Josh’s Fresh Take: August Edition

The Relationships We Build

Coach and Communications Lead, Josh Martin, weighs in on topics in the world of tennis and shares his two cents.

Being a tennis coach is incredibly rewarding! Seeing the progress your students make through the course of a camp, series of lessons, or program is incredible. Watching them improve on a skill you are teaching, i.e. making perfect impact with the ball at waist level out in front getting properly set up to make a great groundstroke, or finally hitting a rocket serve, definitely brings it back full-circle. These progressions are re-assuring as a tennis coach in that we are helping our students improve as a player. However, what I think often goes unnoticed is the impact we have on athletes off the courts. From kids to adults alike, it’s the relationships we build that may be the most rewarding of all.

This past year many coaches, including myself, connected with a family that was here in Canada for a year. The parents and the children were involved in programs, private lessons, and were at the Tennis Centre nearly every day. We often joked that they lived here and couldn’t go a day without tennis. Naturally, over the course of the year many of us grew close with this friendly family, seeing them day-in and day-out, until eventually this lovely family moved back to Korea indefinitely. I didn’t realize how much of an impact I had on them until I received a card with some nice messages from the children. It was a nice moment to stop and think about the effect that you can have on another individual as a coach aside from the obvious of trying to help their technique on the court.

It is the thought of a bigger picture: the role and privilege that we have as an authority figure. By giving adults and children the recognition, confidence and support they need, they not only grow as a tennis player but also as a person. It is the relationships we build on and off the courts that makes this job so enjoyable.

Josh’s Fresh Take, signing off.