What could the USTA do to increase participation...

Moveforwardalways

Hall of Fame
For leagues, I think they could do exactly what they just did to southern. Bump everyone up and create easier levels of play at the lower levels, which will reduce barriers to entry. Maybe even expand NTRP up to 8.0 at the high end and have more levels of play. 3.0 is functionally the low end of league play and for someone just starting that is a pretty intimidating level.

For tournaments, I am not sure it is possible. It appears that adults simply do not like having to commit to a potential weekend of back to back matches the entire weekend. Maybe if they spread tournaments out over a few weeks, but that would exclude a lot of people and essentially become a league by default.
 

schmke

Hall of Fame
For leagues, I think they could do exactly what they just did to southern. Bump everyone up and create easier levels of play at the lower levels, which will reduce barriers to entry. Maybe even expand NTRP up to 8.0 at the high end and have more levels of play. 3.0 is functionally the low end of league play and for someone just starting that is a pretty intimidating level.

For tournaments, I am not sure it is possible. It appears that adults simply do not like having to commit to a potential weekend of back to back matches the entire weekend. Maybe if they spread tournaments out over a few weeks, but that would exclude a lot of people and essentially become a league by default.
Is it the time commitment of a full weekend? Or do more people just prefer being part of a team vs the individual nature of tournaments?

I think some avoid tournaments because they are afraid they'll lose first round and only get one match, and with tournament fees often being as much or more than league fees (where one might get anywhere from 2-8 matches) they don't see the value.

And there are two types of tournaments, well, really three. Level based (NTRP), Age divisions, and open. The average rec player probably won't play age division tournaments because they figure they'll lose first round (see above) if they aren't very good for their age. So NTRP tournaments are for them, but in some areas these have large numbers of players playing up and so the matches can be perceived as not worthwhile, or because tournament players don't get dynamic ratings/strikes it may be thought that there will be self-rated players that underrated that win so it isn't worthwhile.
 

Moveforwardalways

Hall of Fame
Is it the time commitment of a full weekend? Or do more people just prefer being part of a team vs the individual nature of tournaments?

I think some avoid tournaments because they are afraid they'll lose first round and only get one match, and with tournament fees often being as much or more than league fees (where one might get anywhere from 2-8 matches) they don't see the value.

And there are two types of tournaments, well, really three. Level based (NTRP), Age divisions, and open. The average rec player probably won't play age division tournaments because they figure they'll lose first round (see above) if they aren't very good for their age. So NTRP tournaments are for them, but in some areas these have large numbers of players playing up and so the matches can be perceived as not worthwhile, or because tournament players don't get dynamic ratings/strikes it may be thought that there will be self-rated players that underrated that win so it isn't worthwhile.
Maybe tournaments should have tiered fees then. Like a set fee where you pay $X per round and don't pay if you don't advance.
 

ChaelAZ

Legend
Bring back the club ladder--club champion gets the #1 parking space and a case of Costco Penns.

I loved our club ladder, but current admin killed it off. That said, I had talk to a few USTA folks over the years for making a singles Flex league ladder instead of the comical use of ratings as it is. To me it could be:
  • Based on actual ratings and count toward ratings
  • Players challenge and play next up, with the winner moving up one and the loser moving down one.
  • Players can challenge two up with the winner moving two up and the loser moving two back.
  • Some other kinda of special challenge, like maybe 2 per season where anyone can play anyone and there would be some rules for winner/loser movement, but haven't figured that out. This is a way to encourage more variety in play.

Something like that would be cool.
Or just make Flex a REAL singles league, with true ratings and counting in ratings.
 

trey.luby

New User
In order to increase participation, I really think there has to be a paradigm shift within the USTA regarding transparency in ratings and calculations. If you think about it, it's really a little outrageous that we all willingly play under a system that is mostly clouded in secrecy that no one will really tell you the details of and as a result, I think some of the decrease in participation is really the result of the lack of confidence people have in the system from not understanding it. Plus, it's hard to hold anyone accountable when they operate a system they won't tell you about.

For tournaments, what I have began using for my own events is transitioning from weekend-long events to one-day tournaments. I still do one large weekend event once a year (actually its Thur-Sun) where I have 400-500 people but during the rest of the year, it's now going to be one-day events. I am also about to try another alternative where a tournament is actually played over the course of three weeks where you play your matches during the week once a week.
 

