Hey Becky! When can my child start learning to play tennis?

by Becky Holmes @cg_BeckyHolmes

If you love to play tennis and think that your child might love it, you should definitely consider getting him/her involved. As parents we want the best for our kids. We want them to be happy, active and find a sport that they are really going to enjoy. Tennis is a lifelong sport that can start at age three and continue into the 80s. Yes, I have seen 80-year-old men and women still rockin’ it on the court!

So, the question is ‘When can my child start learning to play tennis?’. Well, there are several answers to this question, because it’s never too late or too early to start learning. I run a tennis coaching program called Toddlers & Tennis. It’s a preschool enrichment program teaching 3-5 year olds the basics of tennis. For three-year old students, we are certainly not setting goals with the US Open in mind (who knows how far they will go!), we are simply teaching them what tennis is all about. We work on footwork, balance, hand-eye coordination activities, forehand basics and volleys. It’s a no pressure, fun time.

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Here a few tips on introducing your child to tennis…

Tennis Starter Kit for Kids

  1. Take your child out to a local tournament to see how other kids or adults play. What about a professional tournament? Talk about being inspired!
  1. Know the proper sized equipment to use:
    Ages 3-5 (19 inch racquet and foam or red felt tennis ball)
    Ages 6-8 (21 inch racquet and red felt ball)
    Ages 9-10 (23-25 inch racquet and orange felt ball)
  1. Find a coach who is the perfect fit for your child. It should be someone who is really good with kids and knows the right balance between silliness and training. Ask around for recommendations in your community.
  1. Invite their friend(s) to come along and play.
  1. Make it family time. Tennis is a great sport to get out and play with the whole family. Enjoy the workout while bonding with your kids.
  1. How about a cool new tennis outfit?! A cute tennis skirt, t-shirt or a cool new headband for looking good and feeling good on the court.
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  1. Reinforce skills learned on the court at home. Practice makes perfect, right?
  1. No pressure, just encouragement. Tennis may not be the sport your child will want to play, but at least they tried. It’s good for kids to try out lots of different sports. You could take a break for a year and then revisit, trying again when they get a little older.
  1. If your child has really taken a liking to tennis, sign him/her up for Jr. Team Tennis. It’s great to be a part of a team. Ask a local club nearby all about it.
  1. Most importantly, have fun!

 

Now it’s time to give it a go. Get your kiddo all set, looking good and feeling good for their first “Go” at tennis. Cheers to the best sport of a lifetime!

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Happy playing!

xo Becky

P.S. Tweet me anytime @cg_BeckyHolmes if you have questions about kids & tennis, being a mom or anything you can think of! Look forward to hearing from you all soon…