We impact lives through
TENNIS, FITNESS, & FUN
by providing adaptive programs to individuals with Down syndrome.
EXPLORE OUR PROGRAMS
Our programs are designed to embrace the challenges that individuals with Down Syndrome face so our Athletes can learn, grow, and reach their fullest potential on and off the court.
Read Our Stories
- Dr. Murugu Manickam
Board Member, Buddy Up Tennis
Assistant Professor of Clinical Medicine, Division of Human and Molecular Genetics (Department of Pediatrics) Nationwide Children’s Hospital
When families are first given the diagnosis of Down syndrome, they often have a picture in their head of what to expect. Buddy Up Tennis helps me to give them a real-life example of re-framing those expectations into something positive. Parents are able to embrace the idea that their children can learn a sport, be a member on a team, improve
- Melissa Hempel
Board Member, Buddy
VP of Planning and Allocation, Express, Inc.
Buddy Up Tennis, Fitness and Fun – each of those words completely envelopes the meaning of our program. As a volunteer however, I also would suggest “tremendous” be added to each “Tennis” “Fitness” and “Fun”. Buddy Up Tennis provides a tremendous environment for Athletes and Buddy volunteers to share in a unique experience of learning. It is an environment that consistently provides support and encouragement while remaining focused on progress for each and every athlete, whatever that level of progress may be. As a volunteer, I get a tremendous reward each week being surrounded by determined, fun, and inspiring Athletes.
- Scott Barbour
Board Member, Athlete Parent
President and CEO, Advanced Drainage Systems
Buddy Up Tennis is a great activity from several perspectives for our Athlete Ben and by extension of the rest of our family. Ben has developed better social skills and increased his circle of friends through regular participation Probably this is as beneficial for him personally as the regular exercise and learning how to play tennis. He looks forward to going each weekend and misses it when we are unable to attend Buddy Up Tennis is dedicated to improving lives and I often describe it simply as a Win – Win – Win for the Barbour family.
INSPIRING AMERICA AT THE US OPEN
In September of 2018, Buddy Up Tennis received an invite to the nation’s most esteemed professional tennis event: the 50th Annual US Open Tennis Championships. Welcomed by the world’s top tennis professionals including Roger Federer and Caroline Wozniacki, 17 of our Athletes took center court to serve up tennis, fitness, and fun!
Join the Fun
Where there’s a WILL, there’s a WAY!®
It all started with a mother, a son, and a will to embrace a challenge.
Will Gibson was just 3 years old when he first watched his older brother Keegan play tennis at Wickertree Tennis Club. Will was intrigued by the sport so his mother, Beth, and two Wickertree employees took note of that enthusiasm and researched ways to teach Will how to play tennis. They quickly realized that there was a void in tennis programming for individuals with Down syndrome so they decided to embrace the challenge and develop the first ongoing adaptive tennis and fitness program for Athletes with Down syndrome.
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