Ft.S

Semi-Pro
Is it the time commitment of a full weekend? Or do more people just prefer being part of a team vs the individual nature of tournaments?

I think some avoid tournaments because they are afraid they'll lose first round and only get one match, and with tournament fees often being as much or more than league fees (where one might get anywhere from 2-8 matches) they don't see the value.
Although I really like playing in leagues, the excitement of tournaments for me is about the elimination format, it feels like a really tough test to take. However, it is absolutely about the time and physical commitment for me. Working all week, if I commit to playing tournaments during the weekends, I just cannot plan for anything else family and home related. That is a deal breaker for me. If tournaments were held week-long, for example, and I got to play each round over the course of a week, than I'd participate in tournaments five times more frequently. Right now, I only do 2 or 3 a year :(

I like playing singles in tournaments, I get enough doubles in leagues. Having to play two or three singles matches a day takes heavy toll on my 50+ year old body.
 

Wes19

New User
I started playing tennis a few years back. As someone who has never played any USTA tennis, every time I go on the website to consider registering, it just doesn’t seem worth it.

Locally I have a really active GTN ladder, which I think is $10 a year. I’ve been able to get close to 100 matches played there this year. They also do seasonal tournaments at multiple levels which are $4 each. Tournaments are spread out over a few weeks time, so no full weekend commitment.

Also in my area there is Tennis League Network, which is about $20-$25 a season, on which I’ve been able to get another 30+ league matches.

While in terms of USTA you have to pay yearly just to register, work to find a league/team, and subsequently pay for that as well, all for what sounds like it could be a relatively small number of matches.

No offense meant by this post in anyway, as again I’ve only been playing for a few years...but is there something that I’m missing?
 

trey.luby

New User
I started playing tennis a few years back. As someone who has never played any USTA tennis, every time I go on the website to consider registering, it just doesn’t seem worth it.

Locally I have a really active GTN ladder, which I think is $10 a year. I’ve been able to get close to 100 matches played there this year. They also do seasonal tournaments at multiple levels which are $4 each. Tournaments are spread out over a few weeks time, so no full weekend commitment.

Also in my area there is Tennis League Network, which is about $20-$25 a season, on which I’ve been able to get another 30+ league matches.

While in terms of USTA you have to pay yearly just to register, work to find a league/team, and subsequently pay for that as well, all for what sounds like it could be a relatively small number of matches.

No offense meant by this post in anyway, as again I’ve only been playing for a few years...but is there something that I’m missing?
Fees are certainly an issue with USTA....you have to join the USTA for the year to play, then pay more to register for a league, then pay more fees if you go to State, then more fees if you go past there, etc.
 

schmke

Hall of Fame
I started playing tennis a few years back. As someone who has never played any USTA tennis, every time I go on the website to consider registering, it just doesn’t seem worth it.

Locally I have a really active GTN ladder, which I think is $10 a year. I’ve been able to get close to 100 matches played there this year. They also do seasonal tournaments at multiple levels which are $4 each. Tournaments are spread out over a few weeks time, so no full weekend commitment.

Also in my area there is Tennis League Network, which is about $20-$25 a season, on which I’ve been able to get another 30+ league matches.

While in terms of USTA you have to pay yearly just to register, work to find a league/team, and subsequently pay for that as well, all for what sounds like it could be a relatively small number of matches.

No offense meant by this post in anyway, as again I’ve only been playing for a few years...but is there something that I’m missing?
What area of the country are you in?

Some areas have a strong/vibrant USTA League and in those, while there are still some of the negatives you hear about here, they are the exception and not the rule and players get a fun, competitive, and rewarding experiences 90+% of the time. Players like being part of a team, getting to play competitive matches against others outside their normal circle of players, and having goals to shoot for be that making local playoffs, sectionals, or even nationals.

