Tuesday, May 31, 2016

David Romero--Tennis in the Big Apple

David Romero joins us today for another Tennis League Network interview. He grew up in Corona, Queens in New York City and still resides in NYC today.

Growing up he played baseball and basketball, and he used to play drums in a band that featured Alternative and Rock music for a few years. Today, when he's not playing tennis he enjoys watching sports--basketball is right now is one of his favorite sports to watch.

David loves to travel with his family--he has a two year old daughter and has been happily-married for six years.

David's Profile:  53 wins 59 loses over 4 years of playing.


Hi David, and thanks for joining us. We want to share your thoughts and experiences playing in TennisNewYork.com, a division of the Tennis League Network franchise, and to learn a little more about you. Firstly, how long have you been playing tennis? What got you started and what has kept you going?

I used to play with my brother Eddie as a teen. He had access to his college tennis courts during the summer months. But I ended up putting tennis off after a couple of years only to pick it up again at age 34. I got the love of the game back when I visited my brother in Florida 4 years ago and I picked up the racket.

Florida is definitely a great place to play when it's not too hot. Which league are you a member of and how long have you been participating in it? Also, how did you end up finding out about us? 

I am a member of the Brooklyn-Queens Advanced 2 Spring league, playing at a 3.5 level. I have been participating in Tennis NY for 4 years, and I've been really active for the past three years.

I found out about the league as when I was at Astoria Park awaiting for my regular tennis partner to arrive.  I met a player who was at the time a participant in the league who recommended for me to play Tennis NY. So I looked into it and have been enjoying the competition ever since!

That's great. And how often are you playing, in general and with the league? 

I usually play 2-3 times a week year round. Single matches mainly during Tennis New York seasons and doubles during the winter months. I mostly play on weekend mornings, but if I can find time during the week I play a few more matches.

Is there anything that stands out to you about this league, or any positive experiences you'd like to share?

I like the competitiveness of the players, I am very competitive by nature so it makes for some interesting matches. I’ve found the competitiveness to be an awesome way to unwind and escape from our everyday stress. Plus I enjoy the mental and physical strength that comes from playing tennis, some matches more so than others but every match has something to offer.

Players have different styles, strengths and weaknesses. You need to make adjustments on the fly. 

Sometimes I've found out the hard way what happens if you don't make adjustments in a match. Momentum in a match can easily shift. You can be up one set and lose the match in 3 sets. This has happened in a recent match. You always must maintain your focus. I have developed many friendships and year-long rivalries. These rivalries are friendly and fierce. Over all the level of play is appropriated and well-grouped.

That's some good advice that all players should take to heart. Now that you’ve played a couple dozen matches in the league, would you consider any of your Tennis New York opponents rivals? 

There are a few that come to mind but without a doubt I would say Greg McDonald. Our legacy record is 7-7 right now. The matches are so close. The results are back and forth. Its always fun battling.

Any memorable matches? Either with Greg or any league members in general?

I've played a very competitive and feisty player named Yuri Krainov. We've played a few 3 setters with different outcomes for each player of late. We have long, grueling rallies and physically demanding long matches. A recent match had me sore for close to a couple of weeks.

Great stuff David, and thank you again for sharing all of this. Enjoy your matches this summer!

Thursday, May 26, 2016

What You Need to Know About Playing On Clay Courts

Tennis can be a tough sport to learn. We have to master footwork, ground strokes, serves and a variety of other tactics. But what makes tennis unique from, and often more difficult, than other sports is that there are different types of surfaces that we can play on!

Nearly all sports are played on just one court, but tennis can be played on a variety of courts like hard top, clay and grass. Though the game stays the same, the techniques and strategy must adapt to the differences in the court.

Think about the French Open—a tournament played on clay. It was dominated for many years by Rafael Nadal because he was simply the best at playing on clay. He mastered the clay court and it truly showed in competition.

If you’re a member of the Tennis League Network and find yourself playing regularly, or even occasionally on clay courts then you need to adjust your game to make sure that you’re competitive in all environments.

What Makes Clay Courts Different? 

