Not Enough Hours In The Day!!

Discussion in 'Junior League & Tournament Talk' started by ga tennis, Jan 10, 2013.

  1. ga tennis

    ga tennis Hall of Fame

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    THANKS PRO TOUR. She wants to be there bad but we just cant make it happen. Im just gonna take it day by day. If its meant to be it will be. I just want her to be in that environment everyday.
     
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  2. Pro_Tour_630

    Pro_Tour_630 Legend

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    yeah he is on a mission, funny I do not want that mission for him, he is gifted in school and will get an academic scholarship like his cousins, I never even read to the kid at all, he never spoke until he was 5.:confused: he is the type of kid that studies for 1/2 hour and aces everything like my niece whom I taught. life is always the opposite. You try hard and want the best for your kids but in the end your plans may not be what you set them out to be.
    if she wants to be there and your wife is ok with it and somehow you can keep the house and get a job there while your wife works, then go for it and take a chance and see what happens. You are three hours away and can always go home every other weekend. But you need $3000 a month plus expenses, I wish I can give it to you, I really do. But somehow some sacrifices are needed. Take out a loan on the house for 30K and see what happens. Aren't there some rich relative you can persuade to try on this project. Worst case you lose the 30K, heck we all have bought 30K cars that lost all value in 5 years. :oops: I have a rich brother whom you met that is going to finance my project. He said even if it fails he is willing to do it because it will be off our backs and we will never say what if's. TCf has some $ on the side for the fitness center he sold, he is going to tap into that for sure. And when it is all gone either he has a champion or not. We will see. But for sure it is going to one hell of ride which he is going to enjoy every minute. If his plan fails he will have a business for his daughter to run for sure and that is the best plan IMO.
     
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  3. Soianka

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    I don't know about taking out a loan and all of that, but there's got to be a way to make it work with the academy and GA Tennis' daughter that is affordable.

    I would think there is something that can be worked out between GA Tennis and the head coach because GA Tennis has a lot to bargain with also being a tennis coach and being a certified teacher.

    Perhaps the academy would hire him as a coach and this could offset his daughter's tuition or perhaps they could work something out with GA Tennis running and designing a homeschool program for the academy (assuming they don't already have one) given his teaching background...and that too should be able to offset his daughter's tuition.

    I just don't see how any academy would turn down a dedicated student and a dedicated dad who has a lot to offer them.
     
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  4. Pro_Tour_630

    Pro_Tour_630 Legend

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    ^^^^not gonna happen we already discussed the barter issue, that will be ideal, just like harrison father, there is not enough money, someone has to pay, it cost money to run an academy. GA need to find a job that makes $3000 a month in the new area, easier said than done, I know it is hard but those are the facts.
     
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  5. hhollines

    hhollines New User

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    GA, I hope we meet one day as I think we (and our daughters) have a lot in common. We live in a weaker section and it's really hard (just yesterday, I couldn't get an indoor court so, on her OWN, she did 1 hr. of shadow strokes and footwork in our basement. . .

    I so wish she could be in a better tennis environment but that's easier said than done. We have a son and jobs, family, etc. and hell no I'm not just moving for tennis alone and hope to figure it out.

    I'm taking the LOVE she has for tennis, the LOVE for school (she is straight A's/Dean's List student), and the LOVE to be a regular kid, and continuing to slowly build on "all" those aspect and let the chips fall where they may. In tennis, she is a grinder (not power player), incredibly consistent, fundamentally sound, mentally tough and very athletic. I'll take those traits to build on any day. She started tennis late and will peak late, and I'm cool with that.

    Hang in there . . . we can all encourage and support each other. It's hard but all that means, is continue pushing, trial and error, listening, probing and adjusting. No one has the blue print and no one has all the answers . . . I meet way to many "so called experts" who haven't done much better than any of us and that includes the academies :)
     
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  6. JLyon

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    I welcomed the tennis break after school, was a good way to relieve the stress of the school day, school 8-3, HS practice 3:15-5:00, then go to job for few hrs then go home and do homework.
    I always saw the tennis as a stress reliever from taking 3-4 AP courses each year
     
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  7. TCF

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  8. Soianka

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    Yes, absolutely!!!
     
