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ParentingAces - The Junior and College Tennis Podcast

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The DIII Life with Matt Brisotti

June is prime recruiting season for many college coaches. That said, what better time to do a podcast about Division III and how it differs from DI? Coach Matt Brisotti leads both the men's and women's tennis teams at Hamilton College, a Division III school in New York that is part of the NESCAC, one of the stronger conferences in DIII. He played college tennis at Drew University (also DIII) and finished his collegiate career as one of the top players in Drew men's tennis history with 55...


The One with the Junior Tennis Official with Gary Link

A few weeks ago, I posted on our Facebook page that I would be doing an interview with a USTA official and asked you for questions to ask him. You did not disappoint! In this week's episode of the ParentingAces Podcast, recorded in person at Goldberg's Deli (!), I chat with Gary Link, an amazing official based in South Carolina who has committed the past 21 years to helping junior tennis players learn while playing. I have known him since my son's junior tennis years, and I can vouch for...


How Do You Survive the Puberty Years? with Katie Malinski

I know. No one likes talking about periods and puberty. But, it's a reality of life and a topic that we need to discuss if we're going to help our young players maintain a healthy body image and feel comfortable asking for help whenever and wherever they may need it. In this week's episode, Katie Malinski and I get pretty candid and raw in our conversation about how to talk to our children about their bodily changes, what to do if our daughter or other female player gets her period while...


Using Nutrition to Maximize Performance with Jackie Slomin, RD

Jackie Slomin is a sports dietitian who helps high school athletes get recruited to top tier colleges on scholarship with her Fuel Your Full Ride program. Having previously worked with hundreds of division I and II athletes from all different sports and holding a master's degree in sports nutrition and exercise science, Jackie is an expert at helping athlete's discover how to improve their performance, energy and recovery time by up to 50% with advanced sports nutrition principles that can...


Repurposing Tennis to Help People Grow Up with Jorge Capestany

Wouldn't it be awesome if you could find a teaching pro who actually had a college degree in Tennis? What if she had an in-depth knowledge not only of teaching forehands and backhands but also sport psychology, injury prevention, nutrition, and communication? Well, thanks to several hard-working and forward-thinking folks, the Professional Tennis Management (PTM) Certificate is now a reality! Coach Jorge Capestany, the Head Tennis Coach at Hope College, is leading the charge to create the...


Is This the Solution for Short-Scoring in Tennis? with Mark Milne

If you're a Tennis Parent or Coach, you know how frustrating it is to travel to a tournament only to find out the Tournament Director has decided to use short scoring due to weather or other impediments to play. This week's podcast guest, Mark Milne, has a great solution to present. Thirty30 Tennis presents a format where players start each game at the score 30-all then play out the game from there, deuces and all. This is not about no-ad scoring. It is not about sets played to 4. The...


Are College & ITFs Really Pathways to the Pros with Todd Widom

As of the taping of this week's podcast, there are 4 former college players in the Top 100 of the ATP and 2 former college players in the Top 100 of the WTA. It begs the question: is college tennis really a pathway to the pros? In this week's podcast, Todd Widom discusses how juniors should use college as a step in their overall development process. He also talks about the Junior ITF pathway and what a Junior ITF ranking may or may not mean in terms of college recruiting. As always, Todd...


Documenting the Winningest College Tennis Program in History with Mark Young

Mark Young started playing tennis as a junior in Australia training under relatively strict conditions. When his dad came home one day and announced he was moving the family to the US, the captain of the local high school team took Mark under his wing and helped him develop into a very proficient college player at Oberlin College, a top D3 program in Ohio. Fast-forward many years where Mark and his wife joined the faculty of USC in Southern California as part of the accounting department....


How to Make Sure YOU Are Recruitable with Tarek Merchant

With the new recruiting rules announced by the NCAA (click here), making sure your child is properly prepared for the process is crucial to his/her success. In this week's episode, we talk about how junior players can increase their exposure to college coaches, especially if they are not among the top-ranked players in their recruiting class. We also discuss several recruiting myths that seem to make the rounds among Prospective Student Athletes (PSAs) such as D1 has the best tennis and...


An Inside Look at UTR with Mark Leschly, CEO

Last week I published an article on the new partnerships between Universal Tennis Ratings and the two major coaching certification organizations, USPTA and PTR (click here to read the article). And this week UTR announced another new partnership with Chinese Tennis organization Love Sports. Now, you have the opportunity to hear from UTR's CEO, Mark Leschly, about how UTR works and what's in store for the future. Since there seem to be a lot of misconceptions around UTR and its algorithm, I...