Not all areas are like that though, either because other leagues or playing opportunity exist the USTA must compete with or discontent from players due to some of the negatives.
 

loosegroove

Hall of Fame
Fees are certainly an issue with USTA....you have to join the USTA for the year to play, then pay more to register for a league, then pay more fees if you go to State, then more fees if you go past there, etc.
It's stupidly cost prohibitive in the North East, and really not efficient use of time. I once drove half an hour to a match, payed $35 for match/court fees, and then was off the courts in under an hour after a quick blowout. So I payed $35 for an hour of crap tennis, and spent more time traveling than I did playing. That's a tough sell to a lot of players, who would rather spend that money at the local club on guaranteed quality matches and a longer duration of playing.
 
Is it the time commitment of a full weekend? Or do more people just prefer being part of a team vs the individual nature of tournaments?

I think some avoid tournaments because they are afraid they'll lose first round and only get one match, and with tournament fees often being as much or more than league fees (where one might get anywhere from 2-8 matches) they don't see the value.

And there are two types of tournaments, well, really three. Level based (NTRP), Age divisions, and open. The average rec player probably won't play age division tournaments because they figure they'll lose first round (see above) if they aren't very good for their age. So NTRP tournaments are for them, but in some areas these have large numbers of players playing up and so the matches can be perceived as not worthwhile, or because tournament players don't get dynamic ratings/strikes it may be thought that there will be self-rated players that underrated that win so it isn't worthwhile.
Now that I'm bumped, this is where I'm at. The major zones don't offer consolation in doubles, so I could be paying $75+ for two matches if I lose in the first round in both draws. I'll probably still play local stuff, but I certainly won't be traveling around the state next year like I did this year.
 

TennisOTM

New User
In my area in Intermountain, USTA leagues seem quite popular among the 40+ crowd, but they are suffering from very low participation among young adults. This year the 18+ league was basically another season of 40+. I played 13 matches in the 18+ league including wildcard & district playoffs, against 19 different guys across singles and doubles, and exactly one of those 19 was under 40.

I don't know why younger adults are not playing, but it doesn't seem like it's necessarily a USTA problem. I'm also playing World Team Tennis and it's the same thing there - we have one random 23-year-old on our team and all our opponents do a double-take when they see him, thinking he's a teenager because he looks so much younger than everyone. They're practically pinching his cheeks.

Our local tennis coordinators have been trying to recruit younger adults with tennis socials / events targeted at them - we'll see if it works.
 

TennisOTM

New User
Although I really like playing in leagues, the excitement of tournaments for me is about the elimination format, it feels like a really tough test to take. However, it is absolutely about the time and physical commitment for me. Working all week, if I commit to playing tournaments during the weekends, I just cannot plan for anything else family and home related. That is a deal breaker for me. If tournaments were held week-long, for example, and I got to play each round over the course of a week, than I'd participate in tournaments five times more frequently. Right now, I only do 2 or 3 a year :(

I like playing singles in tournaments, I get enough doubles in leagues. Having to play two or three singles matches a day takes heavy toll on my 50+ year old body.
I second this - I played one tournament this year and that was enough. It was a blast and I was happy to win a few matches, but three straight 3-set matches (full third set), the last two on Friday night / Saturday morning and I could barely walk for two weeks and I'm not 50 yet. Not to mention I almost missed my daughter's birthday party. I could get divorced if I do that again.
 
In my area in Intermountain, USTA leagues seem quite popular among the 40+ crowd, but they are suffering from very low participation among young adults. This year the 18+ league was basically another season of 40+. I played 13 matches in the 18+ league including wildcard & district playoffs, against 19 different guys across singles and doubles, and exactly one of those 19 was under 40.

I don't know why younger adults are not playing, but it doesn't seem like it's necessarily a USTA problem. I'm also playing World Team Tennis and it's the same thing there - we have one random 23-year-old on our team and all our opponents do a double-take when they see him, thinking he's a teenager because he looks so much younger than everyone. They're practically pinching his cheeks.

Our local tennis coordinators have been trying to recruit younger adults with tennis socials / events targeted at them - we'll see if it works.
Haha I'm in Intermountain too and this is all true. I'm mid 30s and still get comments about being the "young guy" or "kid" on court for matches during league season. A few years ago my district ran a summer league specifically for ages 18-39 since play opportunities were so limited under 40. It was met with so much complaining and accusations of ageism (even though everyone over 40 has vastly more leagues to choose from) that the local USTA killed it after 1-2 seasons. Now the only things running that are trying to bring younger players in are socials and programs aimed at 2.5 - 3.5 players.
 