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  9. Soianka

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    ..........
     
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  10. Soianka

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    ..........

    duplicate post
     
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  11. Pro_Tour_630

    Pro_Tour_630 Legend

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    if it were a big academy then maybe, but this academy is small 6-7 tops players. it was designed to be small, it is a very tight nit group. I would do the dishes, sweep the floors and string for everyone just to be part of that group I am sure GA would do the same. It is an elite group and the person running it is elite. They are doing things far and above anyone and everything that I have seen. The two i saw are by far the best 10 year old girls I have ever seen, and I have been around. The can kick my ten year old sons butt 0 and 0. Because it is small, the bills have to be paid and everyone has to commit their share.
    I teach in our club and my kids can do all the clinics and all the court time for free. I try to form groups but it seems every top level player are doing things on their own. We have four top 10 sectional players that live within a mile of each other, yet all four travel almost an hour in separate direction to work with what they think as the holly grail of development. It is a shame and really sad, it is mainly the parents faults. It is cultural as well. In france, argentina for example these kids would be playing together and all four would be champions.
     
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  12. TCF

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  13. treeman10

    treeman10 Semi-Pro

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    And what does this academy cost annually, ballpark? Does it include boarding? I suppose it's a "if ya have to ask ya can't afford it" kind of place, but I'm curious.

    One problem with the discount system in a small environment is the other kids/parents learn very quickly they are likely funding this other player. It's not that the coach takes less, generally they make up for it from other players. And with such a small bunch with what I assume is a very high price tag, playing favorites with anyone can eat through a program and cause a lot of issues. Different with more kids where you can spread it around and keep it buried easier.

    We learned over the years that tennis is a very "deal with it" kind of sport. Whether it is how things are priced, how players are selected for events, to having to get from one continent to another in just a few hours if you want that ITF tourny spot. Just have to deal with it. Tennis ain't for sissies (and tougher for fiscally challenged) that's for sure.
     
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  14. anhuynh16

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    I practice from 3:00 to 7:00 everyday and I'm in 8th grade... ,not sure why you cant fit in tennis?
     
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  15. BirdieLane

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    GA, To a certain extent, with a lot of hard work and dedication, most players will 'get there' eventually. Just not on the same timetable. ('There' being their ultimate level or tennis ceiling.) The most important thing is that the players passion for the game is driving them to excel by working hard and staying mentally fresh.

    Lets clone a junior player and consider a few training cases for those clones age 9 thru 13:

    Train 6 days a week:

    Clone A: 4 hrs of tennis everyday
    Clone B: 2 hrs of tennis, two hours of soccer
    Clone C: 2 hrs of tennis, one hour of fitness, one hour of tennis channel

    Predictions? I think it's extremely hard to say. If you make an assumption that a player will peak after x hours (i.e. 10,000 hr rule) you could argue each clone will reach peak at some point and be relatively 'even', it's just that Clone A will get there first. But is that the goal?

    Clone A will definitely have more success in 12s and 14s but there will be a question of burnout/freshness and also injuries and overuse. But Sharapova and Vika make a good case for this route.

    Clone B will take longer, but perhaps an increased athletic ceiling, along with increased mental freshness and more resistence to injury could ultimately result in a better player. This player would be a lot fresher mentally at age 17 and 18 than Clone B who had been grinding 4 hrs a day since age 9. Note that Federer had to chose between soccer and tennis at age 12 I think. He would be best argument for this Clone.

    Clone C is a slight spin on B. Not a ton of time on the court but also very focused and immersed in tennis. This player would be more mentally fresh than Clone A and possibly have a higher tennis IQ than Clone B because of obsession with not only playing, but also watching the game. I see this in many sports where kids that really watch and devour the game have significantly higher sport specific IQ than those that just play it. Hingis might be best example of this model.

