Maybe it’s the time of year, but on my drive to Richard Craig this weekend, the lyrics from the Chicago song, Saturday in the Park began to run through my mind. There are descriptions in the lyrics of people laughing, talking, singing, and it notes the 4th of July.
Well, this Saturday in the park didn’t have a man selling ice cream, but it certainly had another successful session of Above the Net tennis for our Junior players. Both age groups started with some agility training and fancy footwork. They even had a few rotations with the medicine ball to strengthen core muscles. The speed in those professional backhands doesn’t come from the arms only.
This Saturday did, however, have people laughing. So much joy and enthusiasm from the younger group was perfectly audible when those little giggles of excitement trickled across the court. The younger group spend some time playing agility games that also required them to keep their eyes on the ball and move themselves with the ball. A sneaky way to begin introducing court awareness, too.
As the older Junior players began to work on serves, one of the young men turned to the player beside him and asked, “Don’t we just throw the ball up and hit it.” She replied, ‘Well… yes.” He then added, “Oh, that’s easy.” She just kind of looked at him, and I said, “It does sound that way. We’ll see.” He found out there might be a little more to that skill, and he also stayed on the service line for extra practice when others moved on.
Yes, it was Saturday in the park. And, it was just before the 4th of July. People were laughing, talking, and maybe even singing. But, they were most definitely swinging tennis rackets.