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Old Oct 15th, 2011, 07:27 PM   #31
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Re: When did you start playing tennis?

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Originally Posted by jrollaneres25 View Post
Wooooow. How'd u manage not to pick up a racket??
Well, the first 3 years it didn't even come to my mind to start playing, don't know why.
Then I was thinking about playing more and more and I finally started this year. And now I even can't stand it if I can't play for one week or more.
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Old Oct 15th, 2011, 07:47 PM   #32
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Re: When did you start playing tennis?

I started playing when I was 7yo and did group lessons until I was 10.

I was watching tennis on TV all the time one summer and this one time, my dad was driving past some tennis courts where lots of kids were having lessons. He noticed me watching them and signed me up for group lessons for the following term. It was probably the only time in my life where I willingly went to participate in something without giving it a second thought. I had never played before so I didn't know what to expect or know how good I could be.

In my first lesson, I was shown by an assistant coach how to swing a forehand and then he got me to do it. He fed me 5 shots and I hit EVERY single shot over the net! I surprised myself and the coach, who wasn't convinced that I had never played tennis before. The assistant coach told the head coach what I had just done and I was quickly taken aside to join the head coaches' group. After 3 months, I was put into an older group, which meant that I was hitting with 11 and 12yo kids. I was so scared of them because (to me) they were hitting the ball really hard and I was nervous that they would hit me. I know that they didn't like me because every time we had to pair up, no one wanted to go with "the little kid." Anyway, what I had over the "big kids" was that even though they hit harder than me, I could still get the ball back over the net more times than them. I learned to play smarter. I didn't grow up to be very tall at all, so those early experiences came in really handily!

After a year, I was invited to join the head coaches' training squad. This was for kids who showed tournament potential. I had seen some of those kids hit just before their training and I had dreamed of one day joining them, but maybe not until I was in high school. So there I was, a Year 4 kid, hitting with 13, 14, 15yo teenagers! I wasn't as scared of them anymore because of my first experience hitting with older kids. I did that squad for two more years and played regional junior tournaments.

The next step, however, was being invited to join a State training squad. I was so happy to get an invitation in the mail. It was like getting a letter from Hogwarts haha! Sadly, I was forced to decline the invitation because the timing of the squad clashed with classes that I had to do outside of school. I wanted to drop those classes and play tennis instead but my parents wouldn't allow it. My parents said that I could join the State squad once I was in Year 8. I was somewhat placated by that. After all, it was only another 2 years. It felt like a lifetime!

When the head coach heard that I had declined the State squad invitation, he was quite dismayed. He had to write in to the State tennis association with a list of potential players, get a scout to come down and watch us play. Of the 10 names that the head coach gave the scout, only 3 invitations were sent out. It was me, another boy (who was better than me - he always beat me in tournaments!) and the best girl in our group. We were all 10yo at the time and were good friends. I didn't know any of that and felt so bad. If the head coach only knew how badly I would rather be training than doing educational classes! So he suggested to my parents that I do private lessons instead. He felt that I had outgrown his squads and needed more special attention. The other two kids were already doing private lessons. The head coach made a sales pitch to my parents telling them that he could take me to a professional level and that I could play tournaments around the world like his son does (or rather, did). My parents said that they would think about it to his face, but later in the car, said that the coach was just trying to make money off of us. That was the last time that I was ever at his coaching school.

I didn't give up on tennis. I kept playing. I used to hit against the wall EVERY SINGLE DAY. When I started attending private school, they offered tennis as a sport. You had to go through a trials process and any kid who was anyone (not all, but most) attended one of those 7 private schools and played tennis for them. I was at one of them. I passed the trials easily and made it into the top team but took note that I was also in a team with State-ranked kids. They were REALLY good. We practiced twice a week and played against one of the other private schools on Saturdays. There was surprisingly a lot of bitchiness amongst the boys in the top team. I was the target of a lot of abuse because I wasn't State-ranked and didn't play tournaments that offered junior ranking points.

We played an inter-house competition at the end of every year and I was the top player for my house. I beat two of the State-ranked players, who were ranked 2 and 3 on our school team. We won the cup that year! So amazing! We didn't have a strong team either and not everyone on the team actually played tennis as their chosen sport. It was pretty rag-tag. But what some of the lower-ranked guys lacked in technique and finesse, they made up for in tenacity and persistence. It was such an honour to play alongside those guys. I was never invited back to join the State squad because I had no one to vouch for me anymore. I didn't care so much. I still had 4 years left of high school and was just happy to be playing as often as I liked at school.

I'm going to stop there with my story because it's already gone past the thread title, which was, "when did you start playing tennis?" and I've already answered that haha.

I'll leave it there by saying this: I'm not the sort of person to give up easily, but I don't think I would have believed in my ability for tennis as much today if I hadn't hit those first 5 forehands over the net 26 years ago in my first group lesson.
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Old Oct 15th, 2011, 07:50 PM   #33
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Re: When did you start playing tennis?

