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View Full Version : Would you let your daughter lose her chilhood for tennis?


jcaprulez
Nov 20th, 2004, 10:23 PM
It seems that alot of tennis players were made to practise, all day, every day. I think this applies to most players on tour. Do you think it's acceptable for a child to have to focus on a career so young. It's not really healthy to exercise excessively. Is it really worth the money? People forget that for every kid that makes it theres another thousand that don't. I hate the way some tennis players don't get to do normal things as a child. They all seem to get whisked of to Florida or a tennis academy somewhere to practise and practise and practise and practise. It's not fair.

barmaid
Nov 20th, 2004, 10:44 PM
You make an excellent point and I'm sure there are many pro's and cons to the sacrifices one has to make along the way. For instance, I always maintained that Martina Hingis was "deprived" out of a normal childhood because of her mother's obsessive desire to make her a champion which she did:rolleyes: .....and as a result Martina had 5 Grand Slam's in her pocket at age 17 plus she also won 9 G.S. doubles titles. :worship: Martina was a exceptional child prodigy but she has been asked that same question many times and she said she has no regrets and as far as she's concerned had a "happy" childhood even though it wasn't normal....she loved what she was doing and was successful doing it!!:hearts: :kiss: :worship:



barmaid:wavey:

RVD
Nov 20th, 2004, 10:45 PM
Great question !
After my daughter saw some Venus and Serena tapes that I'd acquired, she suddenly became inspired and wanted to play. She was 5 yrs old. I signed her up with a coach and she took lessons for two years. The coach said that she had enormous ability and potential, and should continue. He said that she could "...smack the hell out of the ball." :lol: And that she picked up the techniques really fast and had great focus for someone so young. But I stopped her lessons because as her father, I had to decide whether academics or sports was more important. I decided on academics. So she's taking Kunk-Fu classes now and is excelling there. She's also classroom representative right now, tops in her 3rd grade class, and is only 8 years old trying to write books. :lol: I'm not bragging. Just so doggone proud of her. :bounce: :worship:

cartmancop
Nov 21st, 2004, 12:02 AM
I think as long as the child is happy it doesn't matter if they have a 'typical' childhood. If they desire to be the best tennis player in the world, I think they have to work or it & it should ultimately be the child's decision.

flyingmachine
Nov 21st, 2004, 12:10 AM
I think as long as the child is happy it doesn't matter if they have a 'typical' childhood. If they desire to be the best tennis player in the world, I think they have to work or it & it should ultimately be the child's decision.
I'm agree with you on that.

Alek
Nov 21st, 2004, 12:10 AM
I think as long as the child is happy it doesn't matter if they have a 'typical' childhood. If they desire to be the best tennis player in the world, I think they have to work or it & it should ultimately be the child's decision.
ditto

RedFilaJ-Cap#1
Nov 21st, 2004, 03:20 AM
I really wish for my daughter to play tennis. I don't want her to be unhappy but I think you can do both play tennis and be a normal child. I have a long time until I have to worry about that but I guess I can dream.

faboozadoo15
Nov 21st, 2004, 03:28 AM
i don't have children, but they will be introduced to tennis. the level at which they pursue tennis will be up to them. if they're having fun and want to be great and put the time in, i'll support that for sure. i don't see myself being a pushy parent, but i would love to see my children enjoying tennis as much as i have. but im a staunch believer that the best tennis can be found in the parks. you see people laughing there with their kids and family... that would be fine with me.

SJW
Nov 21st, 2004, 12:48 PM
no.

i'd do it the Richard Williams way. many props to him for the way he raised Venus and Serena.

Fantastic
Nov 21st, 2004, 03:33 PM
ReeVeeDynasty, it sounds like your daughter is determined to succeed at everything she does no matter what be it academics or sport. Be very proud of her. Children who are born with that type of drive and tenacity are a very rare breed. All you really need to do is encourage her all the way in whatever she loves doing best. (Give tennis another try. ;))

Dava
Nov 21st, 2004, 03:34 PM
If its what she really wanted to do then yes...but you know in the UK its a tough desicion espeically since schools dont rerally support it.

GoDominique
Nov 21st, 2004, 04:22 PM
no.

i'd do it the Richard Williams way. many props to him for the way he raised Venus and Serena.
So you think Venus and Serena weren't made to practice all day, every day? :)

tennischick
Nov 21st, 2004, 05:01 PM
So you think Venus and Serena weren't made to practice all day, every day? :)exactly! :worship: there is a huge difference between losing your childhood and having had a different childhood than most of your peers. most successful tennis players enjoyed a different childgood. that does not mean that there were all unhappy. the Mary Pierce experience is not the norm for most of IMOthese girls.