You’ve probably noticed that clay courts aren’t found everywhere. That’s because clay courts require a bit of upkeep, and don’t do well in dry, arid climates. They can be difficult to maintain compared to hard courts, which is why the latter are almost always found in public.

In general, playing on clay slows everything down. Hitting winners on a ground stroke is going to be quite tough as players will have more time to attack the ball. Balls will also bounce higher, and players should prepare for that.

This should play into your grand strategy. Know that most of the game will be long, drawn out rallies at the base line. Because the ball is moving slow, you and your opponent won’t be reaching for balls, rather you will be more well prepared to respond to them. So instead of trying to put shots away with big winners, take more time to focus on your groundstrokes and be as accurate as possible, looking to make your opponent commit unforced errors.

Also, part of the ball bouncing higher has to do with the spin on the court. Clay courts exaggerate spin which not only makes the ball bounce higher than normal, but changes the way the game is played on clay. Do your best to avoid flat ground strokes, opting instead for slices and top spin wherever possible.

Footwork is something else that players will have to work on. It is much more difficult to master than on regular hard-top courts. Some players embrace sliding across the court, which is effective at moving quickly. However, be careful when doing so is sliding across the court can cause injury if the court is not well maintained.

Become King of the Clay 

If you really want to master tennis, then you’re going to have to learn how to play well on clay courts. And the best solution for this is to practice! Try to play competitively and practice as much as you can on clay courts if you know that future matches will take place on clay. Observe what shots are more effective, what footwork techniques work, and other strategies that will help you dominate the clay.

Check out Tennis League Network today!!   http://TennisLeagueNetwork.com

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Sharif Charles -- Tennis Jersey Style

Sharif Charles has reached veteran status with the Tennis League Network in just under two years—an impressive feat! Today we want to share Sharif's story and how his experience has been so far playing with the Tennis League Network.

Sharif was born in Raleigh, NC, but then moved to Newark, NJ as a young child where he spent his formative years. He graduated from a small college in NJ, William Paterson University, with an impressive double major in computer science and mathematics. He currently works for Merrill Lynch as a Financial Advisor.

A few years ago he moved to Levittown, PA, a town right on the New Jersey border, and that's where he started playing tennis again after a 5 year break. He joined the local tennis league, and also a USTA team. He then joined Tennis Philly after moving once again to the City of Brotherly Love.

Some of his hobbies outside of tennis are basketball, bowling, playing chess, and listening to all types of music. He loves watching sports, but roots for the Chicago Bulls, and San Francisco 49ers over the Philly teams (Can't blame him too much).


Hi Sharif, and thanks for joining us. Firstly, how long have you been playing tennis? What got you started and what has kept you going? 

I started playing in Newark, at the age of 12.  I picked it up after watching the Williams sisters. My mom purchased racquets for me and my friends and I went to park everyday in summer and practiced.

When I got to high school I played on the varsity tennis team. I played 1st singles throughout my high school career (my team sucked lol).

I didn't really get a hold of my game until I joined the Levittown league. That's when I really started incorporating strategy. My backhand is pretty solid now, and I love using my inside out forehand shot!

I love the mental side of tennis too. I love the fact that a player can win on any given day, and tennis is not always about being physical. I love that there are many different games, and I love that the players use these different types of strategies. I love that it is an individual sport, and you can only count on yourself to get through tough times.

Which league are you a member of and how long have you been participating in it? Also, how did you end up finding out about us? 

This is my second season as a member of the Men’s Competitive 3.5 league. I originally learned about the league through my friend Keith Wright.

Excellent. And how often are you playing, in general and with the league? 

I play about 3-4 times per week in this league. Overall, I try to pay at least 5 times per week.

Now that you’ve played a couple dozen matches in the league, would you consider any of your Tennis LA opponents rivals? 

I like playing Myke Hill and Keith Wright. I like that they are aggressive players, and their games suit my style of play. They push me to play better. We usually have battles when we play.

Can you tell us about any memorable matches that you've played?

My most memorable match was probably against Grant Scavello. I won the first set routinely, but he raised his game in the second set, and I was down 5-2. However, I knew if he won that set he may have won the match because of momentum. I came back from 2 breaks down and won the match.

