Boccia for Students with CVI

What is Boccia

Boccia (pronounced "bot-cha") is a Paralympic sport that was originally designed for athletes with cerebral palsy but that can be played by individuals with a wide range of disabilities. Played from a seated position, the player throws, rolls, or kicks four to six balls onto the court with the goal of getting them as close to the "jack", or target ball, as possible. Boccia can be played in pairs or in teams. A variety of adaptations exist for players with physical disabilities, from options for propelling the ball (throwing, rolling, etc.), to use of a ramp or assistant for those who cannot throw without some form of adaptation.

Boccia for Students with CVI

Boccia provides a great opportunity for students with complex needs including cortical visual impairment to participate in sport. Participating in boccia provides students with the opportunity to learn new skills, be active, to connect with peers, and to have fun. The student’s team, including the teacher of students with visual impairments and educational assistant working with the student, can provide input about what adaptations the student may need. Adaptations for the student might include:

  • Adjustments to the features of the ball:
    • Larger ball with textures that are easy to grip
    • Bold, bright colours providing adequate contrast with targets, floors, etc.
  • Adjustments to the features of the jack (target):
    • Lighting adjustments to draw attention to the target
    • Incorporating sufficient movement to enhance the target while not changing its location
    • Enhancing the colour and contrast of the target


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