    At the end of the day, if the passion is there and the improvement is constant, you are doing it right. But also please remember...the joy is truly in the journey...not the destination.
     
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  16. ga tennis

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    GREAT POST!!!!!
     
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  17. TCF

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  18. maggmaster

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    Isn't this why most experts recommend an escalating practice schedule through childhood into the teenage years? Something like 8 hours per week at 8 moving slowly up to 15 or 20 hours per week at 16-18?
     
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  19. NLBwell

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    There are two issues here:
    One is the miserable state of our education system, where assigning massive amounts of homework is done instead of actually teaching the kids. There is actually a negative correlation between high levels of homework in elementary and middle school and student achievement at the end of high school.
    The second is the amount of tennis that needs to be played to be a top player at about 18 years old, and the desire to play that much. When I think how much basketball the NBA players played to get to that level, I would say very few tennis players have played that much tennis. I played basketball up to 5 hours every day for much of the year about 4 to 10pm - usually breaking for dinner - with other kids in my neighborhood. Of course, none of us could make even the high-school team because the kids from the other side of town were so much better (#1 ranked high school team in the nation, and the best of the players didn't go to school at all) - a couple of my friends did play in college. No one made us go out and play basketball that much, we did it because we loved playing and also because that was our society - go to the gym - play ball - hang out and relate to each other - even get in trouble together. If you can get a bunch of kids together who love tennis and are good at it, like a poster above is trying to do, it reinforces the love of the game and makes all the work more fun and self-directed (instead of parent-directed).
     
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  20. hhollines

    hhollines New User

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    Wow!!! Awesome post and I couldn't agree more. That's why there is no universal blue print. It must be individualized to your kid and based on what fuels the "love" for that kid and not based on what the parent imposes on the kid (My daughter would be a hybrid Clone B and C). My 12 yr. old daughter plays about 10 hrs. per week on average (but totally locked in and focused) . . . about 1 tournament every 4-6 weeks (a lot of practice matches). She is also a competitive Irish dancer. She has one of the lighter tennis schedules but her love continues to grow . . . I can't remember her not leaving the court smiling and happy.

    If I forced Clone A's schedule on her, it would kill the love and ultimately she would either quit or, like some parents, I would have to force her to do it and eventually she would burn out (this could also have negative consequences for her life outside of tennis and after tennis; you can do serious long term damage to a young kid by living through them).

    There's no secret sauce . . .the biggest mistake is parents forcing or imposing schedules on their kids . . .
     
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  21. TCF

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  22. TCF

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  23. hhollines

    hhollines New User

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    Thanks TCF. Of course, by no means do I have the answers but this is the saddest sport I've ever been involved with . . . if she didn't love this morbid sport, I'd sell her rackets tomorrow . . .

    I may end up dead wrong but my wife and I decided to build her tennis program around her smile and love with the overall goal of developing her game (physically, mentally and technically) . . . that's it . . . for us, once we started doing that, we ended up doing crazy things that have nothing to do with points and rankings . . . it has been sobering b/c once we mentally separated and quit complaining about the overall U.S. junior tennis structure and just focused on what's best for her, the answers started to become pretty clear (for her) . . .

    but, it's hard not getting sucked back in hence why I stay completely away from basically all tennis parents . . . almost all my daughters friends have nothing to do with tennis (and it has been so healthy).
     
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  24. TCF

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  25. BirdieLane

    BirdieLane New User

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    No way you are dead wrong if you are growing her passion while striving to give her such a stimulating and healthy environment and she's loving it and making continuous improvement. Great job and great perspective. (And I also agree in many ways with your 'saddest' sport impression.)

    FYI, we are very similar to you, just a few years down the road. We live in snow state (indoor and no talent depth), just getting into 16s.