Learning from Those Who Came Before Us

Several months ago, Tennis Parent (and now, Podcaster!), Robert Garrett called and asked me if I would ever consider doing an episode where he could ask questions of a top junior player, parent, and coach. Of course, I said YES, and this week's episode is the outcome of that conversation. Coach Todd Widom, who y'all have heard from many times on ParentingAces, arranged for his young player, Ronnie Hohmann, and Ronnie's parents, Ron and Judy, to come on the podcast so that Robert could ask...


The ParentingAces Brand

You never know where life will lead you! Several years ago, I started getting Facebook messages from a fellow Tennis Parent in the UK asking me questions about training abroad and college tennis opportunities in the US. As Sharon Gaskin and I began communicating more regularly, we realized we had a lot in common and now consider ourselves friends though we have never met in person. Sharon is a corporate trainer who, like me, decided to create a business wherein she advises and guides...


Sports Made Easy - Great New Tennis App!

Sports Made Easyis an online community that connects players, instructors, and facilities in real time. With the mobile app you can search for players using any preferred location and find a place to play. Participate in a friendly game or competition to help you improve your overall game. Parents and junior players can use the app to schedule practice matches which can be reported to UTR directly through the app IF both players agree. Sports Made Easy really does make the whole notion...


Tennis Parenting Across the Pond with Sharon Gaskin

We rarely get to hear from Tennis Parents outside the US, so I was thrilled when UK Tennis Parent Sharon Gaskin agreed to come on the podcast! Sharon shares her son, Ryan's, entire tennis journey starting with his early junior years and moving to his training at Soto Tennis Academy in Spain, eventually landing in the US to play college tennis. She talks about the difficulty of working with the LTA (the UK equivalent of USTA), deciding to send her son abroad to train in his early teen...


Refusing to Lose with Tami Matheny

Tami Matheny became a Mental Game Coach in 2008 and started Refuse2LoseCoaching, LLC. She knows the role the intangibles play in career success and longevity and has had experience with working on the mental skills at the collegiate level with tennis, basketball, softball, baseball, volleyball, golf, field hockey, cross country and soccer student-athletes. Tami believes that while it’s important to work on the physical and technical aspects of sport, the mental side is just as important;...


Coaching "Secrets" & the Future of Tennis Development with Craig Cignarelli

I can't tell you how thrilled I was to run into my old friend, Craig Cignarelli, at the BNP Paribas Open last weekend! It's been quite a while since we've chatted, and I knew he had some incredible knowledge to share with all of us. Thankfully, he agreed to sit down with me and talk junior development pathways and how technology is impacting today's up and coming players (and their parents). He also shares some "secrets" that coaches don't necessarily want us Tennis Parents to know, so you...


Training Like - and WITH! - the Pros with Todd Widom

Sixteen-year-old Ronnie Hohmann, who won the 2017 Eddie Herr 16s, recently had the unique opportunity to train with several players on the ATP tour. Both Ronnie - and his coach, Todd Widom - learned so much from these training sessions beyond just hitting forehands and backhands. All junior players and their coaches can learn a lot from studying how the pros train. With so many pro tournaments across the world, there are typically at least one or two days before the main draw starts where...


Doing the Work Right with Harsh Mankad

In order to further junior tennis development, it is crucial that coaches learn about and use the new technologies being developed. One of my favorites in terms of planning and communication is Tenicity. Harsh Mankad, the founder of Tenicity, is back with us to talk about the latest updates to his platform, including a new mobile app that parents, players, and coaches can use to track progress and keep the lines of communication open. Tenicity is all about organizing data, communicating...


Interview with ParentingAces Lisa Stone

I recently had the opportunity to be interviewed by the amazing talents behind the Great Shot Podcast, Alex Gruskin and Max Rothman. We did the interview as I was driving back to Atlanta from the Blue Gray Tennis Classic in Alabama, and I had a blast chatting with these guys! From their website: Welcome toooooo…. Another special edition of Hey, Great Shot!! In today’s episode, co-hosts Alex Gruskin and Max Rothman sit down with Parenting Aces founder Lisa Stone to discuss the many rule...


Are We Killing the Dream? Part 2

As an adjunct to this week's podcast with Tim Russell, I also had the opportunity to chat with Dave Miley who has written a very detailed article about the ITF Transition Tour ( Dave Miley was the Executive Director of Tennis Development for the International Tennis Federation from 1991 until 2015 and in this role he lead the biggest department of the ITF and was responsible for the non professional activities of the ITF...