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QuickStart Tennis Event Timeline

QuickStart Tennis Event Timeline


The QuickStart Tennis format is a perfect way for children to first experience, in a positive manner, competition on a scaled-down court that is appropriate for their age, size, strength and ability.
It is very important that every effort is made to get it right for children if we want any chance of them developing a love and understanding of the game. Essentially what that means is the event length, scoring and format needs to be appropriate for the age of the child. These events are best held locally, with maximized play opportunities, and in a fun environment with the emphasis on participation instead of winning.
Typically when planning anything you want to have a goal in mind. You are in luck because the goals for any QuickStart tournament are very simple:
  1. Fun
  2. Participation
  3. Encouragement
  4. Being with friend
  5. Practice tennis skills

1. What kind of competition/play day will work best for the participants?

  • 5 – 6 year olds
    • 1-hour events
    • Activity day with stations that emphasis skills needed to play on a 36-foot court, emphasis on skills and coordination
    • Short activity stations, lasting no more than 10 minutes
  • 7 – 8 year olds
    • 2 to 4 hours
    • Flighted event with a division for newer players and more advanced players
    • Non-elimination events
      • Team based events
      • Round Robins
      • Compass Draw
    • Scoring
      • Matches consisting of 2 out of 3, 7 point tiebreaks (scoring used in sanctioned events)
      • Timed matches
      • Shortened-scoring games
  • 9 – 10 year olds
    • 3 hour to half-day events
    • Flighted event with a division for newer players and more advanced players
    • Non-elimination tournament
    • Round Robin
    • Compass Draw
    • Junior Team Tennis League play
    • Scoring
      • 2 out of 3 short set – no add scoring, first to 4 games,  7 point tiebreak is used as a third set (scoring used in sanctioned events)
      • Timed matches
      • Shortened scoring – 1 set, tie breaks
2. Set the date:
  • Check the calendar for available dates
  • Are the courts available?
  • Look at potential conflicts (i.e., what else is going on in your area that might compete with your event)
  • Can the event be run at a time to boost upcoming programming (clinic, summer camp, etc.)?
  • Check with your section for sanctioning information
3. Determine the budget. (Sample budget sheet)
  • Your expenses will help determine the cost to participants and or the amount of sponsorship money needed.
  • Possible expenses
  • Court fees
  • Balls
  • Nets or barrier tape
  • Tape for marking off courts
  • Gifts for participants
  •  Participant awards
  •  Food and beverage
4. Get the word out:
  • Send out entries/flyers
  • Contact schools
  • Work with your local CTA
  • Post entries online
  • E-mail blasts
  • Register the event on tennislink.net
  • Talk to other teaching pros in the area
5.  Recruit volunteers
  • Planning group
  • Parents
  • Local tennis players
  • High school/college students
6. Make sure you have everything necessary for the event
  • Rain plan
  • Nets or caution tape
  • Throw-down lines/masking tape to mark off court lines
  • Balls
  • Extra racquets for participants who do not have the correct size
  • Awards and prizes for participants
  • Photo release forms
  • First-Aid kit
  • Activity equipment for station – bean bags, hula hoops, targets
  • Food/snack and drinks
  • Draw sheets
  • Scoring devices for each court
  • Create the schedule of play
Day of the event – set up early!
  • Set up courts and welcome desk
  • Court schedule sheet
  • Draw sheets
  • Equipment – balls, extra racquets
  • Volunteer orientation – if this has not been conducted sooner.
  • Food, drinks/water and ice
  • Parent/player orientation
    • It is important to hold a brief meeting with the players in each age group before they go on court for the first time. Remember, most of these kids and their parents will have no tournament experience and will be unfamiliar with tournament protocol. The following are a few suggestions of things to mention:
      • Welcome all the players and introduce them to tournament organizers and volunteers. Briefly talk about the QuickStart Tennis Play format, the courts, equipment and shortened scoring. This will make them feel like they are part of something bigger. Encourage them to visitwww.usta.com for information
      • Brief them on facility and tennis etiquette.
      • Explain the tournament format and how the day will proceed:
      • Check the posted draws for their name and court number
      • Go to the court at the appropriate time
      • Explain the scoring format to be used, reminding them to keep track of the score (remind them that they change sides on odd games)
      • At the end of their time report the score to the court monitor/Tournament
    • Most of all……..HAVE FUN!!
Post event
  • Send a recap with pictures to local newspaper, section and district
  • Asses the good and the bad of the event
  • Ask for feedback from participants, parents and volunteers.
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