My name is Jason Li and I played with KC Tennis when I was in sixth grade. I recently graduated from high school with a 4.7 GPA and have committed to the University of Florida for a degree in aerospace engineering. This is how tennis impacted my life.
Ever since my first private lesson, coach Kurt has always emphasized the importance of purpose. He never hesitated to explain why we did a drill or why the technique is the way that it is. He never scolded a mistake, but instead asked us what we could have done to improve our shots in the future. This rationality-driven approach to tennis taught me to think critically rather than emotionally. Instead of being upset about missing a shot, I asked myself purposeful questions on improving the next one. This method of thinking is directly applicable to the real world and has led me to make meaningful decisions towards my academic and personal goals.
Truth be told, I don't play tennis anymore, but it was never about tennis. For ordinary people, the purpose of playing sports is to teach values (and to exercise). Putting tennis on a resume is never going to help at a job interview, but how about putting "analytical," or "driven," or "dedicated." If nothing else, playing tennis will help you become a better person; it worked for me.
Letter from a past student
“Good afternoon coach, it’s my second week of classes and it’s been such a great experience. I’m very thankful to be able to meet new people and enrich my understanding of the world.
I’m taking a class called “The Young Adolescent” in the college of education and we’ve been learning about fixed and growth mindsets. Basically a fixed mindset is when an individual believes their abilities are out of their control whereas growth mindsets empower an individual to take control of their own life. Moreover, people with growth mindsets are more apt to take on difficult tasks to challenge themselves. Reflecting on the tennis clinics, I’ve realized that your teaching methods absolutely embody the positivity of a growth mindset. Your style of teaching promotes cognitive autonomy and self analysis with the kids and you constantly praise effort over ability.
I think it’s pretty cool that your method of teaching is backed by tons of research. I just thought I’d share.”