We’ve got a thriving staff of seasoned tennis pros here at Elysium Tennis. These are people with a variety of professional coaching backgrounds that are always glad to offer guidance and training to new tennis players of all skill levels. In the interest of introducing you to some of these talented tennis instructors, we’ll feature one each month here on our blog.
Since Paddle Tennis season is in full swing, our first spotlight features our resident Paddle Pro, Jake Wilson.
Jake started playing tennis at 6 years old. His father wanted him to learn to be active and athletic and would toss balls at him in the garage to work on his swing. Jake jokes, “I peaked at age 11.” He continued to maintain a connection to the sport growing up, and played tennis at the University of Iowa for 5 years (2 singles/2 doubles).
Paddle is definitely his side of the sport, a game he learned nearly 7 years ago while training on the east coast near Westchester, NY. “There are a whole lot of great players in that area,” Jake told us, noting that he got the amazing opportunity to train with Mark Parsons at the Westchester Country Club during his college years. In upstate New York there are dozens of country clubs with Paddle Tennis courts and a great many good players frequent those spots.
Jake worked at several of these tennis facilities and country clubs, training alongside many Top 10 Pros in the sport while coaching new players along the way. Elysium Tennis co-owner Brian Heil made sure to tell our interviewers, “Jake might act modest about his skill, but he’s truly one of the best teaching pros in Ohio. He built our Paddle program from the ground up.”
“Paddle is just more fun,” Jake says. “You play the ball off the screens so it’s always in play and the better you get, the sets can last two to three minutes.”
Jake trains people of all levels to learn and love the game of paddle, or platform, tennis here at Elysium. His advice is to take it slow and just learn to keep the ball in play. “Don’t try to win the point,” he says, remarking that standard tennis is all about playing quick rounds for the point. “[In paddle], just try not to miss. The skills you learn when you first start playing paddle tennis are the same ones you’ll use years down the road in professional tournaments.”
If you’re interested in trying Paddle Tennis here at Elysium, Jake offers a free lesson to newbies. Sign up on our paddle tennis page and be sure to say hi to Jake the next time you’re in the club.