Racquetball is Not Tennis

Did I mention I’m taking tennis lessons? This was my attempt at saying, “suck it junior high tennis coach, I’ll show you I can play tennis!” because yeah, I tried out for the team and clearly couldn’t play. (20+ years later and getting my revenge!) Tennis is big on my mom’s side of the family with many uncles playing. One summer I asked my uncle if he’d teach me and he said, “I’ll teach you once you can hit the ball 100 times against the wall.” Guess what, I haven’t had to do that at all in my lessons. I think he didn’t want to teach me because I was his annoying niece. So I tried to hit the ball on the one open wall at my granny’s house with only about 3 feet of space. I failed. I gave up. But I still wanted to play.

Fast forward 20+ years and adult tennis lesson are offered at the nearby tennis dome (year-round tennis in Minnesota, baby!). I started taking them a year ago and have mostly kept up with it since.

It’s a lot of fun and and I feel athletic even though I have NO athletic bone in my body. Obviously people with more athletic skills do much better but for me it’s just enough to challenge me and yet stay fun.

After my first session of lessons, I decided to buy my own racket. Justin came along too and bought one. For some reason, I was under the impression that he had played before.

“Let’s play together!” he said. I was all for that because one day-a-week of lessons wasn’t enough for me. I wanted to play all the time. So I booked a court, got a babysitter and we went to play tennis. I was excited to play with someone outside my lessons and excited this was something Justin and I could do.

We got to the court and I served to Justin first. When the ball bounced to him, he hit is so hard it didn’t even bounce. It went above my head!

“Hey! I thought you said you could play tennis?”

“I’ve played racquetball.”


So I had him serve. That too went way over my head.

I spent time showing him the grips and giving some pointers (re: don’t hit it so hard).¬†After I got his a few times, I suggested we just play mini tennis (just hitting the ball lightly over the net). So the hour wasn’t a complete waste but I did say he should take lessons of his own.

And that’s what he’s doing. He has to unlearn everything he learned playing racquetball but he’ll be fine. And maybe one day we can play again. And I won’t get hit.

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