10 and Under Tennis
Smaller courts, shorter racquets and balls that bounce lower. Now, it’s easier for kids to play the game and develop a love for the sport right from the start! For teaching pros, 10 and Under Tennis will help you grow the game – and your business! Learn how easy it is to enhance your youth tennis offerings, get more kids on the court and bolster your bottom line. Learn more here.
The mission of USPTA Adaptive Tennis is to foster a tennis environment that supports and promotes programs and initiatives that meet the recreational needs of individuals with physical, mental, or emotional challenges. The game of tennis can be adapted to accommodate any age, environment, condition, or disability. The ultimate goal is to enable those who might not otherwise have the opportunity to learn and play tennis to be able to do so.
When you register with the USTA Adaptive Tennis Program Registration, adaptive players in your area can be matched up with you. Register now
View the list of registered programs
Adaptive tennis spotlights
A special note regarding Wheelchair Tennis – Wheelchair Tennis also offers a track from recreational play to high performance competition, so players can work through the track from recreational to tournaments all the way to World Team Cup and Paralympics. While Wheelchair Tennis and Adaptive Tennis frequently overlap, it is important to note that the Wheelchair Tennis pathway leads to a highly competitive circuit of USTA sanctioned tournaments nationwide.
Adult Tennis League
USPTA Adult Tennis League is a rewarding program developed by USPTA to increase tennis participation and expand tennis activities at all facilities. The adult league has a unique doubles-only squad format, and the flexibility offers players competitive on-court action and off-court camaraderie.
The league is flexible enough to adapt to different seasons and areas of the country, as well as to each USPTA member's special needs and facility requirements. Doubles teams of various playing levels make up a squad, which means that players with an NTRP rating of 4.5 are playing at their own level, but are part of a squad that includes teams at the 3.0, 3.5 and 4.0 levels, too.
Besides an adult doubles league, the same format could be used for:
- Interfacility leagues using one doubles team at each level, plus substitutes.
- One-day, pro-set tournaments.
- Singles competitions for juniors from different age groups or class levels forming a squad or team.
The league is open to recreational players 19 years or older. Professional players and full-time teaching professionals are not eligible. USPTA does not require membership in any organization to play in the USPTA Adult Tennis League.
Adult Tennis League FAQ
What makes the USPTA Adult Tennis League unique?
One of the most striking aspects of the USPTA Adult Tennis League is its format, which is flexible enough to adapt to different seasons and areas of the country, as well as to each USPTA member's special needs and facility requirements. The format only requires that a facility have two courts in order to participate in the league. This makes the league popular at both small and large facilities, even during prime tennis hours.
The doubles-only format is open to men, women or mixed doubles. A facility may have one or more squads and each squad consists of eight teams divided between NTRP levels (or the equivalent) of play (two players per team and two teams per level). The recommended levels are 3.0 and below, 3.5, 4.0 and 4.5/5.0. The league's flexibility allows pros to adjust the levels and team numbers within squads to meet player availability.
What is the mixed-level format?
When USPTA introduced the Adult Tennis League in 1992, it also introduced a new concept. The mixed-level format includes one men's doubles team and one women's doubles team at each of the four levels within a squad. This format is popular among couples who would like to earn points for the same squad, but play at different skill levels.
Why does USPTA suggest 16-player squads?
Sixteen players on a squad sounds like a large number until one realizes that there are only four players at each of four different levels. This actually should encourage participating facilities to sponsor more squads.
An added bonus is the opportunity for players to win at either, or both, the team level or squad competitions. A weaker team at one level still might become a winner on a successful squad, or a strong team still might win its competitive level even if the larger squad loses.
What if there are not enough players at a level to form a squad?
Recognizing that some areas may have few players available at certain levels, USPTA designed the league with flexibility that accommodates such conditions. Tennis teachers may adapt the squad format to include the four most popular levels within their area. For example, squads within a league may consist of 2.5, 3.0, 3.5 and 4.0 levels. Pros also may duplicate levels within a squad, if most players participate at that skill level.
With so many players on a squad, how can facilities with few courts or limited court time get involved?
The USPTA Adult Tennis League requires only two courts for play. When scheduling league matches, two levels will play at their own facility, while the remaining levels play at the opponents' facility. This type of schedule allows clubs and facilities of various sizes to participate in the league without reserving large blocks of court time. It also promotes sociability among league participants and introduces a number of marketing opportunities for pro shops and clubs.
Why did USPTA decide to run a league?
A study conducted by the Tennis Industry Committee indicated that leagues are a powerful medium for increasing tennis participation at both the competitive and non-competitive levels. Other recent findings indicate that an estimated 83 percent of all people participating in tennis leagues are between the ages of 18 and 54 – corresponding closely with the ages of club members at USPTA pros' facilities.
The survey found that league tennis participants are more likely than their recreational counterparts to play, take lessons and use court time, and are much more likely to involve their children in tennis and to purchase new shoes, apparel or racquets.
As an association of tennis-teaching professionals, USPTA has long been involved in running leagues. USPTA members are trained in all aspects of the tennis industry, including club and pro shop management, tournaments and leagues, and junior and adult programs.
Does this league conflict with any other existing leagues?
It is not intended to conflict with other leagues. Most USPTA pros already are involved in USTA leagues and it wouldn't make sense to conflict with our members.