Wes19

New User
What area of the country are you in?

Some areas have a strong/vibrant USTA League and in those, while there are still some of the negatives you hear about here, they are the exception and not the rule and players get a fun, competitive, and rewarding experiences 90+% of the time. Players like being part of a team, getting to play competitive matches against others outside their normal circle of players, and having goals to shoot for be that making local playoffs, sectionals, or even nationals.

Not all areas are like that though, either because other leagues or playing opportunity exist the USTA must compete with or discontent from players due to some of the negatives.
I’m in Southern California. I’m definitely not against playing on a team, USTA or WTT it just seems like the barrier to entry is figuring out when seasons start and then finding a team. Is anyone allowed to start a team, or do you need to have played before?
 

CHtennis

Rookie
The biggest thing is the young people right. The 40 and over and the 55 and over leagues are growing. The USTA does a poor job of getting young college players to play after college. It is not just the USTA though, there is some resistance to any D1 players playing at times (why is he playing, he just finished playing at [insert college here], what a step down). I dont know how to get them involved but that is the target that is not playing right now.
 

Moveforwardalways

Hall of Fame
The most common story in adult rec tennis is... played as a kid and/or college. Did not play in 20's. Had kids in early 30's. Now is late 30's/early 40's, kids are a little older/lower maintenance, and wants to get back into it. How to keep them engaged the whole time? Hard to say. Ask the clubs in Europe how they do it.
 

OnTheLine

Hall of Fame
It is an interesting question .... make it more popular/increase participation for who? For me? Obviously not, I am already playing a lot and enjoying it.

More appealing to those who aren't playing? Well why aren't they playing?

Some of the things that are barriers:

A. Finding a team / league. Unless you are active at a tennis club it is a total mystery. I hit with some park players who never play league. When asked why not, often the response is that they have no idea where to even look for a team/league. The USTA website doesn't help. Good luck finding the local league office if you even knew to look for one. So perhaps the USTA could:
  1. Adverstise ... crazy but that is a thing that organizations do to get more participants.
  2. Make the website user friendly (or even usable) ... say click here to find a team and have it actually do something in real time to find a coordinator who actually does something and gets you on a team
B. The clique-i-ness of the tennis community ... I don't know how you fix this. But it is a turn-off. Could just be a human nature thing

C. Schedules .. I hear about some of y'all's schedules and I cringe. Different days of the week, start times for a match at 4pm or after 8pm on a weeknight .. yuck
  1. Standardize league nights/days. For X level they are always played on X day, For X League, always played on X day .... people lead busy lives but if something is standardized they can plan around it. (I am happy that all 18+ and 40+ are always on Saturdays and all mixed is on Sundays)
  2. Don't run two popular leagues concurrently. Figure it out people. Don't run 18+ at the same time as 40+ or 18-39. Not that hard.
D. Match format ..... Think about what is popular these days among younger athletes: Marathons, Spartan races, Tough Mudders, Triathalons, etc. .... Tests of fitness and endurance. But in USTA tennis we move to a low bar .... mostly doubles and then we even chop off the 3rd set and turn it into a 10 point tiebreaker.
  1. Appeal to those that value fitness/endurance while still considering the need for time slots at a facility
    1. No Ad scoring BUT with FULL 3rd set
  2. No one watches doubles on TV .... we want to emulate what we see on TV and feel like we are a bit a part of it
    1. Increase the number of singles lines in all leagues.
      1. 3S and 2D or 3S and 4D
    2. Or Just make an actual singles league .... same platform as current league, all the way districts/sectionals/nationals run it concurrently or consecutively
      1. 18+ singles, 5 lines of singles per team match ; 18+ doubles, 5 lines of doubles per team match
      2. 40+ singles, 3 lines of singles per team match; 40+ doubles, 5 lines of doubles per team match

So there are my random thoughts
 
For leagues, I think they could do exactly what they just did to southern. Bump everyone up and create easier levels of play at the lower levels, which will reduce barriers to entry. Maybe even expand NTRP up to 8.0 at the high end and have more levels of play. 3.0 is functionally the low end of league play and for someone just starting that is a pretty intimidating level.