Calimero377
Nov 21st, 2004, 05:15 PM
Great question !
After my daughter saw some Venus and Serena tapes that I'd acquired, she suddenly became inspired and wanted to play. She was 5 yrs old. I signed her up with a coach and she took lessons for two years. The coach said that she had enormous ability and potential, and should continue. He said that she could "...smack the hell out of the ball." :lol: And that she picked up the techniques really fast and had great focus for someone so young. But I stopped her lessons because as her father, I had to decide whether academics or sports was more important. I decided on academics. So she's taking Kunk-Fu classes now and is excelling there. She's also classroom representative right now, tops in her 3rd grade class, and is only 8 years old trying to write books. :lol: I'm not bragging. Just so doggone proud of her. :bounce: :worship:


Intelligent girl obviously.
Are you really sure that you are her father .... ?

:lol:

Duramont
Nov 21st, 2004, 06:35 PM
I really wish for my daughter to play tennis. I don't want her to be unhappy but I think you can do both play tennis and be a normal child. I have a long time until I have to worry about that but I guess I can dream.

It is a point of view. If you play tennis for pleasure and not professional you will not lose so many time in your childhood. But if you want to play the wta tour with 16 or 17 years like all these Sharapova, Golvin, Safina, Vaidisova and many others, it is very stressy. You have to start seriuosly in a tennis school with many hours of practicing all day and apart from that learn some school subjects like English (for me I consider it as a foreign language ;) ) or Mathematics and than there is not a lot of freetime. ;) :rolleyes:

It is hard for young girls of 12 or 13 to start that hard. For example Maria Sharapova was seperated from her parents (in Russia) when she was in an American tennis school for so many years. Can you imagine that! :o

I really admiring players who make such a difficult way to become a tennis player. I'm not against these decisions but it is a really hard life and you have to surrender on a lot of things. ;)

grass roots
Nov 21st, 2004, 06:37 PM
It seems that alot of tennis players were made to practise, all day, every day. I think this applies to most players on tour. Do you think it's acceptable for a child to have to focus on a career so young. It's not really healthy to exercise excessively. Is it really worth the money? People forget that for every kid that makes it theres another thousand that don't. I hate the way some tennis players don't get to do normal things as a child. They all seem to get whisked of to Florida or a tennis academy somewhere to practise and practise and practise and practise. It's not fair.

Could you please list the normal things a child would do?

starr
Nov 21st, 2004, 07:31 PM
In the U.S.? Go to school. Sit on the sofa watch T.V. Play video games. Eat fast food.

:lol:

JenCpLvr
Nov 21st, 2004, 07:38 PM
It's a difficult question.. but, I think the rewards of tennis far outweigh the cons..

Also, if everyone decided not to let their children play tennis.. then we'd have nothing to watch and entertain ourselves with..right? :cool:

grass roots
Nov 21st, 2004, 07:45 PM
In the U.S.? Go to school. Sit on the sofa watch T.V. Play video games. Eat fast food.

:lol:

Holy shit! There appears to be a poster on this board who is normal (OK semi) ;):)

SJW
Nov 21st, 2004, 07:47 PM
So you think Venus and Serena weren't made to practice all day, every day? :)

i had you on ignore but someone quoted you.

they weren't MADE to do anything. if you actually take note of what they say, Richard tried everything to stop them playing tennis so much :rolleyes: but then again, you're more obsessed with the Williams sisters than i am, so you tell me :)

grass roots
Nov 21st, 2004, 07:47 PM
Great question !
After my daughter saw some Venus and Serena tapes that I'd acquired, she suddenly became inspired and wanted to play. She was 5 yrs old. I signed her up with a coach and she took lessons for two years. The coach said that she had enormous ability and potential, and should continue. He said that she could "...smack the hell out of the ball." :lol: And that she picked up the techniques really fast and had great focus for someone so young. But I stopped her lessons because as her father, I had to decide whether academics or sports was more important. I decided on academics. So she's taking Kunk-Fu classes now and is excelling there. She's also classroom representative right now, tops in her 3rd grade class, and is only 8 years old trying to write books. :lol: I'm not bragging. Just so doggone proud of her. :bounce: :worship:

Imagine - in another 9/10 years we could be starting threads all about her.

Martian Willow
Nov 21st, 2004, 07:51 PM
i had you on ignore but someone quoted you.

they weren't MADE to do anything. if you actually take note of what they say, Richard tried everything to stop them playing tennis so much :rolleyes: but then again, you're more obsessed with the Williams sisters than i am, so you tell me :)

Do you? :)

grass roots
Nov 21st, 2004, 08:09 PM
i had you on ignore but someone quoted you.

they weren't MADE to do anything. if you actually take note of what they say, Richard tried everything to stop them playing tennis so much :rolleyes: but then again, you're more obsessed with the Williams sisters than i am, so you tell me :)

Richard did not try to stop them playing too much tennis.

