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Kids learning to play tennis for free this summer (3 photos)

There's still room for more to take up the sport

On a sunny summer morning the Pine Street South tennis courts are busy.

Monday and Wednesday from 10:30 a.m. to noon, kids are picking up tennis racquets and hitting the court for free lessons with the Timmins Tennis Club.

The experience is open to youth ages eight to 16 at all levels of experience. 

Before the mid-week session started, Ethan Harris and Hayden Bourgon warmed up on one of the courts. 

Ten-year-old Ethan just picked up the sport last week because he wanted to try a new thing.

“I like it a lot, actually,” he said.

The lessons are a partnership with the tennis club, Misiway Milopemahtesewin Community Health Centre and Timmins Family Health Team. 

Going into the summer, the Timmins Tennis Club's Clifford Laming said they had a goal of interacting with 75 youth. They met that goal last week.

“With three coaches there at all times, we can handle 20, 25 kids,” he said. “Even though we’ve hit our target, we’re still at about half capacity so if a bunch more kids were to show up, they would still have a fantastic time.”

The lessons are based on the group that is there.

Laming explained every week they do a quick review, and if someone needs different help a coach can work with them one-on-one.

“Once the success is felt and they want to mend back into the group then that’s what happens and we carry on,” he said.

To participate, show up to the court Monday or Wednesday morning. While the lesson starts at 10:30 a.m., Laming is usually on site around 10 a.m.

There are tennis racquets and balls available for the kids to use for free. 

The Timmins Tennis Club has been around for three years and has almost 80 adult members. 

By introducing youth to the sport, Laming said they're not trying to develop the next Milos Raonic. 

"We’re here trying to develop guys like us. It’s a game you can continue on into your 70s,” he said.

The lessons started at the beginning of the month and continue every week until the end of August. 

He said the kids keep showing up, which is what the club is looking for. 

"Because if they’re coming back they’re having fun and we’re keeping it light, we’re keeping it fun,” he said.


Maija Hoggett

About the Author: Maija Hoggett

Maija Hoggett is an experienced journalist who covers Timmins and area
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