I was 13 So 5 years. Around the same time I started watching tennis actually. Quit volleyball to do it since they were in the same season in my high school.
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Old Oct 15th, 2011, 08:56 PM   #34
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Re: When did you start playing tennis?

- told my parents that I wanted to play tennis at the age of 5 (18 years ago)

- started hitting against the wall of my home when I was 10, smashing windows many times

- finally started training when I was 12. I was better than most, played some tournamens, but I was still a nobody

- stopped playing when I was 15 because I went to high school in another town

- didn't pick up my racket for the next 4 years because it was too painful for me living with the fact that tennis is just not going to be my life

- after that one time I played, I decided not to wake my demons ever again

- met a girl at my university who played tennis in the same town 2 years ago, had the same coach etc., decided to hit with her a couple of times to see how it goes, and it was cool

- started playing two days a week this year with some of my friends, now I'm obsessed with tennis again, this time only as a recreational player. The only problem is that my friends aren't that much into it

- stopped playing in July because they removed the nets from courts which were for free (I had to drive to another town anyway, but I'm not ready to pay almost $20 for an hour!)

- planning to start again as they are about to put them back

- somewhere deep, deep inside still hoping to achieve Muster's 2nd career
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Old Nov 22nd, 2011, 04:23 PM   #35
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Re: When did you start playing tennis?

and the last story
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Old Nov 22nd, 2011, 04:40 PM   #36
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Re: When did you start playing tennis?

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Originally Posted by Adrian. View Post
12 is also late, isn't it?
Late for what exactly? If you're playing for fun, excercise and recreation in general it really doesnt matter what age you start
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Old Nov 22nd, 2011, 04:40 PM   #37
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Re: When did you start playing tennis?

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Originally Posted by Brenda Mensah View Post
Late for what exactly? If you're playing for fun, excercise and recreation in general it really doesnt matter what age you start
I meant for becoming a Pro
If you play for fun, you can start with 60 or even more
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Old Nov 22nd, 2011, 04:44 PM   #38
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Re: When did you start playing tennis?

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I meant for becoming a Pro
If you play for fun, you can start with 60 or even more
oh is that poster planning on becoming a pro?
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Old Nov 22nd, 2011, 04:53 PM   #39
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Re: When did you start playing tennis?

2006 at 12
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Old Nov 22nd, 2011, 07:30 PM   #40
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Re: When did you start playing tennis?

No idea. Long, long ago. I played the most while in college, though. Never had formal lessons.

How I wish now that I had done something with tennis or baseball.

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Old Nov 22nd, 2011, 07:41 PM   #41
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Re: When did you start playing tennis?

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Originally Posted by Mixal View Post
- told my parents that I wanted to play tennis at the age of 5 (18 years ago)
Same here. Started playing the game when I was around 13, though
Some years after started watching tennis on a regular basis:cheers:
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Old Nov 22nd, 2011, 09:58 PM   #42
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Re: When did you start playing tennis?

Started when I was 7. Back when racquets were made of wood and heavy as sh*t. Even the junior ones.

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- started hitting against the wall of my home when I was 10, smashing windows many times
Yes, I drove my parents nuts. We had a house that was painted yellow, and every couple of months they were out painting the wall on the back porch to cover up all the mud spots from my rallies....
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Old Nov 23rd, 2011, 02:02 AM   #43
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Re: When did you start playing tennis?

2006 when my mom married my step dad because he is a teaching pro. I was 11 years old
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Old Nov 23rd, 2011, 11:23 AM   #44
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Re: When did you start playing tennis?

My history:

- watching tennis since I was 2 or 3 years old. My parents told me that I was staring Graf, Navratilova or Evert when they were at TV

- told my parents that I wanted to play tennis at the age of 4-5, but they told me (specially my father that is a pretty conservative and old-minded man), that it was a girly sport and that they had no money to take me to the next big village (7km), while my big brother have been taken to a town (30km from home) since he was 5 in order to play soccer

- started hitting against the wall and playing racketball in my village since I was 5-6 yo. and playing plenty of local tournaments until I was 17 and I moved to a big city.

- starting college and working part time at 18. Went mad with parties and other stuff!

- start playing tennis (with coaching) first time when I was 21-22 and I had a few savings. I remember my coach was really impressed when I told him that I never played in a tennis court before

- I did coaching for about 1 year and start playing some social tournaments in the city, but for personal reasons I quit coaching when I was 22-23. Then, only played few times with friends.
- With 25 I move to Ireland and I started tennis coaching again, and so playing tennis regularly. Now I'm in UCD team and representing my club (MountPleasant) in Dublin tournaments.

- Also, playing GLTA tournaments since last April!



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Old Nov 23rd, 2011, 09:38 PM   #45
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Re: When did you start playing tennis?

2000, 11 years ago (age 9)
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