We all know that skills on the court come from consistent practice – and that’s especially true of junior players. Here are some fun activities you can share with your kids at home, in a park … wherever! And watch how their control of the racquet and the ball improve!
Play with just a tennis ball
Applause – 1+ players. Player tosses a ball up, claps their hands twice, and catches the ball after one bounce.
Ball Drop – 2+ players. With partners standing several feet apart, one player has a ball in each hand and arms extended at shoulder height. The player holding the balls drops one at a time and the partner runs to catch it after one bounce. After several attempts, switch roles.
Roll N’ Shuffle – 2+ players. Partners stand several feet apart, and both begin to shuffle side to side and then roll a ball back and forth to each other between their feet.
Play with a ball and tennis racquet
Call My Name – 2+ players. Children are in pairs, one partner holding a ball and the other holding a racquet. The partner with the racquet stands with his/her back to the player with the ball. The player with the ball tosses it up and calls out the partner’s name. The partner has to turn around, react, and trap the ball against the racquet face after one bounce.
Round-a-Bout – 1+ players. Each child places a ball on a racquet and rolls the ball around the edge (palm up), without allowing it to fall off the racquet face.
Bungee Jump – 1+ players. Each player balances a ball on the racquet strings. The player lets the ball drop off the racquet and bounce once, then catches it back on the racquet strings.
Bumps-Ups – 1+ players. Each child bounces a ball lightly (about 12 inches high), on the racquet strings with one hand, palm up or down.
Tap-Downs – 1+ players. Each child “dribbles” the ball with the racquet at waist level.
Invent-a-Bounce – 1+ players. The player(s) taps a ball in various combinations without stopping. Use tap-downs, bump-ups, alternating each side of the racquet head, etc. Be creative!
These games make practice engaging and stimulating, so your player can build skills, improve coordination, gain confidence and most of all – have fun! We wish you the same!