My experience at Wilson Collegiate Tennis Camp in Wooster, Ohio
August 23, 2013
First of all I want to thank Mark Revermann of the Wilson Collegiate Camp, the USTA/ Midwest Section, South Side Junior Tennis Camp, and the sponsors who gave me the opportunity to attend the Wilson Collegiate Tennis Camp.
When my family and I arrived to Wooster College, I turned to my sister, Kinita, and said, “Now I get to experience college life just like you with the exception I’m playing the game/sport I love.” We all laughed! The Wooster College campus was beautiful with many trees and blue tennis courts that seemed to run forever. To me, the campus looked like a small town. The dorm rooms reminded me of my bedroom at home. I could see the blue tennis courts from the window. I received the essentials-dorm room keys, Wilson T-shirt and Wilson water bottle- at check-in. One of the many coaches explained to all of us that we were responsible for keeping up with our keycard because it allowed access to our dorm and cafeteria. I, unfortunately, lost mine the last day of camp, only to find it in my tennis bag a week after returning home. What a great souvenir!!
The Wilson Tennis Collegiate Camp was very organized. Our days started at 7:15 am with a knock at the door. I recognized the knock and was ready for the tennis day to begin. I had a brief walk down the street for breakfast and then headed right to the courts by 8:30-8:45 am. Did I mention the food was great? Every morning session started with drills and coaches’ explanation of the skills we would focus on for the day. The drills focused on serves, backhands, forehand, volleys and ways to hold your racquet. After lunch we were paired up in teams of the same skill level and practice rallying. It was exciting for me because the coaches filmed all of us. Later that same day, I had scheduled “watch time” with the coach. I sat with the coach and listened as they explained the areas of needed improvement. At the end of the tennis camp, I received a printout explaining the areas of needed improvement along with feedback on the areas in which I excelled. It was very insightful and helpful.
During “Fun Time” each day, the coaches had great activities planned for us. We had game night, a talent show, played pool and bowling. I really had a great time. Oh!! Did I tell you the food was delicious?
At first I was nervous being away from my family for a whole week, but we were so busy! My time was packed with activities. My mom was curious because she hadn’t heard from me. I hadn’t called so my mom had to call me! I really enjoyed the camp as I learned a lot about myself and improving my tennis skills – serving, volleying and racquets position. Wilson Collegiate Tennis Camp also introduced me to kids from all over the US, including a great new friend that I talk to at least once a week. The coaches were awesome because they knew all our names even when we daily changed group. The coaches really made me feel like part of a team. It was great! The Wilson Collegiate Tennis Camp made a difference for me because of what the tennis feedback and printout provided. My mom shared the tennis feedback to my coach here which helps me to focus on improving my tennis game. It was great that my coach could see a change in my technique since our last session. It would be great to return next year and compare the film to see the improvement in my game.
CICS Prairie, 7th grade
Our South Side Junior Tennis Camp Story
Our family decided to become involved in the South Side Junior Tennis Camp when our8 year old daughter Holly came home with the notice from school. She was pretty excited about the camp because we have the Wii Sports game which includes tennis. Dad and Holly play it often, so she was looking forward to playing tennis on an actual court. Holly really likes tennis because she gets to hit the ball really hard and gets to run.
Holly has been involved in several activities such as ballet, tap, violin, and track. However, we noticed that Holly was more attracted to activities that used a ball such as kick ball, soccer, bowling and dodge ball. Other team sports are competitive but, what makes tennis special to Holly is that she focused and competed to work harder and master her own skills. She kept saying “I gotta get my serve better.”
We liked the Junior Tennis Camp initiated with selected free sessions with the option of continuing with additional affordably priced sessions. The camp was located in Hyde Park where we were able to travel and park. I thought parking in Hyde Park would be a problem but it wasn’t. We also liked that the sessions were on Saturday mornings. The sessions were at a reasonable time and it worked for our family. Both dad and I were easily ble to transport her to the sessions.
We began to watch tennis on TV and learn more about the rules. We were amazed at the skills the players demonstrated. Dad has been a weekly racquetball player for years and I purchased a tennis racket during the summer. After the sessions ended, we began to play tennis in our backyard with a rope on the ground as our tennis net. I’m still not a tennis player but Holly is getting better. We will continue to support her interest in tennis.
I encourage parents to observe their children to find an activity that builds their self esteem and develop their individual skills. During Holly’s involvement in SSJTC, we watched our daughter develop confidence and it can be seen in how she engages academics and friendships.
Duane & Janise Alston
My daughters Nia and Kimora were able to enjoy a few of your tennis sessions the past couple of weeks. Unfortunately we couldn’t join you guys for the last session which sounded very fun and exciting. I did sign up for the fall session if you guys offer. I would like to thank your team so much for such a wonderful and memorable experience we all enjoyed. I am very thankful that you guys offer this program for the inner city kids. Thank you once again and enjoy the rest of your summer.
The following two testimonials are from our representatives to the USTA/Midwest Diversity Junior Excellence Camp held in September 2012 at Notre Dame.
I would like to say thank you for the great opportunity to represent SSJTC. It was great to see my friends from SSJTC. The Jr. Excellence Camp was very helpful for me. Working with the coaches at Notre Dame pointed out my strengths and weaknesses, showed me how improve my backhand, and most of all, encouraged me to have fun while playing tennis. I made new friends and saw friend I hadn’t seen in a while. It was a great experience for me. I hope to return next year to show the coaches how I’ve improved from their suggestions. I think anyone who enjoys playing tennis like I do should go to the Junior Excellence Camp they give great advice and you will have so much fun while improving how you play tennis.
When we went to Notre Dame, we played a lot of tennis. It was super fun and exciting. We learned new drills, games, and exercised to practice. I got to see college students play. The students were amazingly good at playing. It was a true learning experience. I hope I can do it again next year.
My kids had an absolute ball. Also encouraging was their embrace of the structure & discipline.
New SSJTC Parent