CoryAnnAvants#1
Nov 21st, 2004, 08:12 PM
I think many kids who train for tennis all day year round ultimately end up becoming pretty fucked up adults. Although there are some exceptions, for the most part on the pro tour the parents made the decision when their children were young that this was what they were going to do. So from the time they were five, they were hitting several hours a day most days out of the week. The kids probably didn't want to do it at first, but they start to get into it when ultimately that's all they know and that's all they have.

If the kid ends up becoming extremely successful, they have no regrets about their childhood because they're financially set for the rest of their lives. But for every kid like that, there's a couple thousand who bomb out on the satellite circuit, end up quitting because they can't make a living playing tennis and then wonder what the hell they're gonna do with the next 60-70 years of their life.

You miss out on so many important things with that kind of lifestyle. I know kids whose parents are extremely pushy with tennis and I can guarantee you that even in their late teens, they don't have a close friend (someone you shoot the shit w/about tennis at tourneys doesn't count), they've never been to a party, and they've never kissed a boy/girl. Ultimately, you start to resent missing out on that and it can lead to some people having an out of control lifestyle once they're done with tennis.

I strongly believe kids should be able to make their own decisions about their life, not their parents. If I had been playing four hours a day since I was 7 and truly committed myself, I firmly believe I'd have the potential to be a top 300 player in doubles on the ATP tour...but I made the decision that that was not what I wanted to spend my life doing. Everybody should have the option to choose their own path.

GoDominique
Nov 21st, 2004, 08:42 PM
i had you on ignore but someone quoted you.

they weren't MADE to do anything. if you actually take note of what they say, Richard tried everything to stop them playing tennis so much :rolleyes: but then again, you're more obsessed with the Williams sisters than i am, so you tell me :)
I tell you that you shouldn't be so naive. :) Hopefully someone quotes this so that you get to read it. :)

The bad thing is that "pushy" tennis parents are everywhere, not just on pro-level. (And of course the same goes for every other discipline.)

Even on club level you see parents whose behaviour and affection towards their children depends on their success on the court. :rolleyes: And even when those parents don't have the slightest clue about tennis. :o
Usually they are more disappointed when their child loses than the child itself. And usually these kinds of "careers" end with the boy/girl giving up tennis completely when he/she realises that he/she is only playing for the parents.

Parents coaching their children is always problematic too when it goes beyond just having fun on the court. Time to step back then and let a real coach do it.

Joana
Nov 21st, 2004, 08:48 PM
I tell you that you shouldn't be so naive. :) Hopefully someone quotes this so that you get to read it. :)

The bad thing is that "pushy" tennis parents are everywhere, not just on pro-level. (And of course the same goes for every other discipline.)

Even on club level you see parents whose behaviour and affection towards their children depends on their success on the court. :rolleyes: And even when those parents don't have the slightest clue about tennis. :o
Usually they are more disappointed when their child loses than the child itself. And usually these kinds of "careers" end with the boy/girl giving up tennis completely when he/she realises that he/she is only playing for the parents.

Parents coaching their children is always problematic too when it goes beyond just having fun on the court. Time to step back then and let a real coach do it.
:lol:
Sorry, SJW. :kiss:

Martian Willow
Nov 21st, 2004, 08:48 PM
I tell you that you shouldn't be so naive. :) Hopefully someone quotes this so that you get to read it. :)

The bad thing is that "pushy" tennis parents are everywhere, not just on pro-level. (And of course the same goes for every other discipline.)

Even on club level you see parents whose behaviour and affection towards their children depends on their success on the court. :rolleyes: And even when those parents don't have the slightest clue about tennis. :o
Usually they are more disappointed when their child loses than the child itself. And usually these kinds of "careers" end with the boy/girl giving up tennis completely when he/she realises that he/she is only playing for the parents.

Parents coaching their children is always problematic too when it goes beyond just having fun on the court. Time to step back then and let a real coach do it.


Interesting. ;)

Martian Willow
Nov 21st, 2004, 08:49 PM
Damn. :lol:

Maybe she has one of us on ignore? :)

GoDominique
Nov 21st, 2004, 08:49 PM
Thanks. :kiss:

grass roots
Nov 21st, 2004, 08:50 PM
Interesting. ;)

Ah come on! This is like an episode of the ‘Twilight Zone’, you find GoDominique interesting. ;)

Joana
Nov 21st, 2004, 08:51 PM
Oh dear :haha:

SJW
Nov 21st, 2004, 09:59 PM
I tell you that you shouldn't be so naive. :) Hopefully someone quotes this so that you get to read it. :)

The bad thing is that "pushy" tennis parents are everywhere, not just on pro-level. (And of course the same goes for every other discipline.)

