The United States Tennis Association (USTA), with executive headquarters in White Plains, works hard to grow the game in our county and across the nation.
With tennis season in full swing, we caught up with Julie Bliss Beal, USTA senior director of competition, for the lowdown on some of their winning initiatives and local success stories.
Tennis has a lot of competition these days. To get kids hooked on the game early, the USTA devised the Net Generation system, which makes tennis instantly more playable.
The color-coded progression starts beginners off with a smaller racquet and court, and an oversized red low-bouncing ball, enabling kids to rally right away. A faster orange ball and a larger court are next. By the time students graduate to real tennis, they know strategy, as well as technique.
Almost all tennis facilities in Westchester have adopted Net Generation methodology.
Sets in the City is a social league for players age 21 to 40. The league offers co-ed, mixed-level competition, shorter sets, and an emphasis on fun.
Men and women all over Westchester can channel their inner champions by joining local interclub teams. The USTA framework provides year-round play for hundreds of teams open to multiple age groups and abilities.
In fact, Westchester ranked second nationally in team registration growth last year. Most adult leagues are “advancing,” meaning they have playoffs.
Five Westchester teams made it to Nationals in 2018. (Fingers crossed for this season!)
The USTA recently partnered with Manhattanville College to offer a degree in professional tennis management. Internships and career opportunities abound in our area, for those who want to make a career out of their favorite sport.
For where to play, what to wear, and how to succeed on Westchester’s courts, click here.