Tennis Tennis Parentsthe Impact on Tennisparents and Tennis

Tennis like any other sport requires dedication, hard work, lots of practice and getting transportation to your local tennis club.  Over the years I have witnessed how tennis effects young people and how parents can be an integral part of a child’s tennis experience.  When I hear the term TENNIS PARENTS I think of the Soccer Moms or Football Dads and the obnoxiously involved and overpowering characteristics that sometimes go along with that, this can be the case in tennis as well but it doesnt need to be.

Parents as Coaches

Tennis is an expensive sport to play competitively and many times parents take on the role of primary or secondary coach status when a child first starts out.  First come the group lessons at the local park along with a few tennis lessons at the local club.  Parents begin to make tennis a regular scheduled event and become ‘Tennis Parents’ hauling the kids from practice to practice.  Seperating the coach and parent role is important and needs to be done in the early days.  It is not always easy to support the child in a sport without discipline but this sometimes comes at the cost of the family unit.  What happens on the tennis court needs to stay there and not follow the family home. 

Competition

The tennis parents soon find that the child is becoming better at the sport and local practice now becomes 3 to 4 times per week, group lessons along with private lessons, the equipment expenses, racket restringing and other misc costs start adding up.  One parent finds themselves dedicating more and more time to the child’s tennis pursuits.  This is not necessarily a negative thing but the meshing of parent and coach and agent kind of status can be. 

Financial Pressures

The costs are mounting up and the house is mortgaged and double mortgaged to help pay for your child’s travel expenses to tournaments and training.  Pressure mounts at home and now the term ‘Tennis Parents’ carries a lot of weight and pressure.  This might not always be the case and especially with only recreational players but the finances can take a toll.

Although Tennis Parents are just like any parents wanting their kids to learn and grow, sports sometimes overtakes the enjoyment and we forget what it was all about when we first began.