Junior coaches tennis at Courtside

March 29, 2019 — by Megan Chen and Jayne Zhou

Three days a week for an average of two hours, junior Katie Lam isn’t do her exhausting AP US history reading or her extensive AP Biology homework; instead, she teaches younger children how to play the sport she loves: tennis.

Lam recently started coaching tennis at Bay Club Courtside, where she has been training since t age 5; she represents Courtside in the USTA NorCal Junior Team, playing for them every summer since she was 7.

For Lam, it was easy to get the job because of her familiarity with the club. They didn’t require an application and simply asked her to coach their younger teams.

During the three weekly sessions, Lam works with students from ages 3 to 6 and 8 to 12. On Mondays, she teaches one-hour sessions, and on Tuesdays and Thursdays, she teaches two-hour and forty-minute sessions. She mostly teaches forehands and backhands, but depending on age and skill, she also has students serve and play for points.

“My favorite part is teaching the kids that don’t know how to play, especially the really little ones, and when they get it, it’s really rewarding,” Lam said.

Her passion for coaching younger students sprung from being taught by high school students herself.

“When I was younger, there were always high school coaches alongside the regular coaches, so I knew that was something I wanted to do when I grew up,” said Lam.

The hardest part of coaching as a student is balancing school and work, Lam said. However, the block schedule helps her maintain a balanced schedule because she is able to get her homework done a day early.

According to Lam, the work is worth the sacrifices involved.

“I just remember that once you’re there enough, you are able to build this bond with the kids,” Lam said. “They actually remember you and things about you, and that makes it very rewarding.”