For tournaments, I am not sure it is possible. It appears that adults simply do not like having to commit to a potential weekend of back to back matches the entire weekend. Maybe if they spread tournaments out over a few weeks, but that would exclude a lot of people and essentially become a league by default.
I'm an older adult that prefers tournaments. Too much drama and politics in leagues and its boring.
 
Personally, I would never sign up for a tournament that was spread over the course of several weeks. That removes a lot of what I like about tournaments.
 
In order to increase participation, I really think there has to be a paradigm shift within the USTA regarding transparency in ratings and calculations. If you think about it, it's really a little outrageous that we all willingly play under a system that is mostly clouded in secrecy that no one will really tell you the details of and as a result, I think some of the decrease in participation is really the result of the lack of confidence people have in the system from not understanding it. Plus, it's hard to hold anyone accountable when they operate a system they won't tell you about.

For tournaments, what I have began using for my own events is transitioning from weekend-long events to one-day tournaments. I still do one large weekend event once a year (actually its Thur-Sun) where I have 400-500 people but during the rest of the year, it's now going to be one-day events. I am also about to try another alternative where a tournament is actually played over the course of three weeks where you play your matches during the week once a week.
I always appreciate people who are willing to try something different. Kudos
 

Jim A

Professional
There is quite a bit of room for improvement with USTA but keeping it to leagues and tournaments I'd start with the following.

Leagues:
1. A national organization needs to have a national structure for league play. - We could probably have a very long thread with people's input and insight into what would be best. Having changed sections in 2019 it has been an eye opener for me. (Spoiler: I miss Intermountain)

2. More league play outside of league play. How hard would it be for USTA to throw together a couple of "Super Saturdays" and get teams to test out some new formats such as Fast 4 or lead into to a college match later that afternoon. Better yet, have them at a couple unique locations during the season such as Indian Wells, US Open Tennis Center, National Campus. No self-rates, raffles, etc. Provide a good experience for players and keep them engaged with the USTA. It'd be cool to play matches with Playsight calling the lines/challenge system. I have an event background maybe I'll just do a 3.5 bonanza here and invite people down in February? Who's in?

3. More impetus and discounts for league players. Have a couple blowout team/equipment deals during the year

4. Don't reduce opportunities for league play - I'm looking at you 40+ changes :unsure:

Tournaments:
1. Consistency or minimum offering to be able to be an USTA tournament - I don't need a lot however when I'm paying $40 to play, get one match on a poor court, with a light out, tournament director can't be bothered to show and the score is entered wrong - why would I return? If I'm playing in a USTA sanctioned event there should be a minimum set of expectations - player party, swag bag, even a "thanks for playing". What I don't need is a trophy of a classic 70's tennis guy. I'm nearly 50 that isn't going anywhere, my wife won't let it in the house. Toss me a gift certificate, leverage your sponsors for that stuff they will appreciate it more than a logo on the bottom of a t-shirt

2. Minimum draws - don't set me up for a best of 3 vs the same team when we are the only two who signed up. Let's make it at least 4 teams, in many regions there are fewer points for round robin vs match wins.

3. Have more tournaments like the invitationals above for NTRP levels - similar to Super Saturday for leagues - C rated players only - Have Indian Wells, Miami, Cincinnati & ?? and let the qualifiers meet later in the year somewhere for a final - Take 4-8 from each and play it out Sri-Sunday - everyone gets 1 match each day regardless - (R 16 on Friday - Quarters and Semi's on Sat and Final on Sunday with other matches just picked out of a hat

There's a million other things I'm sure but these are top of mind...

