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What being a tennis pro/coach actually means and how it seems to be perceived by other people?

So a client of mine made a great point recently in regards to how tennis pros are seen by others. Her personal observation was that tennis pros are much more than just people feeding balls. However, there was another person that straight up thought that tennis pros don’t know anything else besides tennis.

Here is my take:

About 95% of the tennis coaches have B.S. degrees on top of any other tennis specific certifications, probably half if not more, also have a M.S. degree. Most of them have competed at the highest levels of tennis, have played professional tournaments and/or have played college tennis. There is a lot of tennis coaches who have graduated from Ivy League schools who CHOSE coaching as a career. I personally know a few. You see the thing is that to be a great tennis coach you actually have to understand people. Good tennis coaches are also life coaches & lifelong learners. They have to serve different roles and have variety of skills such as: marketing knowledge (website development, seo optimization, branding and etc.), payroll/accounting skills, writing, public speaking, listening, great diplomats, fluent in foreign languages, leadership skills, sales and etc. So, you see it’s not that simple. They also deal with different people everyday and they have to be able to understand them, to be able to adjust their ways of coaching and communicating in order for them to succeed. You don’t just wake up and decide to be a tennis pro, it’s a life journey. I know of people who have degrees in Biology, Mathematics, Computer Science even doctors and lawyers who ended up being coaches or directors of tennis. You see they CHOSE to do that because they have figured out what their purpose is. When you have been an active athlete for so long, have been on a scholarship in college for tennis, have competed on the tour, you can’t just get stuck behind a desk all of a sudden. The passion for tennis draws those people back.

So yes, tennis pros are actually very unique people who have a multitude of qualities and skills. They choose to do what they do. I had a buddy of mine who dropped a job on Wall St. in order to pursue a coaching career (he was an Ivy League grad and a tennis stand out player, like All American level) and was miserable at that Wall St job where he was making big $$. Choose to be happy, find your purpose even if that means you will make less money initially. There is this social stigma where unless you have a high paying job you are a less of a person. Let me tell you, it absolutely does not matter where you went to school, how much money you got and what car you drive. If you are not happy about what you are doing & you are always stressed out than what’s the point? If you have no purpose in your life all those things don’t matter. Find something you are passionate about and do it, don’t worry what society things about it. It all depends what success means to you. To some people success is having loads of $$, high end cars, mentions and etc. To others success means, making a difference in other people’s lives.

Being a tennis pro/coach is a lifestyle not a job. The most successful tennis coaches you will see are some of the brightest people ever and they could have been whatever they wanted to but they chose to do tennis because tennis runs in their DNA. See you out there!

Emil the Tennis Pro, B.S. in Hospitality Management & Business, M.S. in Transformative Leadership, Certification in Sports Management from United States Sports Academy, USTA Sports Science Certified, Tennis Performance Trainer (TPT) by the International Tennis Performance Association iTPA, Officially Published Dissertation on ProQuest #10185253 and etc......

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