Monday, December 17, 2007

Advancing Beginner

Today I had my fifth tennis lesson, and I am now officially (ok, honestly, it's pretty unofficial) an advanced beginner! That's what my teacher said! He said if he put me in group lessons, I'd be in the advanced beginners class. Not the beginner beginner class.

I have very little experience with any sport that takes skill. I don't "play" sports. I run, I lift, and I do yoga, so I consider myself athletic but I do NOT consider myself to have much coordination or athletic skill. And the last time I played any competitive sport was when I was an 8-year-old soccer enthusiast. I ran around the soccer field more than anyone- chasing the ball, and running away from it, but I rarely kicked it. Honestly, I was a little afraid of the ball hitting my face. So, I kept my distance, and I was the player that never scored. It didn't feel like "playing" to me, and it really wasn't much fun. My interest in soccer lasted less than a season.

But one day last month, as my sister and I watched my dad and his girlfriend play tennis, it just looked so fun. Dad's been taking tennis lessons and it seems to be working for him! His girlfriend has played most of her life, and from what I could tell, they seemed pretty evenly matched already.

That's when I started thinking about my lack of experience with any kind of sport that you get better at once you learn the skill to do it. Maybe tennis was something I could learn to play. Maybe if I learned the right technique, I wouldn't have to worry about the ball hitting my face.

So I mentioned to Dad how fun it all looked. The next thing I knew, I was signed up for my own private tennis lessons with Dad's instructor, John.

John, who is now my tennis instructor too, is the most encouraging guy around! He says things like, "Good job" and "Nice one" around a 100 times during my hour-long lesson. The other 100 times, he tells me, "That's ok, that's ok" or "Nice try!" It really cracks me up. But it also really encourages me and makes me think I'm good. And as a advanced beginner, that's just what I need!

1 comment:

Rrramone said...

Too bad you're not learning racquetball or I would be whupping your arse. ;-)

But good for you and the tennis!