15. Give back by supporting USTA Serves
USTA Serves, the USTA’s charitable and philanthropic entity, supports the academic and social endeavors of children in need across the United States, seeking to improve young lives through a combination of tennis and education. The mission of USTA Serves is to support, monitor and promote programs that enhance the lives of at-risk children and individuals with disabilities through the integration of tennis and education. Since 1995, thousands of children and young adults have benefitted from the generosity of USTA Serves’ donors, with the organization awarding more than $10 million in program grants and $2.5 million in college scholarships. USTA Serves also offers you a chance to become a permanent part of the US Open through its Avenue of Aces initiative. Click here (www.ustaserves.com ) to learn more and to see how you can make a difference.
16. Become a tennis advocate and help get the word out
You can give your community the gift of tennis by becoming a tennis advocate! If you want to spread the good word that it can change lives and improve the community in which you live, serving as an advocate is easier than you think. The USTA’s advocacy initiative – The Big Serve – connects the passion of USTA members and the larger tennis community with public policy needs of the communities in which they live. Everything from the building or renovating of places to play, creating new opportunities to play during after-school, protecting varsity tennis and creating opportunities to play recreational tennis on college campuses can be your way of giving back. Advocating for tennis is a critical component to the long term sustainability of the sport. Click here (www.usta.com/thebigserve) and view one of the tools the USTA has developed to highlight the opportunities, the successes, and the challenges of generating public support for the growth of the game of tennis. The Big Serve’s online initiative empowers tennis enthusiasts everywhere by giving them access to a wide range of tools to help make a positive change in their communities.
17. If you’re not playing or watching tennis, why not read about it? Pick up a tennis book written by one of your favorite players
You can stay connected to tennis while you’re still connected to your favorite easy chair, as there are plenty of titles that put you inside the game with just the turn of a page. Topping our list of must-reads are The Inner Game of Tennis, by W. Timothy Gallwey; A Handful of Summers, by Gordon Forbes; A Champion’s Mind: Lessons From a Life in Tennis, by Pete Sampras; Open: An Autobiography, by Andre Agassi; and coming this June, Hardcourt Confidential: Tales from Twenty Years in the Pro Tennis Trenches, by U.S. Davis Cup captain Patrick McEnroe.
18. Learn the best way to teach your child how to play tennis
Most children get their first exposure to the game through a parent. Regardless of your tennis experience or skill level, learn innovation ways to introduce your child to the game. For more information on how to attend a workshop, go to /Youth-Tennis/.
19. Challenge yourself by playing on a new surface
Are you a monogamous tennis player? In the U.S., that likely means that you play exclusively on hard courts, the most common surface. Though a must for marriage, monogamy isn’t best for tennis. This summer, give in to the temptation and play on something different. If you’re a hard-court player, find a clay court and open your eyes to what it can do for your game. You’ll become steadier, because on slow clay, you can’t easily offset mistakes with winners. You’ll improve your hand-eye coordination, too, as you learn to judge tricky bounces. Best of all, you’ll give your aching knees a much needed rest. Clay court loyalists should give hard courts a try, for different reasons. The speed of hard courts will force you to improve your preparation and offensive skills, and hit more penetrating strokes. You’ll have more chances to approach the net, too. No matter your favorite surface, there’s one more thing you should do this summer if you’re lucky enough to have the opportunity: play on grass. There aren’t many grass courts left in the United States, but it’s worth seeking them out. Grass makes tennis seem like a different sport and helps you appreciate how many ways there are to play it well, and to enjoy it.
20. Receive up to the minute news by following the USTA on Twitter and Facebook
As tennis fans, we love to know what’s happening in our sport— and of course, we want to know what’s new with the 2010 US Open. What better way to stay connected than following the USTA on Facebook and Twitter. Click here (http://twitter.com/usta ) and receive updates from around the tennis world. As two of the most prominent and highly trafficked social networking websites, Facebook and Twitter give fans the chance to interact and send direct messages to friends and followers with the intention of helping people to get to know each other better. Click here (http://www.facebook.com/pages/US-Open-Tennis-Championships-Official/96832392186?ref=ts) to join the 45,403 fans of the US Open Tennis Championships Official Facebook page. By joining onto one or more of these sites, you too can truly become a tennis “insider.”
21. Boost your fitness level and improve your game all in one hour by attending a Cardio Tennis class
If you love tennis and only have an hour to get a complete fitness workout, Cardio Tennis is the program for you. Developed by the USTA in conjunction with the Tennis Industry Association, Cardio Tennis works the whole body with a focus on fitness through tennis. There are classes for all levels of players, and no prior tennis experience is necessary to join. Taught by a teaching professional, Cardio Tennis is a group activity that includes a warm-up, a cardio workout and a cool-down phase. Click here (www.cardiotennis.com) to find a Cardio Tennis site near you.