NEW BRITAIN, Conn. (Sept. 9, 2015) Hospital for Special Care (HSC) and the Ryan Martin Foundation (RMF) have joined forces to establish the first organized wheelchair basketball program in Connecticut ages 10 through 18 living with physical disabilities. The inaugural event will be held on Sat., Sept. 12, 2015 from 12:00 to 2:00 p.m. at the gymnasium at HSC’s Research & Education Center (370 Osgood Avenue, New Britain). 

This program, offered free of charge, will provide year-round practice sessions at the HSC gym.  Coaching will be provided by Ryan Martin and members of the Connecticut Spokebenders Wheelchair Basketball team, another program HSC is proud to support.  Seasonal competition against other junior wheelchair basketball teams in the greater New England region is planned.  Advance registration preferred:, 860.832.6220.

“We couldn’t be happier to partner with the Ryan Martin Foundation to provide additional opportunities in adaptive sports for youth living with physical disabilities.  Wheelchair basketball has long been a tradition here at HSC as the “home” of the Connecticut Spokebenders adult wheelchair basketball program.  This new initiative is a perfect fit and brings together two strong organizations with similar visions,” said HSC Sports and Community Programs Manager Janet Connolly, MS, CTRS.

“It’s a surreal feeling that we have been able to create this partnership between the Ryan Martin Foundation and the Hospital for Special Care. This has been a goal of our foundation since day one, to bring a program of this caliber back to my home state! The partnership with HSC is ideal, as they have a long tradition of excellence in adaptive sports, as a Paralympic Sports Club under the direction of Janet Connolly,” said Ryan Martin, an internationally known professional wheelchair basketball player and youth mentor. “I speak for myself and the whole RMF family including Coach Paul Weiland, RMF Executive Director Marnie Cooper, the RMF board, athletes/families, sponsors and everyone associated with us that we are thrilled to embark on this endeavor.”

About Hospital for Special Care

Hospital for Special Care (HSC) is one of the five largest, free-standing long-term acute care hospitals in the United States and the nation’s only long-term acute-care hospital serving adults and children. HSC is recognized for advanced care and rehabilitation in pulmonary care, acquired brain injury, medically-complex pediatrics, neuromuscular disorders (including ALS research), spinal cord injury, comprehensive heart failure as well as diagnostic, assessment and consulting services for children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorders. 

Located in New Britain and Hartford, CT, HSC operates inpatient and outpatient facilities serving Southern New England on a not-for-profit basis. For the latest news and information, please visit, and follow us on Twitter @HospSpecialCare.

About Ryan Martin Foundation

Ryan Martin, a professional wheelchair basketball player and youth mentor, established RMF in 2011. Born with Spina Bifida, wheelchair basketball opened many doors for Ryan, from attending college to playing professional basketball overseas. The foundation hopes to harness the transformative effects of education and sports to help people with disabilities succeed.  Its mission is to help youth and adult athletes with disabilities live independent, impassioned, productive and full lives through sports training, mentoring and education.