Life of an athlete
Generally, kids go to school during the day and after school, they can have their own activities such as sports, music, or any activity they might want to do. Tennis is such a demanding sport that from a very young age kids are a forced to dedicate many hours a week and sometimes school becomes a big problem to combine both tennis and academics. Most of the regular schools do not provide any help to athletes, as everyone is treated equally with no exception. That is why many young players and parents consider the option of going to a tennis academy where there is a platform for players to train and study at the same time. The day of a young tennis player in a tennis academy might differ a lot from a day in the life of a regular kid.
Inside an academy, there are obviously different programs depending on age, level or, experience, on this article we are going to focus on the annual program which is the one where players stay for a year in an academy, live study, and train in the academy.
On an average day, a player might wake up around 8 to have breakfast, and start the day with some warm-up and physical conditioning. Afterward, a short tennis practice working on the different strokes and drills, and then go to school which is normally inside the academy and their classmates are their training partners many times, so every kid is in the same position which can help each other to push and understand that they are not alone in it. After school, players have lunch, some rest, and start the big part of the tennis training which normally lasts 2 to 3 hours of practice, including drills, points, matches...etc. After practice is over, players can go back to their rooms, have dinner, do some homework and have some free time with their friends. It is definitely a tight schedule but in order to become a professional player, there is no other way than dedication and hours of practice. After analyzing the different programs in tennis academies, an average of what they offer would be:
Between 15 and 20 hours of tennis training divided into different segment
10 hours of physical conditioning
Academic studies inside the academy
Housing on the academy campus
4-5 Meals a day
Nutrition program (on demand)
Mental training (on demand)
Travelling to tournaments (the price of travelling player and coach not included).
Tennis academies also count with other programs such as a semester or weekly programs as well as summer camps and different activities for all types of levels. Academies also have housing for parents who want to stay in the academy to accompany their children during the program or during the first days.