Great Lindsay-Lee Waters Interview -
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old May 28th, 2010, 05:01 PM Thread Starter
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Great Lindsay-Lee Waters Interview How easy or difficult was it to come back to the Tour after having your first child? I believe you came back playing in March 2001, just two months after having your daughter? Was it easy or difficult to get back into playing shape?

Lindsay Lee-Waters: After going through physical training for six weeks, I attempted playing only eight weeks after having our daughter; however, my body told me quickly it was a bit too soon to be going back onto the court. I ended up obtaining several injuries and had to stop playing for a few months in order to let the injuries heal and further my physical conditioning. With Sevyn being my first child, this was definitely a learning experience, as my mind's eagerness to get back onto the court probably outweighed my bodyís eagerness. What adjustments did you have to make in both your personal and professional lives after having your first child? And were there any additional adjustments after having your second child? What were they?

Lindsay Lee-Waters: In my personal life, it was exciting, as immediately tennis became secondary and was no longer the primary focus of my life - my newly born child became front and center, and my perspective on life drastically changed. Waking up each morning had an entirely new meaning. Someone depended upon me for each and every simple need. It was simply joyous to start each morning with a beautiful little baby girl smiling at you to begin your day.

Professionally, I had to make adjustments to how I approached daily training and tournament travel, as I now had to find caretakers for my daughter when I was training or playing a match on court. Thankfully my daughter has wonderful grandparents, and I have a husband who loves playing Mr. Mom, as they provided most of the caretaking when I was on court at tournaments. At home we had a wonderful nanny to assist on a part-time basis while I was on court training. You had your second child in April 2006 and were back playing then in August. How much easier or more difficult was coming back a second time with the balance of tennis and two children?

Lindsay Lee-Waters: Well, I gained more weight with my second child, and along with me being older and other variables, such as having a hernia, it made it much more difficult to get back into playing shape. It has been a huge adjustment with the second one because you have two kids at different stages, and I homeschool our daughter, as well.

Actually now that I think about it, I am still trying to get back into shape! With the hernia it has hampered my core muscle group from bouncing back to normal strength, and as you know oneís core is vastly important in playing the sport of tennis.

The dynamics of having two children five years apart has also been extremely difficult, as my daughter is homeschooled, and my son is loads of nonstop energy; therefore, they both are at home with us 24 hours a day and seven days a week for the most part. It is quite a challenge to homeschool my daughter each day while at the same time trying to provide productive time filled with daily activities for my son, whose energy is like that of a Category 5 tornado. We donít think much about it but rather merely just do it. We accept that this is our life, and what a wonderful life it is to be able to be spend each and every day together as a family. We would have it no other way. Do your children and husband travel with you? How often? When did they start traveling with you? If they donít travel with you, is it difficult being away from them?

Lindsay Lee-Waters: The majority of the year, my husband and children travel with me to almost every tournament. We try hard, however, to make sure we have a balance of home life and tournament travel life by working the schedule where the family travels all together for two weeks, and then we try to get home for two weeks. It does not always work out this way, but we do our best to try to make this happen so that the kids can have somewhat of a feeling of normal home life experience, as well as the wonderful culture experience of traveling the world abroad.

The kids love traveling, and we joke that they have kind of become the tour mascots. The players on tour are so kind and good with them. How do you balance your professional tennis career with being a parent?

Lindsay Lee-Waters: My No. 1 priority in life is God and then a close second is being a mother to my children and a wife to my husband. Tennis, as you see, is fourth or fifth on the list but still very important to me. I simply have many goals I feel like I have yet to reach in my professional tennis life that I do believe I can reach. I am a very driven and optimistic person, which is why I do what I do.

I am pursuing my tennis goals on a personal level, but I also desire to be a role model for my children. I want my kids to see their mom striving for goals that some would say are very difficult to reach. I want them to see how real world life is. I want them to see the process of my struggles, as well as the rewards of my efforts. I want them to observe that life is what you make of it. You can exist or you can make a difference. I want them to learn how to make a difference through observation and then through application. For me, it is easy to balance when looking through the lens of this perspective. What is your daily schedule like of family time, along with practice and fitness training?

Lindsay Lee-Waters: When we are home, our tentative schedule is early-morning gym workouts, where the whole family goes to the gym together. We then head back home, and I teach Sevyn home school for about three to four hours while my husband spends time on business and with our son, Heath Paul. We then all head to the courts to train. We actually train our daughter Sevyn the first hour on the court, and then I train for two hours after Sevyn gets her training in. We then head back to the house and work on business matters, as my husband and I have several online website businesses that we run while Sevyn and Heath Paul do enrichment activities that we have set up. We then head off to Sevyn's Jiu Jitsu training four days a week and then come home and eat dinner, followed by family time. Then we hit the sack and repeat tomorrow.

We live by routines and have learned time management is an essential part of success. When we travel to tournaments, the same is arranged but merely around my daily matches. There are not too many mothers playing on the Tour, and you are the only mother of two children currently playing. How rewarding is it to be able to have both a family and such a great tennis career and to be the only current player to come back twice?

