Meeting Expenses of Wheelchair Rugby: Strategies Employed to Procure Funding and Promotion by Teams and Players


  • Michael Cottingham University of Houston
  • Ashlyne Vineyard University of Houston
  • Fernanda Velasco Texas Woman’s University
  • Bernadine Asias Texas State University


disability sport, sponsorship, sport marketing, wheelchair rugby


Research notes that disability sport can be expensive, and finances are a limiting factor when examining participation rates. However, no research to date addresses the financial investment to participate in competitive disability sports or how these athletes and their teams finance participation. Therefore, there are two distinct purposes of this study: (1) to identify the economic investment and time commitment needed to fund-raise for wheelchair rugby and (2) to determine how teams and individuals fund wheelchair rugby. Results indicate that wheelchair rugby athletes and their teams fund sport participation through large-scale sponsorships, fund-raisers, and small-scale sponsorships. Additionally, athletes self-pay a substantial portion of their expenses, creating an exclusive level for participation given that wheelchair users are statistically more economically disadvantaged. Finally, some teams are effectively engaging in social media and website use to generate revenue for sport participation, but a substantive portion lacks a sophisticated electronic based marketing plan. 


Subscribe to Palaestra






Feature Articles