When it comes to pro tennis, who are your favorite pro players? Why? 

My favorite player is Venus Williams on the women’s side. I love the way she plays. I love her aggression, and tenacity to never give up. She is an amazing player.

On the men’s side, my favorite player is Gael Monfils. I love how he is a defensive player,(like myself), but he also can go on the offensive at any given moment, and he is electric on the courts.

Anything else you’d like to add? 

I personally love the tennis Philly league because it allows me to play almost anytime and the players have great attitudes .

Sharif, thank you again for taking the time to do this interview. Have fun out there this Spring!

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Sam Pastor--Sports are Life

Sam Pastor is now a veteran player with Tennis Los Angeles. He moved down from Northern California, in the San Francisco Bay area, to LA.

Sam is passionate about sports and started working at a non-profit organization specializing in training and placing youth sports coaches. When he’s not playing tennis he likes to travel, cook and take pictures.


Hi Sam. We'd like to hear some of your thoughts and experiences playing in Tennis LosAngeles.com, a division of the Tennis League Network franchise, and to learn a little more about you. 

To start, how long have you been playing tennis? What got you started, as well as what has kept you going? 

I started playing tennis in high school, but to be honest, I've played WAY more tennis in Tennis LosAngeles over the last couple of years than I ever did growing up!

Tennis, in general, is a great game because it demands both physical and mental toughness. You have to be fit so that you can run for hours and hit the ball with consistency. But to win matches that is not enough. You must also be have mental toughness because big points are stressful. Also, tennis is a bit like chess. As the match progresses it's important to identify your opponents weaknesses and find ways to exploit them.

Which league are you a member of and how long have you been participating in it? Also, how did you end up finding out about your league? 

I’m a member of Tennis Los Angeles. I’ve been playing 6 months at the Advanced level (3.75), but I've been a member of Tennis Los Angeles since January 2014.

I first learned about Tennis League Network online, and I wanted to find a league that was competitive but also fun! And I didn't have the money to join a tennis club.

Glad to hear that! And how often are you playing, in general and with the league? 

Around 3-4 times a week.

Now that you’ve played a couple dozen matches in the league, would you consider any of your Tennis LA opponents rivals?

I play against a core group of people who live nearby. On Saturday mornings I like to play with Tynie Pukprayura. He is a 4.5 and I've lost every time we've played but each time I get better. If it wasn't for playing with Ty I don't think I would have done so well in the most recent playoffs.

Any memorable matches? 

This season I made the playoffs on the very last day of the season. In that match I lost the first set but stayed calm and won the second before taking the match in a third set tie breaker.

I made the playoffs as the 14th out of 16th seeds. After knocking out the 3rd seed in the first round I moved onto the quarter finals where I matched up with the same guy I had beat to make the playoffs on the last day of the season. I won the second match too and moved onto the semifinals.

In the semifinals I traveled to Cheviot Hills, a fancy neighborhood on the Westside, where I played the #2 seed. The match was close but I lost 6-3, 5-7, 6-3. I feel really good about this season and hope to improve on my result in Spring #2.

Spring #1 Draw:  https://www.tennislosangeles.com/4365/tournament_report

In the time you’ve been playing, what has made this league stand out from other tennis experiences you’ve had?

I like how I have lots of different people to play against. Everybody is fun to talk to and everybody has a different playing style.

My favorite part of this tennis league is how everybody is competitive but friendly. We all want to win but we want to win the right way. I'd call this healthy competition. It's amazing how much more exercise I can do when thinking about "how to win" rather than "how many more laps."

When it comes to pro tennis, who are your favorite pro players? Why? 

My favorite player to watch is Serena. It's amazing watching her serve and hit ground strokes.

My game most resembles Novak's. I hit the ball consistency, move my opponent around and use short angles.

Definitely a worthy comparison. And thank you Sam again for taking the time to do this interview. Keep up the good work!

Monday, May 2, 2016

40+ Leagues are Coming to a City Near You

To take our leagues to the next level, we plan on creating leagues for individuals age 40 and over in each city. These leagues are designed to bring together active players over age 40 so that they can compete against people of a similar skill level and age group.

