$900,000 from USTA to grow youth tennis
WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. — The USTA today announced that 18 communities across the country will receive a $50,000 grant as part of its efforts to get more kids playing tennis. The contribution will be distributed over a three-year period to build new and adapt current tennis courts to accommodate 10 and Under Tennis, as well as support new programs. 10 and Under Tennis provides the opportunity to achieve immediate success by playing tennis on smaller courts, using smaller and lighter racquets and slower-moving and lower-bouncing balls. In total, the USTA will disperse $900,000 in grants to support its youth initiative and fund tennis programs.
Community officials will work with the USTA to ensure that local organizers have the proper techniques and skills to implement this new method of teaching tennis to kids. The USTA and its USTA Sections will be working with partners, such as schools, public parks, youth organizations, tennis facilities, and pros to incorporate tennis into physical education classes, after-school programs and other youth programs to drive participation.
The 2012 communities are:
- Atlanta, GA (east)
- Jackson, MS
- Pensacola, FL
- Atlanta, GA (west)
- Lee County, FL
- Richmond, VA
- Birmingham, AL
- Metro Phoenix East Valley, AZ
- San Francisco, CA
- Bayamon/San Juan, PR
- Mobile, AL
- Salt Lake City, UT
- Honolulu, HI
- Northern Albany, NY
- Seattle, WA
- Jacksonville, FL
- Northern Colorado
- Springfield, MA
“We are excited to be working with the local tennis leaders in these communities to help introduce the game to more kids,” said Kurt Kamperman, USTA Chief Executive, Community Tennis. “We believe tennis is the sport of opportunity that provides a lasting effect on the lives of children.”
The new and adapted courts should be used more frequently, following a global rule change in youth tennis which took effect on January 1, 2012. The rule change requires USTA-sanctioned 10 and Under Tennis tournaments be played utilizing proper-sized equipment and smaller courts, signifying the emergence of 10 and Under Tennis as an integral part of the development of young players.
Last year, the USTA awarded grants and provided support to 26 communities. To date, the USTA has invested over $2 million in grants to support its youth initiative. The USTA’s goal over five years is to bring 10 and Under Tennis to kids in more than 100 local markets nationwide.
For more information on the 10 and Under Tennis, visit 10andundertennis.com.
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