1. What is unique about the NIZUC tennis experience?
There are 2 things that really sets us apart I believe. First, the fact that NIZUC is the only Resort in the Cancun/Riviera Maya area that has hired an international Tennis Management Company (Peter Burwash International, www.pbitennis.com) to direct their tennis program with a highly qualified, and well-experienced Tennis Professional. This should truly enhance the Guest’s experience at our tennis courts.
Second, would be our well-maintained, sand-filled, artificial grass tennis courts. This surface often has a bad reputation due to the minimal maintenance required just not getting done. However, when maintained properly and installed with the right amount of sand, these courts provide a fantastic soft feel that is great on the joints and back, as well as a slower and lower bounce ideal for teaching and lengthier rallies.
2. What are your top 2 tips for beginners?
The only moment that counts in tennis is the moment the ball makes contact with the strings. Everything before and after that moment happened to make that moment feel as good as possible and to help give the desired result. If Contact isn’t there, then nothing else really matters regarding the student’s form.
The best way of achieving better contact, and thus better control over the ball, is by playing lots of “mini-tennis”, i.e. tennis in the service boxes while standing near the service line. This takes away all the concerns that a larger swing may create, and allows the student to focus on contact, and making the ball go left, right, up & down as desired. It’s a great way to learn the game, before backing up to the baseline and adding all the other components of tennis. It’s like when we learn to drive, we rarely start on the highway, instead opting for the slower side roads…in tennis, the side roads are mini-tennis and the highway is playing tennis from the baseline.
3. What players do you admire most and why?
My favorite player is Roger Federer for sure. He makes everything look so easy on the court, and has had such a long career playing at such a high level, almost completely injury free…something completely unheard of in the game today.
I also like the fact that so much of his game is teachable at the recreational levels as well…things like his use of backspin (slice) on his one-hand backhand, his steady feet on his serve, his use of the opposite hand to prepare the racket on both sides, and his tremendous balance, just to name a few…
4. How did you start playing tennis?
It was very strange, My Mom and Dad never played, and I had no friends that played either, growing up in the “Hockey Crazy” city of Edmonton, Canada.
One day in July I was watching Wimbledon for some unknown reason, and asked my Mom if I could buy a racket and balls. She got me a cheap wooden racket and some blue/orange tennis balls, the color of my favorite hockey team. We had a large wall at the apartment building we lived in, and I just started hitting balls against the wall, hour after hour, til I got the courage to go to the public courts nearby and ask others if they wanted to hit balls with me…That’s how I got started at the age of 8 years old!