v8 (including a goalie) and players can change positions on the fly, similar to sled hockey.

3. Where is wheelchair lacrosse played?
For competitive games, wheelchair lacrosse is typically played on a roller hockey rink or hard surface box lacrosse rink. Practices may be held in a gym or tennis court.

4. What equipment do you use?
WLUSA athletes use the same sport wheelchairs that are used for wheelchair basketball or rugby. Players wear standard men’s lacrosse equipment, including a helmet, gloves, arm pads, and shoulder pads, and play using a no-bounce lacrosse ball.

5. Can you hit each other?
Yes, body checking is allowed — as long as the contact is made IN FRONT of the axle hub of the wheelchair. Slashing, cross-checking, pushing from behind, and other typical penalties are illegal.

6. Is there a classification system?
WLUSA does not currently utilize a disability classification system. Non-disabled, or “abled-bodied” athletes are encouraged to play, and each team may have a maximum of three non-disabled players on the floor at one time during competition.

7. Where are WLUSA teams located?
WLUSA is proud to support competitive and developing teams in Baltimore, Buffalo, Denver, Grand Rapids, Houston, Indianapolis, Long Island, Milwaukee, Minneapolis, Richmond, and San Diego.

8. Are there official rules for wheelchair lacrosse?
Yes, USA Lacrosse and Wheelchair Lacrosse USA collaborated on establishing a standardized rule set for wheelchair lacrosse. This joint venture was intended to bring consistency to game mechanics and penalties, which are extremely similar to “stand-up” lacrosse.

Players who wish to get involved with wheelchair lacrosse or have additional questions may contact the WLUSA directly at

Additional resources are also available at