    My kid is a Clone B path and while she splits her time with another sport, the result is a very fresh and hungry mind. No injuries. And athleticism that is a feature of her game.

    So yes, you can definitely find your own path and compete at the very top without being in FL or going to an Academy at age 12.
     
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  26. hhollines

    hhollines New User

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    Thanks so much. These are the stories that keep us going. It's so easy to doubt yourself when 99% of the folks are doing the same thing and you see how destructive it can be and/or you know it's not the right path for your family (+ so many people telling you they have the secret sauce).

    So then you search to do it another way and to hear from folks like yourself that are a bit further down the road but can share that healthy perspective is so encouraging.

    I also believe you can develop a player in a cold weather state and you don't have to ship your kid to an academy but I'm finding it takes incredible courage to break away from the norm . . . you are often the loner but I'm getting comfortable with that. It took us 1 yr. to finally have the courage to forget about points and rankings and make decisions for the right reasons.

    I've been shocked at how often making the "right" decision for your child's development is in direct conflict with how the junior tennis system (rules and structure) is setup.
     
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  27. TCF

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  28. Bash and Crash

    Bash and Crash Semi-Pro

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    One word TCF, "yes". I have parents who wouldn't even let sons play practice matches because their future star may "lose", or they stand on the court and criticize or distract other kid so that their precious Johnny does well. Never ending, enjoy the journey!!
     
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  29. TCF

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  30. BirdieLane

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    I think it gets better as you get into 16s and 18s and the parents don't control everything anymore. (the players are texting and facebooking etc dispite the parents pettiness...) But I think girls are worse than boys. ATP vs WTA is same story.

    Just keep doing what you are doing TCF... Play a few tourneys to make friends and find hitting partners and stay out of the cattiness. Encourage your girl to hit anytime anywhere with anyone.

    Another tip is that when she is having a hit with another girl, try to watch as little as possible. Run errands or go have a hit yourself. Point is, let them enjoy each other and develop a friendship...rather than know they are under the microscope (your eye) and will have to answer for the tennis result. It is almost unbelievable how differently the kids interact if you stay and watch vs leave.

    They might goof around a little more than you want, but the enjoyment and friendship forged is more than worth a little wasted time and goofing around.

    One oasis for the kids is Intersectionals (16s). Only the top 3 or 4 from each section can go so it's pretty high level...BUT...ZERO parents for 5 days...just the kids hanging and playing all day. Several times when my daughter returned I've heard: "_____ is actually really nice!" (And I'm thrilled that the new USTA plan has 14s Inters...I hope it's same model...no parents and billeting together)
     
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  31. TCF

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  32. Soianka

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    Some of these tennis parents are crazy. I don't miss junior tennis at all.
     
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  33. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Some just gotta decide!
    Tennis or grades?
    If she's a prodigy in tennis, go for tennis.
    Probably she isn't, but is it YOUR choice or hers?
    Whatever you choose, it will come back to haunt you.
     
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  34. hhollines

    hhollines New User

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    TCF, for what it's worth, I never attend my daughter's group sessions, only watch the last 5-10 minutes of her practice matches and often leave her during tournament play (even nationals) for 20-25 minutes at a time (at the amazement of other parents). The end result is amazing.

    At Nat'ls in Tucson, another coach came up to me and said, "you have one of the only kids who do NOT need their parents; she hasn't looked over one time at you." He said that would turn into something very powerful down the road and we should be proud. I told my daughter from day one, "don't look at me during a match b/c I can't help you so help yourself and think about what's going on, what your opponent is doing, if you need to change, and if so, what to change to." While I think technique is important, it's when I see her thinking on the court that I'm most proud (whether or not it results in a win or loss . . . that's only a by-product and not important . . . it's the process and prep that's important). The kids need space to grow.

    Just imagine if our kids are mentally strong enough to handle him/herself, the opponent and, if need be, block out the opponents crazy parents . . . we rehearse how to get a line judge or ask for the tournament director without me or mom around . . . this is about her!!! Now that's mental strength that will be invaluable down the road . . . that's an independent player that will turn into an independent thinker on the court.

