Preparing for Next Year

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As I sit at my kitchen counter typing this piece, my son is flying home from California. He’s been out there since Thursday taking “official visits” at two universities. Wanna know what I’ve heard from him since he left?

Yep, that’s the extent of my communication with my son since I dropped him off at the Atlanta airport early Thursday morning.

All weekend, I’ve been in kind of a funk. Nothing specific was wrong with me – I wasn’t feeling sick per se – but something was off. I really didn’t More >

BNP Paribas Ball Kids

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Image courtesy of BNP Paribas Open

Does your junior player want to be close to the action at Indian Wells this March? The BNP Paribas Open is now accepting applications for ball kids. It’s a pretty cool gig – click here to listen to what US Open ball kid Palmer Clare had to say about his experience earlier this year! Please see the press release below for details. Hope to see you there!

The BNP Paribas Open, the largest WTA and ATP World Tour combined two-week event in the world, to be held More >

Rest Peacefully, Sean Karl

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Photo borrowed from Pray for Sean Karl Facebook group

Last night, as my husband and I were driving home from Athens after celebrating our daughter’s 23rd birthday, I received an email from Colette Lewis (ZooTennis) letting me know that a fellow tennis family was mourning the loss of their son. Sean Karl, oldest son of Laurie and Mike, big brother to Steven and Justin, friend and teammate to so many, lost his fight with Ewings Sarcoma yesterday afternoon.

It has to be a parent’s worst nightmare. More >

W with an Asterisk

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I don’t usually write about my own experiences on the tennis court. They’re usually not all that interesting or useful for the readers of ParentingAces. However, today’s match is an exception.

Right now, I’m playing on two USTA 4.5 women’s teams, one on Thursdays and one on Saturdays. I typically play singles on both teams.

For today’s match, I really had to gear myself up to play. It’s been pretty chilly here in Atlanta for the past week or so, and I’m not a fan of the lower temperatures. More >

Back to those Thanksgiving Tournaments . . .

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Image courtesy of Chase Sapphire

After I wrote my piece about the upcoming Thanksgiving tournament options, I realized that I neglected to mention that, at least in the Southern section, we also have a designated tournament (sectional L2) that same weekend competing with the Eddie Herr qualies, the L2 National Selection tournaments, and the L4 Open Regional tournaments. What’s interesting about the designated tournament is that it is worth the same number of sectional ranking points as both the More >

USTA Addresses High School Tennis

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As I wrote in my last post, I had the opportunity to attend a couple of sessions of USTA’s Tennis Development Workshop this past weekend. The first had to do with junior tournaments, and the second had to do with high school tennis. It was led by Glenn Arrington, USTA’s national manager of the Tennis On Campus program.

Glenn started the session by having everyone in the room take a pop quiz (which I failed miserably!). It included questions about how many high school tennis players there are More >

The Future of Junior Tournament Tennis in America

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Image provided by USTA

Yesterday, I had the opportunity to attend a very interesting session of USTA’s annual Tennis Development Workshop being held in Atlanta. The session was titled “The Future of Junior Tournament Tennis in America” and was led by Bill Mountford, USTA’s Director of Junior Tournaments. The format was more of a roundtable discussion with short breakout sessions between Bill’s presentation of information regarding the current state of the junior tournament landscape. About 50% More >

Another Thanksgiving, Another Tournament

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This year as always, many families with junior tennis players will be spending their Thanksgiving holiday at a tournament. For the very top tier of players, that may mean the Eddie Herr down in Florida. For others, it may mean one of the new National Selection (Level 2, 64-draw) tourneys or maybe one of the new Regional Segments (Level 4, 32-draw). For my family, it’s the National Selection (L2) in Montgomery, Alabama.

Will your family be traveling Thanksgiving weekend? Which tournament are More >

First Pro Tournament

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My son has experienced all sorts of “firsts” lately: he won his first national doubles title; he won all his backdraw matches in a sectional designated; he earned his first ITF main draw berth and subsequent ranking points; and, most recently, he played in his first Futures tournament.

For almost a year now, my son has been asking to play in a Futures event. In case you’re new to this stuff, the Futures circuit is basically the ground floor of professional tennis. These events are populated More >

What A Difference 2 Years Make!

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Image courtesy of www.ITFtennis.com

Almost exactly two years ago, my son played in his very first Junior ITF tournament in Waco, Texas. While it was an excellent learning experience for him to understand what he needed to do to reach the next level, it was also a very quick experience in that he lost his first qualifying match pretty handily. A couple of weeks later, he played in his second Junior ITF tournament near our home in Atlanta. That time, he got through the first round of qualies but More >

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