QuickStart Tennis is the Best Way to Learn
If you haven’t heard of QuickStart and you have a kid who wants to learn to play tennis, listen up. QuickStart is a program that the USTA is promoting to get more kids involved with tennis. In an effort to make tennis more enjoyable and to re-energize America’s youth to the sport, the USTA is implementing new standards for 10 and under tennis. Firstly, court size has been reduced from 78 feet to 60 feet long for the 10 and under kids and to 38 feet for 8 and under kids. Secondly, USTA tennis is using lower compression balls, balls that have, respectively, 36%, 60%, and 78% the bounce height of a standard ball. The goals laid out by USTA are being met thanks to a huge marketing push (Michelle Obama even got involved) and local USTA tournaments getting on board. The format was adopted last year here in Boulder, Colorado. More kids are involved and the game is more accessible than ever. QuickStart is the medicine that youth tennis has needed for a long time. “Why?” you ask. Well, because lower bouncing balls and smaller courts allow kids to enjoy tennis the same way adults, who are taller and can cover more space, enjoy the game. This, instead of having to awkwardly hit overheads on every shot because the balls bounce so high or being able to only rally for two strokes because the court is too big. Read on.
Quick Start for Adults, too!
Try to think back to when you learned to play tennis. If you can remember it, you’ll recall that it was a frustrating (yet enjoyable) experience. We pushed (or were pushed) through the initial frustration and we were rewarded with tennis competency, and that’s the gift that keeps giving in terms of providing a lifelong sporting pastime. Adults, however, who for whatever reason didn’t learn to play when they were young, sometimes feel like it’s too late. It isn’t. QuickStart balls, in the hands of a good private coach, speed up the learning process! Less compression mean slower balls; less bounce means more balls put in play and therefore a large increase in quality time-on-court. As your instructor sees you improve he/she will move to the next higher compression ball until the student is playing with standard balls. The learning process, therefore, is a smooth gradient, with minimal frustration along the way. It really is the ideal way for any aged student to learn the game.
Don’t think Real Vs. Fake
I’ve had people ask, “So, when do you start them (students) on real balls?” meaning that somehow playing with lower compression balls and a smaller court is not real tennis. Pee Wee football doesn’t use NFL sized balls, do they? Tell an NCAA player he isn’t playing real football because the ball is different than an NFL regulation ball. You can imagine how that conversation might end. Soccer balls come in sizes suitable for youth soccer, right? The mechanics of tennis, like the mechanics of other sports don’t change just because the balls being used are more suitable for younger and beginner players. It’s real tennis; make no mistake.
Get Started Today!
It just so happens that a volley ball court is the same length, 60 feet, as a Quick Start 10 and under tennis court. Thus, with a portable tennis net, Tennis in the Gym is an ideal learning environment (Click the link to read about Tennis in the Gym). Courts all over the US are being painted with the new QuickStart dimensions. When you see a court that’s been market with the QuickStart dimensions, give it a try. You’ll see how points last longer and how you’ll be forced to think more about how to win. That is exactly the point. When you experience it you will understand why it is the wave of the future for youth and beginner tennis. Like they say, don’t knock it till you try it!