Even on club level you see parents whose behaviour and affection towards their children depends on their success on the court. :rolleyes: And even when those parents don't have the slightest clue about tennis. :o
Usually they are more disappointed when their child loses than the child itself. And usually these kinds of "careers" end with the boy/girl giving up tennis completely when he/she realises that he/she is only playing for the parents.

Parents coaching their children is always problematic too when it goes beyond just having fun on the court. Time to step back then and let a real coach do it.

sorry you've lost me.

Originally Posted by GoDominique
So you think Venus and Serena weren't made to practice all day, every day?

"no". they have said as much.

better?

SJW
Nov 21st, 2004, 10:00 PM
Damn. :lol:

Maybe she has one of us on ignore? :)

MAYBE.....there's a life outside of wtaworld? :shrug:

apoet29
Nov 21st, 2004, 10:01 PM
Great question !
After my daughter saw some Venus and Serena tapes that I'd acquired, she suddenly became inspired and wanted to play. She was 5 yrs old. I signed her up with a coach and she took lessons for two years. The coach said that she had enormous ability and potential, and should continue. He said that she could "...smack the hell out of the ball." :lol: And that she picked up the techniques really fast and had great focus for someone so young. But I stopped her lessons because as her father, I had to decide whether academics or sports was more important. I decided on academics. So she's taking Kunk-Fu classes now and is excelling there. She's also classroom representative right now, tops in her 3rd grade class, and is only 8 years old trying to write books. :lol: I'm not bragging. Just so doggone proud of her. :bounce: :worship:
Your daughter sounds like an amazing little girl and she is lucky to have a father who encourages her so much.:kiss:

apoet29
Nov 21st, 2004, 10:02 PM
I'm sure there are as many kids who end up fucked up adults, and they didn't train for any sports.

The majority of kids spend 4 hours a day doing what...

Watching Tv.
Going on the Internet.
Playing video games.
Taking drugs.

No matter the choice who made in your life, you're always gonna feel like you missed something in your life. If you chose not to give a try to tennis, you can feel like if you missed the chance to become a profesionnal tennis player.
If you are dedicated in tennis, maybe you'll feel you lost a part of your social life. That's life, you can't always have everything.

And really, it's never too late to go to school, just like it's never too late to make friends or go to parties. :rolleyes:
Amen to that! Life is whatever you choose to make of it. :)

GoDominique
Nov 21st, 2004, 10:09 PM
"no". they have said as much.

better?
No. As I said, you shouldn't be so naive. :)

And only my first two sentences were directed at you. Sorry that you didn't realize. :)

*Karen*
Nov 21st, 2004, 10:14 PM
I would much rather training all day in Florida... As opposed to what??? Doing drugs, freezing your ass in the north going to school everyday or wasting time on the Internet. (Sounds like my life :tape: ).

I enjoy my life. I stay in Scotland, it's freezing. I like going to college or work every day. I like getting drunk every weekend. I had a great time experimenting with drugs. I sometimes enjoy sex. I like having the time to do whatever I want with my friends, movies, shopping, chilling, drinking. And I enjoy posting on this forum and similar ones. I enjoy playing tennis and other sports occasionally, on my own terms, not with a coach and a pushy father breathing down my neck. I love my freedom. It's something alot of these girls don't have. If you're playing tennis 6 hours + a day as a child, there's something wrong with your life. They have to worry about their careers from a very early age. I have about $200 dollars, instead of $200000000 but I wouldn't change anything about my life.

GoDominique
Nov 21st, 2004, 10:17 PM
MAYBE.....there's a life outside of wtaworld? :shrug:
MAYBE.....you have misunderstood two posts within one minute? :)

Martian Willow
Nov 21st, 2004, 10:22 PM
MAYBE.....there's a life outside of wtaworld? :shrug:

I didn't build my computer just so I could post on wtaworld. :) I use B flat suspended 4th a lot.

SJW
Nov 21st, 2004, 10:27 PM
MAYBE.....you have misunderstood two posts within one minute? :)

probably. i don't have time to play with you two, falcons are playing.

bye :)

~ The Leopard ~
Nov 21st, 2004, 11:32 PM
Childhood sucks. It's a condition to grow out of as soon as possible. I'm always amazed when adults sentimentalise it.

GoDominique
Nov 21st, 2004, 11:47 PM
Why? Just because you wouldn't like it, doesn't mean that it's wrong.

It's a different life, that's all.
Well, I guess you could argue that kids shouldn't do the same thing 6 hours a day in general, especially if it's hard work to your body.