The long term goal for the league is to have these 40+ leagues in every city. We will be getting the ball rolling soon, and
TennisDC's Summer Season #2 
will most likely be the first test of the 40+ league concept as we had dozens of players in DC who said they would be interested.

Assuming all goes well we would start running them in LA, Boston and Philadelphia this coming fall season. So while most cities will not see 40+ leagues in 2016, we hope to iron out all the kinks for a full 2017 roll-out.

The Importance of 40+ Leagues

For many active players, age is just a number. And in a perfect world, if the rating system works effectively then the ratings transcend age. Meaning that regardless of age two opponents will be matched up well. The system has worked well so far, but adding 40+ leagues could improve Tennis League Network (TLN) your on court experience moving forward.

For one, some players who are getting more advanced in age won't want to admit they maybe are not a 4.0 anymore because their movement isn't what it used to be. Tennis is a great sport for all ages, but it’s clear that age can slow us down.

Another big factor is that the league has more than just a competitive side. It’s a great social outlet for people to meet others in their area and network with those who also love playing tennis. Most 50 year olds and 20 year olds really don't have too much in common. By having people of the same age bracket play one another they have a much better chance not just being tennis friends but friends outside of tennis.

Drawing in the Crowd 

Tennis isn’t just a young man’s game. There are a lot of players who might have been hesitant to give this program a try because they figured it was geared towards younger people. By having clear-cut divisions based on age, we can assure people that they will be playing someone closer to their age.

To give members more flexibility, we hope to allow 40+ players to still compete in either league during the regular season. During the playoffs the draws will be based upon the age level divisions.

We look forward to rolling out these leagues soon, but don’t wait—get started with our league today. You can sign-up here to join a league near you.  http://www.tennisleaguenetwork.com

Saturday, April 9, 2016

Michael Jones--Tennis from Coast to Coast

Michael Jones has earned 'Veteran' status after playing 25 matches as a member of Tennis Los Angeles. Michael grew up in the northwestern part of England, and in 2012 moved to North Carolina. He lived on the beach for a few years and traded in the Atlantic for the Pacific, and now resides in sunny Southern California.

He works as a server in lovely Santa Monica and in addition to playing tennis enjoys hiking in the area.


Thanks Michael for joining us. We want to share your experience with TennisLosAngeles.com, a division of the Tennis League Network franchise, as well as a few additional questions about yourself. To get started, when did you first begin playing tennis and what has kept you going?

I started playing tennis approximately 8 years ago. I actually started at a later age, but it has really grown on me. I love everything about tennis. Singles and doubles. To me it doesn't matter who I play as long as I'm playing and staying competitive.

Which league are you a member of and how long have you been participating in it? Also, how did you end up finding out about us?

I haven't been in Los Angeles for long so decided to do some research about tennis leagues and LA. I luckily came across this one on the Internet.

Currently, I am a member of the elite division in Tennis Los Angeles.
I am currently rated 4.5 in the elite league although I originally thought I was a 3.5 but my game has improved so much in 2016.

I'm definitely glad I discovered this league. It is diverse and gives everyone the chance to play people at their level. I believe tennis is for everyone, whether you are beginner or advanced. The more you play the more you improve.

Glad to hear that! And how often are you playing, in general and with the league? 

I try to play 4-5 times a week. The more I play the more I improve. I like the fact that the league is flexible. I am able to find players at my level and can contact them directly to set up matches convenient for both me and the opponent.

After getting a number of matches under your belt, would you consider any of your opponents rivals?

One of my biggest rivals is Tim Griffin from the elite league. The first time I played him I lost in three sets in February. That pushed me to work harder on my game. Since then I've beat him three times. I'm definitely doing something right.

When it comes to pro tennis, who are your favorite pro players? Why?

My favorite pro is Andy Murray. I admire his playing style. He reminds me of myself, I like to think I get a lot of balls back in play. Tennis is not only physical. It is mental. I've had bad days and good days. I remember last year I lost a match and didn't play for two months. I have definitely matured over the last six months in terms of tennis. I motivate myself everyday to play. Some days I play three matches, if I had a choice I would play everyday several times. It's my passion!

