Seven local youth were served up a week of tennis lessons last week in the lakecity.
Hosted by the city’s Recreation Services department and coached by Tribune sports reporter Greg Sabatino at the Kiwanis Tennis Courts, it was the first time the sport had been offered to children in the area in the past five years.
Suzanne Cochrane, the city’s recreation programmer, said they’ve had difficulty finding someone to coach the sport, however, learned of Sabatino’s past competitive playing days in tennis and thought he might fit the bill.
Throughout the week, consisting of five, one-and-a-half-hour sessions, players learned all of the basics of the game, beginning at square one, moving from forehands, to backhands, to volleys, to serving and how to keep score in a match.
On the final day, players took what they’d learned throughout the week into a round robin tournament where they played off for prizes.
Sabatino said he had a lot of fun with participants, and added he hopes to be able to help offer lessons again next spring, or summer, depending on the city’s sport camp scheduling.
“The kids were all a blast to be around,” he said. “They were keen to learn, and I saw huge improvement by the end of the week, even in such a short amount of time they had to learn a new sport.”