Life lesson learned from junior tennis

Discussion in 'Junior League & Tournament Talk' started by 10ismom, Apr 26, 2012.

  1. 10ismom

    10ismom Semi-Pro

    Feb 23, 2011
    I thought I would share this story. Hope to hear your story/perspective on how junior tennis teach kids a life lesson.

    My 12 yo middle schooler came home the other day appeared distraught.
    She told me what happened at the cafeteria. Apparently, there was a chain reaction of squashy mango being thrown from one kid's tray to another.......It ended when a custodian seeing it landed on a lunch table.
    He went to tell the teacher who rushed to the scene,..... furiously asking them who were involved in this crime?
    My daughter said she was the only one admitted while everyone else "sat quietly or looked the other way". She was reprimanded for the deed that might have started a food fight. The teacher said she would check a surveillance camera to see who else involved and urged them to come forward. No one else admitted.
    My daughter told me she did not understand why her friends would not state the fact. It was only her......I told her that's because "you're the only one playing tennis. Everyone else plays other sports."

    She looked surprised for a few seconds....then seemed to understand.

    The next morning she told me she sent an email to apologize her teacher for the act (without my suggestion). Her teacher replied, admired her character and maturity..and gave her a talk about making a wise decision despite peer pressure.
    Honesty comes easily to my daughter.
    In tennis, she would never cheat lines and would immediately reverse the out call if realized the ball was in. Any dispute and if the referee was called, she never lied.

    In junior tennis, we parents are worried about cheating and kids have to call lines themselves.
    In fact, that really can teach them life lesson about honesty and maturity to handle dispute and difficult situation themselves.

    What other life lesson your child learned from junior tennis?
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2012
  2. doubleshack

    doubleshack New User

    Dec 15, 2009
    Wow, your daughter is awesome. I don't think it is tennis related, I just think she is a good person.
  3. SoCal10s

    SoCal10s Hall of Fame

    May 5, 2008
    don't forget golf....
  4. Bash and Crash

    Bash and Crash Semi-Pro

    May 8, 2008
    I think it is good parenting also, as well as good sports etiquette. There are plenty of junior players that would cheat and do anything to win so it may not be just the sport. Congrats on raising such a thoughtful kid, you have already won.
  5. Clay lover

    Clay lover Hall of Fame

    Nov 11, 2007
    Such a moving story.
  6. 10ismom

    10ismom Semi-Pro

    Feb 23, 2011
    Thanks for the kind words. I do believe years of junior tennis help her to automatically tell the truth and admit fault without hesitation.

    I heard a lot about "tennis teaches life lessons to a child".
    Would be interesting to hear how others think about tennis helping a child with life skills.
  7. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

    Oct 1, 2005
    It is OK in school, but always speaking the truth is not a good practice later on. That is why there is the Miranda right, and the 5th amendment. By just speaking the truth, you could be opening yourself and your family to a lot of trouble. It may turn out that it was not really your fault, but by speaking the truth you have already implicated yourself instead of putting the burden on others to prove it. These days, with police and lawyers in school, I would not even speak the truth in school. It is a consequence of the litigious society. As an example, suppose you rear-end someone in a minor fashion in stop-and-go traffic. You just tell the truth that you had been texting and not paying attention. What happens? Now you are hit with an additional charge of distracted driving. You may say "I deserved it." But also now the other person knows about it and he and an unscrupulous doctor will use the information to falsely sue you or or auto company feigning big injuries since you have already admitted much.

    You should not lie, but I am not sure about speaking the truth.
  8. Misterbill

    Misterbill Semi-Pro

    Dec 18, 2011
    I am not sure tennis teaches more life skills than other sports or activities. Probably fewer, if team dynamics are taken into account.

    One of the many life skills that some continue to value is modesty. Not bragging or showing off about accomplishments or status. Again, I am not sure that tennis players are more modest than athletes in other sports, or the population in general.

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