The Penticton Tennis Club hosted a camp this week so players of all levels could learn new skills and fine tune those they possess.
While some players took crazy swings to get the ball over the net, others attempted precision shots.
The week was also a reminder of how fun the game is.
Steve Hunn, an instructor with the Penticton Tennis Club, said the problem for some kids is the game is difficult to play.
“Tennis, it’s hard just to hit the ball,” he said. “If you can’t hit it, you can’t play the game. We want to get them to the point where it’s fun to play.”
The key is to build their skills as they are going along, he said. The camp attracted 15 kids ages five to 14, the most they have ever had.
With the younger players, focus is on ball control, hand-eye co-ordination and getting them used to making contact. The older group worked on putting together plays to earn a point. One of the drills involved having two players at the net and two at the baseline. Hunn wanted them thinking about winning a point.
“We are building towards being able to play an actual match,” he said, adding that by the end of the week, the goal was to have them serving and playing a proper game.
“They all have some good shots,” he said. “I like what I have seen from all of them.”
Sasha Purton and Kayla Haukaas are two players in the older group seeing improvement.
“I really like it. It’s made me much better,” said Purton, who focused on his backhand skills and slicing the ball. “You get to play games often and improve your tennis skills.”
Purton said he has learned a lot from Hunn, as has Haukaas, 12, signed up to improve her serving skills, but she has had to be patient as the group had not worked on that the first three days.
“It’s not good,” said Haukaas of her ability to serve.
However, she wants to improve on everything and has seen that with her forehand and backhand.
Based on what Hunn has seen, he believes the group is having fun.
“It’s been great,” he said. “It’s just awesome to see the number of kids who are participating.”