Lindsay Lee-Waters: I firmly believe without a shadow of doubt we all should live each day doing exactly what our hearts desire. I clearly understand that I have a certain window of opportunity that I can pursue my dreams in the sport of tennis due to the fact that professional-level tennis is such a physically demanding activity and one day my body will not be able to keep up. I, however, believe that the window of acceptance and opportunity has expanded for all sport to where players, if they so desire, can certainly play professional levels of sport into their 40s and beyond.

I believe the peak age for tennis is rapidly changing, where players are peaking in their late 20ss and into their 30s and beyond. I think mid-30s will be the peak years in the near future for tennis. Look at Brett Favre, who had his career year in football at 40 years old last year, and Dara Torres setting a world record in swimming at age 40. They are both very physically demanding sports.

A great example in tennis is Andre Agassi. He won three Grand Slams before the age of 29 and five Grand Slams after the age of 29. Another inspiring example in women's tennis is Kimiko Date Krumm, who is 40 years old and won a WTA Title last year at the age of 39. Due to today's technologies, physical training and nutritional breakthroughs, our age-acceptance window is ever increasing. I have dreams, and simply my dreams are my goals. I think we all should allow ourselves to dream and then dream big. I think life is about sharing your dreams with those closest to you and enjoying this wonderful journey together. Two children only make it more of a challenge, but this should not stop anyone from pursuing what they love. It merely makes it that much more special. Do you hope you and some of the other mothers on Tour can be inspiring to other players? That it is not necessarily a choice between continuing your tennis career and having a family?

Lindsay Lee-Waters: I really hope other female players see what I am doing and take note. Just think of all the ATP players who have children. When Federer had twins, no one even thought for a second if he would consider retirement. Why should it be any different for female players? Yes, there is a physical obstacle to deal with for us females, and, yes, our motherly instincts are very different than those of fathers, but these are not reasons enough to stop doing what one loves. Remember, you only live once, and just because you have children, this should not stop anyone from pursuing their dreams.

They merely get to ride along and participate in the wonderful journey with you. I look at it from the standpoint that we are setting the example and role modeling for our children how to pursue life with zest, and our children get to observe first-hand in real time. We look forward to going along next on their journey toward their dreams. What a fun venture. Do you hope that one day your children will be inspired by your success?

Lindsay Lee-Waters: Yes, I try each and every day to be that example. The neat thing is they are with me during my training and tournaments the majority of the time; therefore, they see how hard you have to work, the discipline it demands and the rewards it brings. Do your kids currently play tennis? If not, do you have any plans for them to start taking lessons? Is it something you all do as a family?

Lindsay Lee-Waters: Our daughter just started in the last year. We are not pushing it, but we try to get her out on the court a few times a week. She says she wants to be pro and that she is going to beat me soon! Yes, we always joke we are like the traveling hillbillies. We all pile in our truck and head to the tennis court each day and truly enjoy laughing and playing tennis all together as a family each and every day. It is a wonderful bonding time, and I hope it never ends. What about your own mother and grandmother? How were they influences on your tennis while you were coming up through the ranks, and how do they continue to influence you?

Lindsay Lee-Waters: My family has supported me through everything since I was little. They have lived the ups and the downs and always are there for me. They have kept me level-headed and taught me what is truly important in this life, which is much more than a tennis match. They are a big part of all my success in this sport. I am a blessed woman to have my mother and grandmother in my life. They have been wonderful role models. Did your mom travel with you when you were a young player?

Lindsay Lee-Waters: My mother traveled part of the time when I was little. She would always be so nervous - it was hard for her. It wasn't until early in my pro career that my mom could watch. She was more concerned with my attitude, work ethic and being a good example to the people I was around. In what ways did it help you to have your mom and grandmother there for support?

Lindsay Lee-Waters: The biggest thing is, no matter what, I could always call and depend on them for the best advice any kid/woman could ever have. To this day, I can call them and immediately obtain a sense of peace and tranquility from them. It's such a special relationship to me to have them always there for me. Back to your own game Ė where will we see you playing next? Any specific goals for this year?

Lindsay Lee-Waters: I am playing in the $50,000 USTA Pro Circuit event in Carson, Calif., this week. My main goal right now is to get back into the top 100 and then set more goals from there. I dream big, so my ultimate goal is to at the very least surpass my career-high ranking of No. 33, and, of course, who in this sport would not want to win a Grand Slam? Crazier things in this world have happened... why not a mother of two?
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old May 28th, 2010, 05:47 PM
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Re: Great Lindsay-Lee Waters Interview

Good article, thanks for posting.
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old May 28th, 2010, 05:55 PM
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Re: Great Lindsay-Lee Waters Interview

Thanks for posting. I didn't know Lindsay was such a religious freak

But I, being poor, have only my dreams
I have spread my dreams under your feet
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old May 28th, 2010, 05:56 PM
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Re: Great Lindsay-Lee Waters Interview

Originally Posted by CoryAnnAvants#1 View Post
I think mid-30s will be the peak years in the near future for tennis.
Lindsay, I wish you good but you are IN DENIAL

But I, being poor, have only my dreams
I have spread my dreams under your feet
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams
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