Could Tennis Be Your Family’s 2016 Resolution?

Junior Team Tennis

Tennis is a sport that can can be played for a lifetime. To play tennis all you need is a racquet, balls, one other person and a court! Because Richmond is consistently ranked (by United States Tennis Association) as one of the nations top ten tennis cities, we have an extraordinary menu of inexpensive tennis options for all ages. Because tennis is so widespread in Richmond, reasonably priced instruction is offered by neighborhood recreation clubs, city/county recreation programs and even by many private clubs to non-members. In addition, Richmond offers team options (even for beginners!) for players from age 5 all the way into late, late adulthood.

You should consider joining other Richmonders on the “court”! Giving your family the healthy gift of tennis would be a great way to start of 2016!


  • Tennis can be begun at ANY age from 3 to age 93.
  • You only have to have one other person to play.
  • Tennis is flexible. You can set up a days/times that work for your schedule.
  • Tennis Team options for Richmonders start at the age of 5 and continue throughout adulthood.
  • Because so many Richmonders play tennis, our tennis programs separate players by skill level. If you are a beginner, you only play against other beginners. If you are advanced, you play advanced players.
  • Tennis courts are readily accessible at many public high schools or public parks for no cost.
  • Tennis equipment is inexpensive. Adult equipment can be purchased second hand and children’s sized equipment can be bought at any “super center store” and most tennis clubs for under $25.
  • Tennis instruction is available through most county recreation programs AND for non-members at many local tennis clubs.
  • Tennis can be played as a family sport.
  • Tennis can be played on teams or casually on a Sunday afternoon with family members.


Hmmm…tennis sounds tempting, BUT what do I need to get my family started?

Using the reference information listed at the end of this article, choose what fits you and your family best.  First, choose a convenient public tennis court, and then select an affordable tennis instruction facility (no memberships needed), and lastly equipment. Richmond has a HUGE population of Novice Tennis Players!


In Richmond, you are never too old or too young to begin playing tennis! If you are a rusty-returning tennis player, perhaps even select a team option that fits your needs! There is nothing like match play to knock the rust off!

The great thing about tennis is that there truly is a place for everyone regardless of skill level or age. Join other Richmonders for some healthy tennis fun in 2016!

For general tennis information not listed in this article, please contact the Richmond Tennis Association at


TENNIS COURTS- Locate a public tennis court near your family. Use this link:


The facilities listed below offer a wide range of drop-in tennis clinics for members AND NON-MEMBERS of all ability levels. Drop-in clinics are a great way to dip your toes in the water if you are looking to get into the game.

NetPlay offers tennis instruction, upon request, onsite at local preschools and elementary schools. Contact Melissa Robinson at for more information.

Toddlers & Tennis – preschool enrichment classes, ages 3-5. Contact: Becky Holmes at and

SOUTHSIDE Facilities that offer tennis instruction:

ACAC- or 804-464-0980

Bon Air Community Assoc.- Contact

Midlothian Athletic Club (MAC)- 804.302.5156

Salisbury Country Club- to sign up for lessons or call 434-806-5035

Southampton- 804-887-0571

Willow Oaks Country Club- (804) 320-3244 or

Woodlake- or or 804-245-6011

WEST END Facilities that offer tennis instruction:

Henrico County Parks & Recs-

Kanawha Recreation Association-

Raintree- (804) 740-1035 or

Ridgetop Recreation Association- or 477-4720.

Three Chopt Recreation Association-

DOWNTOWN RICHMOND Facilities that offer tennis instruction:

City of Richmond Parks & Recs- contact Victor Rizzi at 646-1208 or

Metro Richmond Tennis Club (MRTC)-

VCU’s Mary and Frances Youth Center – Lobs & Lessons program


How do you know if a player is ready for “Team Tennis”? This is a very common question, but the answer is very simple. If a player can hit the ball back and forth “rally” three or more times, they are ready for team tennis! The standards are not supremely high because, for both the children and adult teams, players are separated by skill level. So if you are a beginner, you will play on a beginner team and against beginner players. If you are advanced, you will play against advanced players.

YOUTH Tennis Teams

USTA Jr. Team Tennis (JTT) brings kids together in teams to play singles, doubles and mixed doubles against other teams. It promotes social skills and important values by fostering a spirit of cooperation and unity, as well as individual self-growth.

Richmond has the second largest JTT league in Virginia. JTT is the largest youth tennis league in Richmond.

Ages 5-10 Contact league coordinator Lila LaCroix at

Ages 11-18 Contact league coordinator Kelley Glen

Richmond Jr. Suburban Tennis League (aka Bantam)

Bantam offers play for children ages 7-16 during the week for local club participants. Contact Beth Parrish at or

ADULT Tennis Team options:

FLEX: USTA Flex Leagues allow individuals to schedule matches when and where it’s most convenient. Players are divided by skill level. Local options include singles, doubles, mixed, and co-ed divisions, and players typically receive a 5-7 match schedule to be played over a two-month season. To learn more or to get registered, please visit Contact Helen Alli, League Coordinator for more information at

Men’s Racquetleague –

Formed back in the 1960’s, the Richmond Racquet League has provided an excellent platform of competition among all the tennis

facilities in the Richmond Metropolitan area. This is a Saturday morning men’s league that starts in April and ends (for teams

making the playoffs) in early July. There are divisions within the league that are developed based on each teams results.

USTA Teams- USTA league play is offered at all levels from complete beginner to NCAA Division 1 team graduates. All teams are separated by skill level. USTA offers many different leagues: singles, doubles, mixed etc.


Virginia Tennis Association – VTA organizes the Commonwealth League and WTT. WTT is tennis with all the fun without many restrictions. It is held year round. The Commonwealth league is doubles, mixed doubles and singles. VTA Leagues are both competitive and social Contact Cat DeSouza at

Women’s Daytime Suburban –  29 local recreation and tennis clubs participate in the Ladies Suburban daytime league. You must be a club member to participate. For more information, please check with your club.

To play tennis all you need is a racquet, balls, one other person and a court. For an adult, a racquet can be borrowed or purchased at any used equipment store. For a child, you should purchase equipment (or borrow) according to their size. A child’s racquet is the correct size for them if it can barely touch the floor when being held (held like it’s going to be used to hit a ball). If a child is under ten, they should not be using an adult ball. (red- under 9. orange- under 11) Most “super center” stores and tennis clubs carry inexpensive children’s racquets and colored balls for under $25.

Sassy Bee- tennis consignment clothing

Plaid Racquet- Racquets and clothing.

Play it Again Sports- Racquets

Tennis Clubs- most tennis clubs listed in the instruction section carry racquets and clothing. See clubs listed above.

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About the JTT, USTA Jr. Team Tennis (JTT) brings kids together in teams to play singles, doubles and mixed doubles against other teams. It promotes social skills and important values by fostering a spirit of cooperation and unity, as well as individual self-growth. Richmond has the second largest JTT league in Virginia. JTT is the largest youth tennis league in Richmond.