There are several good league programs throughout the United States, such as the USTA leagues, World TeamTennis leagues, the ALTA leagues of Atlanta, and the Phoenix Challenge League for seniors in the Southwest. The intention of USPTA is not to compete with any organization or to take over their events. It is the Association's hope that if organizations think there is a need for additional tennis activities, they will get involved. Wherever there's a need, USPTA will promote, encourage and support any tennis activity.
What is the criteria for participation in the league?
A player must be affiliated with a sponsoring club, facility or organization and be 19 years or older. USPTA would like to expand the league to include companies with access to tennis facilities, schools, hospitals and health clubs. With the purpose of increasing overall participation in tennis, USPTA has made the eligibility requirements minimal to accommodate most, if not all, players.
Is it expensive to join the league?
The USPTA Adult Tennis League promotes fun on the court at an affordable price. Local squad entry fees may vary depending on costs of court time, tennis balls, clinics or special league events. However, each player pays only a small share of the entry fee. If substitutes are added, each player's share becomes even less.
How is the league established in an area?
USPTA professionals serve as Area Directors who coordinate leagues within specific geographical locations. Area Directors select the weeks of league play, solicit pros to organize squads, determine the league's doubles format and schedule the matches.
Site Directors recruit players for squads at tennis facilities. They are responsible for communicating regulations to players, reserving court time, gathering player information and collecting entry fees. Site Directors do not have to be USPTA professionals and may be well-organized recreational players who would like to organize a squad.
Champion of Champions
Most clubs have a championship tournament. Those championships may be made more meaningful by creating a Champion of ChampionsSM tournament, pitting the champs of each club against one another. This could end up large enough to resemble a city championship of sorts or a smaller event that includes the finalists or semifinalists from just a few participating facilities.
Champion of Champions is an event that adds incentive for members to play in their own club championships; brings together old playing partners and new friends from different facilities; unites the local tennis community; and provides competitive draws.
Also, tapping into new markets or growing existing ones is easy with this format. For example, divisions for seniors and for children and families from 10 and Under Tennis may be added to the singles and doubles draws for men and women. Age groups and father-son, mother-daughter, parent-young child and husband-wife divisions might be easy to include, provided there is enough court space.
By calling a few fellow tennis professionals and inviting them to join in a Champion of Champions event, you may be able to start an annual tournament with lots of possibilities. The event might rotate to a different host facility each year or be a Lessons for Life fundraiser. Players from each facility could act as a team, gaining points with every individual match toward a facility championship trophy.
The USPTA Junior Circuit™ is a series of tournaments created to introduce less experienced junior players to competition and allow them to prepare for higher-level tournament play. The junior circuit is also a natural progression from 10 and Under Tennis to non-qualified competition for junior boys and girls ages 10 to 18. This program enhances tournament experience and prepares the player for more advanced competition at USTA-sanctioned tournaments, if that is the player's goal.
Key elements for a USPTA Junior Circuit include:
- A series of tournaments encouraging regular competition for juniors.
- Tournaments targeting novice/non-qualified competitors or recreational players (pros determine age and level categories).
- Local events in one city or within a metropolitan area, making it convenient for players, parents and pros.
- A point system that rewards players immediately.
- A "masters" and playoff system.
- Low-cost fun for the family.
Like all USPTA programs, this activity is designed to give ultimate control of how the program is run to local teaching professionals, who know what will work best in a particular location or for a distinct group of customers. In addition to promoting and increasing local tennis activity, the program allows flexibility by placing no requirements or restrictions on tennis teachers or on the beginner competitors.
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Lessons for Life
USPTA members are active fundraisers in their communities, using tennis as a vehicle for helping others. Through Lessons for LifeTM, USPTA encourages this activity and tracks some of the impact that tennis professionals have on local and national charities.
From 1999-2011, USPTA members have raised more than $47 million in donations.
Lessons for Life is officially celebrated in October. However, USPTA members run fundraisers year-round, and they take a variety of forms, such as tournaments, pro-ams, auctions, black-tie dinners and clinics. In their reports, individual USPTA members have indicated that they have been doing fundraisers for the same charities for years. Others have been motivated to organize new fundraisers - and, in at least one case, co-found a nonprofit foundation - because of hardships that have struck members of their own tennis communities.
"Our members continue to stay committed to raising money for important charitable causes, while at the same time bringing their communities together through these efforts with tennis," said Diane Selke, Lessons for Life chair, USPTA Master Professional and head tennis professional at Valley Country Club in Centennial, Colo.
Benefiting charities have included American Cancer Society, Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Tim & Tom Gullikson Foundation, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, Scripps Stevens Cancer Center and many smaller, local charities.
Members of the public may find a fundraiser to participate in by contacting a USPTA-certified Professional or Recreational Coach, or by locating a USPTA member through Find-a-Pro on this website.
Pros: Click here to register your event.
For more information about Lessons for Life, contact email@example.com.
Tennis Across America
Tennis Across AmericaTM is a free lesson program sponsored by USPTA. It began in 1990 as a way to increase the player base, and hundreds of thousands have been reached. At the same time, USPTA members can piggyback local promotion of their own programs and businesses on the national publicity campaign administered by the World Headquarters. One important aspect is emphasizing the multicultural segment of Tennis Across America as a means of increasing tennis participation at the grassroots level. Additionally, USPTA Pros are encouraged to host an Adaptive Tennis clinic.
Events can be held at any time of the year but should be registered before the July 2 deadline.
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For more information about Tennis Across America, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.