Great stuff Michael, and thank you again for taking the time to do this interview. Have fun out there this Spring!

Monday, April 4, 2016

You’re Never Too Old to Play Tennis by Bryan Rosethal

Too often people give up physical activity as they age. Whether it’s achy joints or a lack of time, there are too many reasons people feel like they don’t have time to stay in shape. Tennis is no exception.

People see pro tennis players gliding back and forth across the court and think that they’re too old for that. This is not true!

In fact, tennis is a fantastic sport to play at any age especially as you get older. One of the reasons many people get started playing tennis is because they know it’s a game they can play the rest of their life.

Whether you’re looking to get started at an older age, or want to learn how to stay healthy while playing tennis, read these tips:

Preventing Injuries

A lot of older people are worried about getting injured or aggravating a preexisting injury when starting a new sport or physical activity. Tennis is one of the safest sports out there, and a perfect fit for all fitness levels.

That said, tennis injuries can happen. These may include a twisted ankle, tennis elbow, or wrist pain. Whether it’s an acute injury, or long-term pain do not wait to treat it!

Hopefully you won’t get injured playing tennis, but you should always be prepared. In general, you can help prevent injuries by staying in great shape. This may include doing regular agility drills, yoga, weight lifting, or even just walking. You’ll have to tailor your workout routine to any preexisting health conditions and your current fitness level. Injuries occur often because the body is not equipped to take on new physical stress, so you must adequately prepare your body beforehand.

Additionally, you should warm-up before any match. When your muscles are cold, you put yourself at greater risk of injury during a match. A warm-up routine should include head to toe exercises including stretching, jumping jacks, arm circles to name a few examples. Rallying back and forth with a partner is important to not just for your technique, but to acclimate to running back and forth on the court.

Proper Nutrition

Diet is so important for so many reasons. It determines our weight, our energy levels and even things like joint and bone health that many of us don’t think about. If you’re going to be an active tennis player, you must make sure to have a healthy, balanced diet to provide enough energy, but not cause fat gain.

Additionally, you always want to stay hydrated—both on and off the court.

Finding Partners

A lot of 40+ players may be scratching their head at where to find players. Definitely keep an eye on your local league as we hope to running 40+ leagues in most cities by 2017. Instead of looking to join an expensive tennis club, check out the Tennis League Network’s …to check out the competition in your area.

Monday, March 28, 2016

The Purity of Competition Rule and How it Defines TLN

       While a relaxing afternoon playing tennis with a friend or family member is always fun, there's nothing like grinding it out on the tennis court, fighting for every point against a player that is equally matched. It's this competitive nature of Competitive Tennis that keeps a large portion of the players to our league coming back season after season.

      In order to make sure all league participants are getting set up with well matched opponents Tennis League Network (TLN) uses this rule to guide our program:

That's why we have Rule #27--Purity of Competition Rule:
Rule #27) Purity of Competition Rule Tennis League Network reserves the right to move a player up or down a division/level based on how they performed in the previous season or during the CURRENT season.
A player can get promoted several ways.
1) By making the finals of their division's playoffs.
2) A player can also be moved up or down during the season based on how they have performed during the season. If a player has averaged a score of 12-4 or less for 3 of their matches they will be a candidate for moving up or down a division.
3) Inverse is true for a player that has lost 3 of their by an average score of 12-4 or less.


Why We Created This Rule

      To strive to be the best league on the market, Tennis League Network needed a way to bring quality of matching to the program. We wanted to ensure that people were getting matched up with people at their level consistently. Our veteran players return season after season because they feel pretty confident that they are getting matched with players that give them a tough, but fair match.

      When our league was created we used 'out of the box' thinking and forged our own path. We are more flexible than all the other leagues because we ARE willing to make the tough or sometimes easy decisions to move players up or down levels in season. We can do in season moves because we are not defined by a concrete schedule with a small set of players.