 

ctc2

New User
I started playing USTA league about three years ago after taking a 25 year rest from tennis. At least where I live, it is really not easy to join a team. If you are a member of a club you usually can bypass all of this, but there are just too many obstacles for some people.
After navigating the less than ideal computer rating questions and getting a rating which may or may not reflect your ability level, you then have to have either someone introduce you to a group where you can be pulled from, know a captain, or somehow stumble on the rather poor "find a team" form on the local tennis association website.
Then, if you are able to do that, you have to navigate a local political system of captains, and/or organizers of which you don't understand or know the pitfalls of. Then, you have to ingratiate yourself with the local team "gatekeepers" either by being really good for your NTRP rating or really good and viable to understate your rating with your abilities. If you can't do that, you have to find a captain who is either needing warm bodies or just does not care about anything other than drinking beer after the matches or is not really competitive.
If you do all that, then you have to pay money for membership, team fees, court fees all with no understanding of how much you will play.
I don't expect it is like this everywhere but it was my path. Whatever can be done to remove these types of obstacles would help. I am familiar with the system now so it is much easier to navigate and a lot more enjoyable.
 

OnTheLine

Hall of Fame
I started playing USTA league about three years ago after taking a 25 year rest from tennis. At least where I live, it is really not easy to join a team. If you are a member of a club you usually can bypass all of this, but there are just too many obstacles for some people.
After navigating the less than ideal computer rating questions and getting a rating which may or may not reflect your ability level, you then have to have either someone introduce you to a group where you can be pulled from, know a captain, or somehow stumble on the rather poor "find a team" form on the local tennis association website.
Then, if you are able to do that, you have to navigate a local political system of captains, and/or organizers of which you don't understand or know the pitfalls of. Then, you have to ingratiate yourself with the local team "gatekeepers" either by being really good for your NTRP rating or really good and viable to understate your rating with your abilities. If you can't do that, you have to find a captain who is either needing warm bodies or just does not care about anything other than drinking beer after the matches or is not really competitive.
If you do all that, then you have to pay money for membership, team fees, court fees all with no understanding of how much you will play.
I don't expect it is like this everywhere but it was my path. Whatever can be done to remove these types of obstacles would help. I am familiar with the system now so it is much easier to navigate and a lot more enjoyable.
You just described my experience when I came back to tennis. Almost exactly. (also a 20+ year break, also came back 3 years ago)
 

Max G.

Legend
Yeah, I think the biggest barrier to getting into league tennis is the first season. The process of finding a rating, finding a team. If the USTA had some structure for that - maybe someone who runs not-too-competitive teams at different levels to help people get into the system - that could help a lot.
 

kevrol

Hall of Fame
A. Finding a team / league. Unless you are active at a tennis club it is a total mystery. I hit with some park players who never play league. When asked why not, often the response is that they have no idea where to even look for a team/league. The USTA website doesn't help. Good luck finding the local league office if you even knew to look for one. So perhaps the USTA could:
  1. Adverstise ... crazy but that is a thing that organizations do to get more participants.
  2. Make the website user friendly (or even usable) ... say click here to find a team and have it actually do something in real time to find a coordinator who actually does something and gets you on a team
To me this is the #1 thing. Most folks don't even know it exists. Even if you do finding a team to get on is incredibly challenging for a non-club player.
 

Moveforwardalways

Hall of Fame
To me this is the #1 thing. Most folks don't even know it exists. Even if you do finding a team to get on is incredibly challenging for a non-club player.
Sometimes it is even pretty challenging for a non-club player too. Clubs can be odd places.

Overall, I do agree that getting on your first team in an area is probably the biggest barrier to entry. Not sure how to get more people over this hump though. I think the answer is more likely to be a social fix than a tennis fix though.
 

TennisOTM

New User
I started playing league about a year ago and did not find it hard at all to get on a team, mostly because of our local "outreach coordinator" who is extremely helpful. She will find a captain who needs players to take you on their team, and if she can't then she'll create a new team that she herself captains via email, men or women. She'll fill her makeshift team with other new players, other players she somehow recruits, players she convinces to play up a level, etc. Her teams are never very good and she doesn't continue captaining the same group beyond the first season, but that's enough to get the new people into it and onto a team with a more permanent captain, or else some of the thrown-together teammates hit it off and decide to run their own team together.
 

kevrol

Hall of Fame
I started playing league about a year ago and did not find it hard at all to get on a team, mostly because of our local "outreach coordinator" who is extremely helpful. She will find a captain who needs players to take you on their team, and if she can't then she'll create a new team that she herself captains via email, men or women. She'll fill her makeshift team with other new players, other players she somehow recruits, players she convinces to play up a level, etc. Her teams are never very good and she doesn't continue captaining the same group beyond the first season, but that's enough to get the new people into it and onto a team with a more permanent captain, or else some of the thrown-together teammates hit it off and decide to run their own team together.
Sounds like your local area is lucky to have that outreach coordinator. The only outreach done here is sending out a few e-mails and posting on facebook occassionally. Certainly nothing like an outreach coordinator who is willing to captain teams themself.
 

