By Hilary Mccarthy
DHAC Junior Tennis Academy Director
The holidays are over, the decorations are put away. As we begin a New Year many of us look back on the past 12 months. What happened? Did we accomplish those things we wanted to achieve? Lose weight? Change jobs? Eat healthier?
And what about our children? Did they achieve their goals?
These days, pressure on kids can be very high. The are expected to get into a top college, playing sports at a varsity or higher level. But what being happy and feeling successful?
Did you know a large percentage of children stop playing organized sports in the US after the age of 13? The reason? They aren’t the top player in that sport, they aren’t the star. So they quit. The pressure in children’s athletics is to be the best.
What ever happened to playing a sport for it’s own sake? What happened to fun?
Something I love about the sport of tennis is the variety of ages and abilities of people who play simply for enjoyment. I watch players from 5 or 6 years old to eighty and up. I love to see families on the court playing and enjoying time together. I have great memories of playing with my parents and siblings, and it’s something we still do, even if does get a little competitive!
We need to show our kids that they may not ever win Wimbledon or an NBA title, and that’s OK!
The best gift we can give our kids is a lifetime enjoyment of sports, activity and exercise. Once kids have mastered the basics of tennis, it is something they will have for their lifetimes. What a great gift to give your child.