Changing Divisions

      It can be tough for players (especially new players who are the hardest to initially place) to be moved up or down a level. For those who are a candidate to move down, it can be a big blow to the ego. For those who are doing well, they want to keep winning and would prefer to stay where they are. However, it is in the best interest of EVERYONE in the league that people are put in the proper leagues especially after we've received the results/proof from the matches. We have many busy professionals/stay at home moms/college students who regularly set time aside to play tennis, and they expect that when they show up they'll be facing an opponent who is at their level.

      We don't just stop at one adjustment in a season, if the results dictate to move a player multiple levels WE WILL DO IT.   We are that FLEXIBLE.  The true definition of a Flex League.

SPECIAL NOTE:  We are also watching the tennis partner program, tennis ladder and tournament matches for ratings adjustments.   Sadly we've noticed a lot of NEW players under-rating themselves for their first tournament entry.  That's why in this case we are putting all NEW players into the highest level tournament.

The Tennis League Network Difference

      What makes our league different is an attentiveness to the needs of our players. We CARE about our players and their time spent playing tennis.  This rule is solely in place to make sure everyone is enjoying their season and return for future seasons.

      Not a member of Tennis League Network yet?


If you're looking to play competitive tennis matches in your area, make sure to Sign-Up for a local league.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Steve Ograyensek--Tennis Never Gets Old

Steve Ograyensek grew up in Western PA and spent some time in Detroit, Michigan--cities without much in the way of tennis facilities. Fortunately he's found his way down to Central Florida where there is plenty of tennis to keep him busy during retirement.

And Steve isn't just playing tennis, he's enjoying sports and activities including football, softball, biking, motorcycling, snorkeling, paddle boarding, and has recently started juggling. He believes 'the individual motor skills required of each sport greatly compliment each other in a synergistic manner in motor skills required for other sports' and it's for this reason he's crossed over into many disciplines.

He's got plenty of experiences to share and we were happy to have him tell his story.


Thanks Steve for joining us to answer a few of our questions. We want to share some of your thoughts and experiences about your passion for playing tennis, your experience with Tennis-Orlando.com a division of the Tennis League Network franchise, as well as a few additional questions. To get started, when did you first begin playing tennis? 

I always just wanted to play after seeing it on TV and having previously played baseball and football.  My father got me a cheap aluminum racket to get started in the late 1960s. I have played ever since but never formally coached on any organized team at any level.

As someone who has many years under their belt, what do you love about tennis? 

I always loved sports like playing football and baseball as a kid. Tennis is very similar to baseball such as fielding ground balls and making the play, batting, and pitching. In tennis you perform these skills every point with volleys, ground strokes, and serves, plus in baseball you're waiting around for a ground ball to be hit to you, and getting up to bat.

I love singles tennis in that it is an individual sport with no one to blame for lack of success but yourself. Also love the fact that tennis is relatively low impact, hard to get injured playing, and therefore can be played well into senior years. I want to remain competitive with younger opponents as long as I can.

That's definitely a worthy goal, and a great way to keep feeling young. Which league are you a member of and how long have you been participating in it? 

Tennis-Orlando Division A, Men's Advanced 4.0, playing in my 3rd season.

And how often are you playing, in general and with the league? 

Four to five times per week: Saturday with my girlfriend (USTA 4.5 rated); Sunday with old friends; Tuesday and Friday Mornings with retired friends; and a Tennis-Orlando league match when I can schedule it during the week

As someone who plays a ton of tennis, what is it about this league that makes it different from others?

Meeting interesting people in different professions from many different places and making new friends. So far I have played league players from Brazil, Italy, Cuba, Peru, Spain, and Puerto Rico. Two were former members of national Olympic teams (not in tennis). Several were former collegiate tennis players. Professions include sports director, web application designer, MD /Psychiatrist, computer programmer, lawyer, salesmen, and local small business owner.

Ages range from the mid 20s to over sixty. ( I believe I am the oldest player at 61). All are highly competitive and excellent sportsman. The tennis league seems to attract accomplished individuals from all over the world.

You must have had a lot of interesting conversations with all of them. We’re there a lot of particularly memorable matches as well? 

