My passion for tennis Essay
My passion for tennis
As a young girl, I loved being outside. Whether it was playing sports with my sister and father, riding my bicycle or swimming with my family, I just loved the outdoors. My passion for tennis started when I moved to Las Vegas for my father’s work. My parents signed me up in several sports ands activities such as dance, soccer, gymnastics and tennis. Out of all these sports, I decided to continue playing tennis. I was 4 and half when I started kindergarten and it was difficult at first to go from French to English. My mother came to school with me and translated everything that the teacher wrote on the board. I have to say that going from French to English was probably the hardest thing about moving.
A few weeks after school started, my parents signed me up for tennis camps. My coach, Gordon Hammond, had played for a division 1 university and happened to be from Vancouver, Canada. Those tennis camps helped me with my English, helped me make new friends and it was a fun game/hobby that soon turned into a passion. Every morning before school, I had a private lesson with Gordon and then headed for class. As soon as I got back from school, I would put my tennis clothes and go hit tennis balls with him. He was such a passionate coach which helped me love tennis. To be honest, I could have spent 3 or 4 hours on a tennis court and still wanted to hit. At 8 years old, I started playing competitive tennis. Competing against other girls was fun and I liked the challenge that it brought me.
After living 4 years in Las Vegas, my family and I moved back to Montreal, Canada. The transition was even more challenging both in tennis and at school. Playing indoors was difficult because of the fast court surface. Learning French is much harder than learning English so I was challenged every day. I got into a tennis sports-study program in high-school. The schedule required that I attend class in the morning and practice in the afternoon, 5 days a week. I would practice on court for 3 hours and off court for another hour for conditioning. A typical practice consisted of warming up, hitting in mini tennis and then moving back to hit full court. We did a lot of drills, points, footwork drills, serving and returning and volleying. My coach in Canada helped me build my perseverance and hard work ethic because he was strict and demanding. During those 5 years of sports-study, I played a lot of local, regional and national tournaments.
For 2 years I was part of the Tennis Quebec tennis program (State level) because my ranking was in the top 10. I played a few Quebec Championship and finished 2nd in doubles in one of them. The highlight of my junior career was playing against Maria Sharapova’s cousin at the Orange Bowl in Florida (international sanctioned tournament). During the 2 weeks in Florida, I played 5 tournaments and won the “Casely” tournament. I got to play against international kids, which was fun. That experience in Florida made me grow as a person and as an athlete. At 16, I suffered an injury to my left knee which required surgery.
That happens when you play a physical sport like tennis, lots of stop and go, left to right, front and back. Fortunately, I had the Montreal Alouettes (Montreal Pro Football team) surgeon take care of the surgery. I was sidelined for almost 1 year but recovered well. It had to push myself and it helped me build self-esteem and faith. It also took a lot of pride and belief because sometimes I just wanted to quit. With the great support of my parents and my coach’s, I fully recovered and I obtained a tennis scholarship at East Central University. Ever since, we accomplished as a team 2nd place in Conference last season and I had a winning record. Along the way, I’ve met a lot of people and built new great friendships.
Tennis will always be part of my life and hopefully when I have my kids, they will carry on my passion for this sport. I’m very blessed and fortunate to have been supported by my family, my coaches and my friends because without them, I probably wouldn’t be where I am today.
University/College: University of California
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Date: 9 January 2017
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