    Every time I see the crazy parents, I want to say, "hey, thanks, you are actually helping with my daughter's long term development." My job is to make sure the environment is safe . . . now if someone ever put their hands son my daughter, well that's a different issue :) . . .
     
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  35. TCF

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  36. chalkflewup

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    "Some" implies a few. Just sayin' ;)
     
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  37. Bash and Crash

    Bash and Crash Semi-Pro

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    TCF, at my old club I used to see one a top 12yr girl old melt down on a daily basis in clinic match play, always looking to see if dad was watching, it was like clockwork. Very, very talented hard worker, but would just lose it when she fell behind "lesser" player. Agree with Hollie, that parents should drop them off and show back up about 10-15 min before end of clinics, the kids need to learn they are on their own, and parents complimenting every shot hit, or the opposite is not the way to help them build character.
     
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  38. TCF

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  39. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Can't have you cake and eat it too.
    If you want grades, just study.
    If you want a world class athelete, who cares about grades?
    You can't have a tennis player AND a ballet dancer in the same person either.
    Nor can you have a piano player, a good student, AND an athlete.
    Do one or the other. You cannot have the world.
     
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  40. TCF

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  41. Pro_Tour_630

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    well said, the problem is that where do you get a group of kids that love the game to stay together without helicopter parents being involved. I tried it and failed, not only did I fail but almost every group/parent/coach in our area has failed. When parents think what is in the best interest of the group rather than what is best interest of their kid is when they will have success. The group has to be on the same page when it comes to development. There are going to be times when the best kid in the group would feel like they are the strongest player and want to leave. They shouldn't because the weaker kids will eventually get better and challenge the strongest kid. But almost always the parents and their egos would pull the kid out of the group when they see their Jr as the strongest player,
     
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  42. Pro_Tour_630

    Pro_Tour_630 Legend

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    Going back to the OP, GA wants to join this group of 5-6 girls on a regular basis. One of the top girls already left, again because of parents that pulled her and/or she was not on the same page in terms of tennis development as the rest. There is this other girl who is in the group that is the least experienced, I am amazed that the other top two girls would even want to be seen on the same court with her. She just started 6 months ago. But that is not the case, they are all disciplined and are on the same path to success, they have each other and that is what is important, not who is a little better at a given time.
     
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  43. TCF

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  44. ga tennis

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    I have come to the realiztion that i cannot afford to be there full time. I am fine with it now. I know a pretty good bit about developing a kid and im learning from her coach daily. I talk to him on the phone daily.I will continue to go every chance i get. One thing i LOVE is that he goes to all the tournaments that we go to and he watches her play and gives her feedback constantly!! He is a GREAT guy that truely cares about my daughter and i see it. I just HATE that she doesnt get to be in that environment daily because it truely is something special that they have.
     
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  45. TCF

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  46. ga tennis

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    Im just sooooooo happy now that i truely know that she is doing this for herself. We had a long talk and she told me daddy i use to play to make you and mommy happy but now i realize i do really love tennis. Since we got back from the tournament she has been tennis crazy. I got home from work yesterday and saw her across the street practicing her serve. I almost had a heart attack. I went in her room last night and she was watching the Australian Open. Its been a GOOD week!!!!!!
     
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  47. TCF

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  48. ga tennis

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    FINALLY!!! Last night at practice it was a different girl out there. She already hits the forehand bigger than ANY 11 year old i have seen now if she starts wanting it..Its about to get UGLY!!!!!!!
     
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  49. TCF

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  50. ga tennis

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    Getting there. This past weekend she almost defaulted before the tournament started because of her hip. She played but could not move at all. The reason her hip is hurt is because she is bringing her right foot to far up on her serve and is putting to much stress on the hip. She has somewhat fixed it and the pain is going away. It makes me wish i would have kept her serving a platform serve.
     

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