Max G.

Legend
I started playing league about a year ago and did not find it hard at all to get on a team, mostly because of our local "outreach coordinator" who is extremely helpful. She will find a captain who needs players to take you on their team, and if she can't then she'll create a new team that she herself captains via email, men or women. She'll fill her makeshift team with other new players, other players she somehow recruits, players she convinces to play up a level, etc. Her teams are never very good and she doesn't continue captaining the same group beyond the first season, but that's enough to get the new people into it and onto a team with a more permanent captain, or else some of the thrown-together teammates hit it off and decide to run their own team together.
Yeah, that’s exactly the kind of thing I was thinking of. Our area has nobody that helpful.
 
Captains of 3-3.5 teams generally have no clue as to what tennis talent is--they'll hangout at the pick-up court scouting new on the scene recruits for their teams. The league team captain "usually" has very little knowledge of the sport of tennis and pick the best/fastest player to partner with. They are a necessary evil of the league system to be administer and marshall their troops to get them to the right place at the right time, supply the Costco Penns, put up the scorecards on the net posts and supply the veggie platter/kali dip and beer/wine coupon at the bar. If the team should make it to playoffs, they may hire the services of the a club pro to come along--who'll willingly oblige, and may set-up some warm-up time, give a few tips and come along for a free junket to a nice resort venue. I've never seen a 3-3.5 team captain who knew beans about tennis--at 4.0, maybe about baseball.

There was a 3.0 ladies team at a facility, who was offered the services of a Wimby champion as a team advisor gratis by management--the captain said : "No thank you, we don't need your help." :-D
 
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Ronaldo

Talk Tennis Guru
Captains of 3-3.5 team,s generally have no clue as to what tennis talent is about--they'll hangout at the pick-up court scouting new on the scene recruits for their teams. The league team captain "usually" has very little knowledge of the sport of tennis and pick the best player to partner with. They are a necessary evil of the league system to be administrators to marshall their troops to the right place at the right time, supply the Costco Penns, put up the scorecards on the net posts and supply the veggie plate and kali dip and beer/wine coupon at the bar. If the team should make it to playoffs, they may hire the services of the r club pro to come along--who'll willingly oblige, and may set-up some warm-up time, give a few tips and come along for a free junket to a nice resort venue. I've never seen a 3-3.5 team captain who knew beans about tennis--at 4.0, maybe about baseball.

There was a 3.0 ladies team at a facility, who was offered the services of a Wimby champion as a team advisor gratis by management--the captain said : "No thank you, we don't need your help." :-D
You Cannot Be Serious! Best captains send scouts to watch matches of their competitors. Then pilfer the best players from those teams. It is a year-long thank-less job.
 
We're just glad you allow us to use the same courts as you when you're not using them Mr. Federer.
You're welcome, my strokes look the same as RFed's, but the footwork's slowed down a bit. Take my court please, I'm off to Dubai where it's warm and to hit with some up and comings.
 
Best captains send scouts to watch matches of their competitors.
All this driving around to other courts is one of the biggest contributors's to gw (global warming)--play at your home courts. Meet your neighbor's and work on your game until you can beat everyone at home, maybe hit with a highschool kid or a five year old, he/she may be another Steffi or Andre and you can say I played them when. When you can do that, enter a tournament and play against the best from the other provinces. Save the planet--but watch out, the sky is falling!
 

Ronaldo

Talk Tennis Guru
All this driving around to other courts is one of the biggest contributors's to gw (global warming)--play at your home courts. Meet your neighbor's and work on your game until you can beat everyone at home, maybe hit with a highschool kid or a five year old, he/she may be another Steffi or Andre and you can say I played them when. When you can do that, enter a tournament and play against the best from the other provinces. Save the planet--but watch out, the sky is falling!
We ride bicycles
 
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