Tennis players making the grade in Smalley

Young members of Smalley Lawn Tennis Club with their new graded hoodies.
Young members of Smalley Lawn Tennis Club with their new graded hoodies.

A new system for monitoring progress of young players at Smalley Lawn Tennis Club has culminated in an awards presentation which saw several receive their first coloured hoodies.

The system operates in a similar way to that of belts in martial arts and aims to inspire children by awarding different coloured grades and give a sense of achievement in the twice yearly grading days.

The club, based at Horsley Woodhouse Community Hall during the winter months, has implemented dedicated training regimes to help everything from breathing techniques to muscle performance and general tennis skills.

It is now seeking more people from the community to join in at the sessions on Sunday mornings from 9.30-11.20 (except during school holidays)

Older children are also encouraged to join up with the club, particularly given the tennis gradings can be used for the Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme.

And if parents want to get involved too, a whole family membership price for the year is £58.

Club committee member Brigette Barnes said: “We offer a lovely, healthy way to spend some quality time with your family and in a beautiful location. Our head tennis coach being available on a Sunday is also a great incentive for families to get involved.

“Although we are lucky enough to have professional hard and soft courts that are continually maintained, you only need a racket and a tennis ball, you don’t need to be professional tennis players: that comes with practice!”

During the summer, the club is based at its outdoor courts in Smalley just off the A609 near Stainsby Hall Cricket Club.

A new tennis clubhouse is set to open in the summer.

Anyone wishing to find out more about the awards scheme or who wishes to join up with Smalley Lawn Tennis Club can visit, e-mail, send a text message only to Andy Taylor on 07870 560814 or call Brigette Barnes on 07971 272181.