Magazine article Parks & Recreation

Strong Serve

Magazine article Parks & Recreation

Strong Serve

Article excerpt

Helping your agency develop and build tennis programs-despite the tough economy

TENNIS PROGRAMMING at parks and recreational facilities is growing nationwide, as evidenced by the increase in tennis participation. In 2009 tennis participation surpassed 30 million for the first time in the 22-year history of the Taylor Group's Annual Study on Participation and the Sporting Goods Manufacturers Association recently found that tennis is the fastest-growing traditional sport in the country.

This success is built on the flexibility and openness of the parks and recreation network. In many ways, a public parks and recreational facility is the ideal setting for children to learn how to play tennis, offering programs in a manner that is inviting to youngsters while also teaching them an appreciation for the game away from the hubbub that sometimes surrounds camps and academies.

All of this adds up to good news for those facilities looking to expand thentennis prograniming: In the current difficult economic climate, USTA assistance to build and develop tennis programming is readily available - and free.

The first step in securing assistance for developing your tennis program is to register with the Tennis in the Parks Initiative, a partnership between the USTA and NRPA. Doing so provides the USTA with the specific demographics of the current tennis programming in parks and recreation departments around the country, allowing the association to develop the resources that will better capture the market and help grow your program. …

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