Thursday, July 18, 2013


Today was my third day of tennis camp.

I didn't have a post for day two because it was pretty much typically the same thing as day one, but today was super special.  It was special because I got to go to a higher-level tennis camp.

See, at my high school, there are around three camps.  One for returning girls, one for returning boys, and one for incoming students.  I was placed in the one for incoming students since I'm going to be a freshman; however, at the end of the second day, the head coach invited me to join the camp for returning players since he could tell I'd been playing for a while.

I have been playing for around a year, since last April/May.  My dad taught me the strokes on and off through the years (he was a high school player), but since I was pursuing soccer, I wasn't very interested.  Then my team (signature level) disbanded, and I found myself without a team.  

After trying out for another team, I decided it was time to quit soccer.  I'd been playing since I was really young--six years old--and it was about a year ago that I began seriously playing tennis.

It was an up and down road, and I'm definitely not crazy good yet.  I can hold my own on a court, and I have good strokes, but my feet aren't very capable of actually getting to the ball and sometimes I become a human pretzel.  I've frustrated my coach more than once on my sad excuse for a forehand, although I absolutely love my backhand.  

But after a while, your strokes get smoother and it become more automatic and better, and I think maybe I've reached that point.  At any rate, I joined the camp for players who are returning to the team--sophomores, juniors, and seniors.  Right now I'm the second girl freshman to join the returning players camp.

There was a catch, though, in joining the RC (returning camp).  

First of all, it started at 7 in the morning.

7 in the morning is no joke, even for me (my mom's the type who gets up at 5 a.m., and she makes us get up before or at 9...if we're still sleeping).  

Second of all, the coach explained to me that all the players went to the weight room at 6:15.  I've never lifted weights seriously in my life (although at one point I could crack 55 pushups in one go).  He also stated that they ran a mile every day of camp (three times a week).  I haven't seriously run since one or two summers ago.  However, I thought I could manage.

And I'm glad to say I did manage to keep up!  I think I did well enough.  I woke up at 5:30, stalled for thirty seconds, and, very, very sleepily, I dressed.  It was still dark out.  Then I ate cut-up mangos, and bread with jam, and my mom (who was perfectly awake) drove me there.  I saw a stream of girls going to the weight room, and I just followed them.  

We put our bags in the weight room and went outside.  First, we ran a warm-up run around the high school campus.  Two really nice girls narrated a "tour" as we jogged.  Then we stretched.  After we used PVC pipes and stretched, although it was more like an interpretive dance than a stretch to me.  Imagine: twenty-thirty girls in a lopsided circle, legs spread apart, holding the thin pipes horizontally, and moving them slowly in a circle.  

Then Coach got us into groups.  Since the other freshman and I were new, he put us in a group with two other girls who were also really nice.  Then we proceeded to use weights and work muscles.  I'm not used to using weights, so it was a new horizon for me.

But our conditioning wasn't over.  Instead of running a mile, we ran five sprints (with our rackets).  I wasn't the last one, so I think I did well enough.

Then came the strenuous part.  We did jumps: there were those huge stadium stairs, and we had to use our arms and legs and propel ourselves up five times.  My legs were aching by the end, and now I'm sore...

We finally started playing tennis.  I warmed up with three other girls, and failed at feeding overheads.  Then the coach had us do drills that helped us gain skills needed to play doubles.  It was a little different because every time we missed a ball, we had to run a lap.  That's one of the nitty-gritty details of being a better player--you get better workouts.

We ended at nine, and I'd been up for almost four hours.  You'd think I'd be done with tennis, but no, at two, we're "scrimmaging" doubles matches with a different high school.

Definitely going to be sore tomorrow. 

1 comment:

  1. Wow! Thats tough. Wait--so you going to high school this year or are you just doing for hs?