Court is in session and you should play!
Since the late 19th century, millions have taken up the sport of tennis. If you’ve been curious about playing tennis, here are a few tips for starting the game from a pro.
Tennis clubs and courts are opening up in many locations. Check with your local club and parks and recreations departments for availability.
Tip#1: Sign up for a few lessons
Most tennis clubs have licensed instructors available. According to Pierremont Oaks General Manager Grady Wilson, tennis “is a highly technical sport, you want to get off to a good start.” A good tennis pro can help you get the basics down and off on the right foot. Make sure the pro is registered and certified with the United States Professional Tennis Association or the Professional Tennis Registry.
Tip #2: Join an apprenticeship program
Learn with others at your level by joining a program at your local tennis club. The cost runs around $60 and is the most economical choice. You will be paired up with a pro for an hour a week. At the end of the program, enjoy a party and start playing in a step-up league.
Tip #3: The right equipment makes a difference
Wilson says, “You get what you pay for… The less expensive equipment doesn’t really give you a good feel of what the tennis ball feels like.” You don’t have to buy a $175 racket either. See how a mid-priced racket feels in your hand. Check out the tennis club’s pro shop as well as sporting goods stores. For footwear, Wilson suggests investing in a good pair of tennis shoes. They are better suited for the twists, turns and hard stops. Running shoes do not have the support to change directions.
Tip #4: Tennis is great for any age
Kids as young as four can start playing. One member at Pierremont Oaks Tennis Club is 91! Tennis is a lifelong sport. Even whole families can play together. Kids can participate in a Junior Development Program while the parents take lessons.
Tip #5: Give it a try!
Tennis can add ten years to your life! The exercise is great. Even those in wheelchairs can participate. “The socialization is incredible. Your club becomes your family. It’s just an amazing sport,” says Wilson.
Here’s a list of Ark-La-Tex tennis clubs that can provide more tips for starting tennis.
- Pierremont Oaks Tennis Club – 578 Springlake Dr., Shreveport
- East Ridge Country Club – 1000 Stewart Dr., Shreveport
- Bill Cockrell Tennis Center – 4109 Pines Rd., Shreveport
- Racket Club Indoors – 8201 Tennis Ct. Ln., Shreveport
- Quebes Tennis Center – 3507 Beverly Pl., Shreveport (currently closed for renovations)
- Stone Bridge Swim & Tennis Club – 350 Stonebridge Blvd., Bossier City
- Bossier Tennis Center – 1651 Mondello Way, Bossier City
- El Dorado Racquet Club – 1127 Glenwood Rd., El Dorado, Ark
- Northridge Country Club – 120 Bill Rogers Dr., Texarkana, Tex
- Texarkana College Tennis – 920 Martine St., Texarkana, Tex
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