A question I get asked a lot as a coach is, “Is my son / daughter too young to start tennis?” Before I answer this have a thought for what you’re actually asking. Is it, “can my son / daughter play tennis matches?” Or “is it the right time to take their development journey forward?” Tots tennis is about two things in this order 1. Having fun and enjoyment and 2. Learning new skills; this could include throwing, catching, hitting, communicating / making friends and lots more. If children are playing and enjoying it then they are learning and tennis will be a great platform to learn more and develop their skills further.
So what age can they start? Every child is different but remember there is no rush. A lot of the time if you ask them if they would like to try they will give you the answer. To help this along as parents we can introduce the interest at the park or in the garden or by going for a walk when a tennis session is on and ask them questions about what they see. My son loves playing with tennis balls, footballs, volleyballs and beach balls, anything he can throw, catch, hit or kick he enjoys it and the pre-school he attends helps with this interest a lot.
At 3 years old he could join in a little tots group where it’s all about doing and not so much listening to instruction but at the moment he is getting a lot of chances to play already. So to answer the question, there isn’t really an answer in terms of age. For clubs / Mini Red you could say 4 – 5 years old and tots 3 years old. The main consideration is, will they join in, have a go at new things and listen to the coach and most of all…
Will they have fun? If YES I’ll see you at Wells Tennis Club, if NO keep playing in the parks and gardens and I’ll see you soon.