A few come to mind:

1) Marathon 2.5 hour match with Yamil Flores, momentum flowing back and forth in 92 degree Florida afternoon heat; no one wanted to give up, but I prevailed. Played Yamil 3 times so far, prevailed each time, but all close matches
2) Prevailed over Mark Ruiz, a much younger superior player (also former US Olympic Diver), in three sets. I should have lost but was "in the zone" and could do no wrong that match. I am 1 for 3 with Mark so far.
3) Getting 3 games in the first set off Brad Ellenwood, a younger, superior 6 ft 4 in former collegiate player. Lost second set 6-0. I am 0 for 3 with Brad so far.

Of those players, would you consider any of them rivals? 

I enjoy the challenge of playing Brad Ellenwood and getting any games knowing he is the far younger, taller, superior player. I’m sure finally beating him would be pretty rewarding.

When it comes to pro tennis, who are your favorite pro players? Why?

Roger Federer; poetry in motion. He makes everything look easy. Conditioned to the point where he plays a long five set match and can meet with the Press afterward as if he had done nothing physically demanding.

Do you have any other interesting comments about your experiences with the league before wrapping up? 

I like the user friendly web site listing all publicly accessible courts, league rules encouraging players to share fees and meet half way, and completely flexible scheduling. Also like the profile information available on opponents including their legacy match records, favorite players, shots, preferences, and photos.

Great stuff Steve, and thank you again for taking the time to do this interview. Have fun out there this Spring! 

Thursday, March 17, 2016

How to Prepare for Your Spring Tennis Leagues

Spring has finally sprung! After a cold winter for the northerners, the weather is finally starting to warm up which means it’s time to dust off your tennis racquet and hit the tennis courts. But before you dive right into one of our Spring leagues, there are a few things to remember:

Check Your Health 

Because of the cold weather, winter can keep us inside more than we like. This means that weight gain is all too common because of lack of exercise. These extra pounds can really creep up on you and can definitely have an impact on your game whether it’s achy knees or more huffing and puffing than usual.

To make sure everything is in good order, it’s always a good idea to get a yearly physical, especially before staring up your Spring tennis league. Doctors will be able to mitigate any health issues that may potentially hold you back from getting the most out of your league.

The league also suggests that players use shorter formats to start the season off. Play 10 game pro sets or 2 sets with a super tie-breaker. There's no need to stress your body out by trying to play a grueling 3 set match until your body is ready for it.

Make Sure Your Gear is in Order 

Don’t wait until your first match to find out that you need your racquet restrung! Go through all your tennis equipment including your racquet, shoes, and bag to make sure that they are in order.

This is also a good time to replenish your tennis balls, as no player wants to use a set of tennis balls that’s been sitting in a closet for several months.

Definitely check in with our partner Tennis Warehouse to pick up any necessary supplies you might need.

Get Into Shape 

If you find that your health is not quite where you want it to be, than you better get down to work in the gym. Basic cardiovascular exercise like running, using a machine like the elliptical, or doing some agility drills is an excellent idea.

Remember to take it easy at first. Your body needs time to acclimate to this new activity so start out at a slower pace, and work your way up until it’s time to get started with regular league matches. Getting into shape also means eating healthy. Not only will this help you shed any extra weight you’ve packed on, but a good diet will help you recover from workouts faster.

It's definitely a great idea to cross train in between matches so you're body can get stronger for future matches.

Set Goals 

Although your New Year’s Resolutions are a few months behind you, that’s no reason to not set goals for your 2016 tennis activity. You can choose to design your goals in several different ways. One example would be to set a goal of playing at least two matches per week. Another goal would be to win 10 matches in a season. Another goal to try for is to make the playoffs for each and every season you enter in.  Of course trying to win a championship will be on a lot of people's goal list.  In general, your goal should get you playing more frequently and ENJOY YOURSELF ON THE TENNIS COURTS.

Sign-Up For a Local League 

The best way to play regular tennis matches with those at your level is to sign-up for a seasonal league with the Tennis League Network. Our league guarantees at least 6 playing partners at your level in your area, although the pool is usually closer to 15+ players per division.

The league allows for flexible scheduling. This is great for hard-working professionals and busy parents who feel like they just can’t find time to fulfill their love for tennis and balancing the sport with their lifestyle.

Don't let this Spring season pass you by, find your local league and Sign up today.