I am happy to announce that Tennis Warehouse has given me the opportunity to share with you my tennis journey. Many of you know me from several years of discussions on the message board, including meeting in person as well. Still, let me introduce myself with a bit of background information to begin the season.
I grew up in a small farm town in central Minnesota. I started playing tennis around age 9 and got serious about the game around 12. Though the conditions were tough for tennis where I am from, I was able to improve year by year and eventually develop into one of the top juniors in the section, winning the state high school singles tournament one year as well. I played college tennis in Santa Barbara, CA at an NAIA school as well as St. Cloud State, a NCAA Division II school in Minnesota. It was in college that I really made some progress with my game as I got better opportunities to improve. I’ve also become much stronger even after college by continuing to seek better competition in prize money Open events and Pro Circuit Futures tournaments. I’ve been able to win most of the regional opens, with several wins over full time touring players ranked up to the top 700, and many top college players.
After turning 29 a couple weeks ago, I still feel I am improving and have many goals to chase this year and for years to come. This last year has been a difficult one for me in many ways on and off the court with injuries and personal struggles. As a result, I am extremely motivated to make a run and see what I can do.
When I am not competing and training, I am also a tennis teaching professional at a LifeTime Fitness facility. With the summer now here, my teaching slows down and I have tournaments almost every week through August! It is a lot, but I enjoy the competition and the training, and I want every opportunity to earn some money and get some big wins. Since April, I have been able to win the USPTA National Indoor tournament as well as a high level charity mixed doubles event with a friend and student of mine, Alexis Nelson. She has consistently been ranked in the top 10 or better in the nation for 14’s, and usually plays up in national 16’s and 18’s. She is one to watch for in the future.
I’m in a little training block for a couple weeks as I try to get in a lot of hard workouts and hitting sessions, and I’m feeling it right now. I will have to find some time to rest soon after, as my first singles event of the summer will be a National Open in Virginia in mid-May, followed by a local tournament at my own club with some of the top men and Division 1 college players in the state always entering.
That is my story for now! I will update again next week after some more practice, or around tournament time. Thanks again to everyone for your support and encouragement; let’s make every chance count!