Learning Tennis is not unlike any other sport. It can take 4-6 years of playing in the beginner/intermediate level before kids are ready to advance. There’s no shortcuts either…most of the time kids get older and appear better but are still very much beginners. Some kids commit to private lessons and think they are getting better, but it’s usually in a controlled environment. Unfortunately tennis isn’t played in a controlled environment. If kids start between the ages of 5-8, and stay with it consistently, there’s a good chance they will be an advanced player by the time they are 12-14; especially if they play some other sports. If the kids start in middle school, there’s a good chance that making it to the advanced level will still take 4-6 years and many more hours per week than if they had started at a much younger age.
Being an advanced player is a great opportunity for kids. Tennis leagues exist all over the country and as adults they will confidently be able to join and play for their entire life. An advanced player can easily join his high school team with success and with some commitment can easily play for a university. As an advanced player, they will be able to help many people in their community and family play tennis as well.
While anyone can play tennis no matter what level they are, there is this phenomena that people tend to do more of what they are good at. If kids don’t feel they are good at tennis, it’s unlikely they will want to play on their school team or join their peers as adults in leagues and other social events.
I started playing recreational tennis at 14 after playing all sports regularly. Many times I thought that I wasn’t good enough. The truth was that I was still an intermediate player and it wasn’t until I spent many more years and hours practicing and playing matches that I would become an advanced player. I only learned when I was playing at the right level and unfortunately I played #1 for my high school and most of the time that I competed I was playing way beyond my true level.
The Junior Tennis World Tour is committed to making this opportunity available with opportunities to join just once per week or several times per week year round. This includes playing with several other kids, many levels of play, and practice/play methods that have proven successful for all kids.