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What teen athletes can learn from tennis

Coach Arden, Coach Joshua, Coach Geoff and Coach Antonio in the Philippines Source: AAsilo - MAC's CrankIt Foundation FB page

Tennis is a sport that teaches players important life skills.

Tennis became a teacher of life for Coach Joshua Irudayaraj, Coach Arden Asilo, Coach Geoff Asilo, and Coach Antonio Pereda. Along the process of their training to be better tennis players and now coaches, other aspects of their lives have also been refined, transforming them into responsible individuals capable of making sound choices in and advises about life.

MCTA's tennis players
(L-R) Coach Joshua, Coach Geoff and Coach Antonio (MAC's CrankIt Foundation FB page)

“The way I look at it now, it’s either you win or you learn – there’s no word as losing because you don’t really lose,” shared Coach Joshua as he recalled his moments of defeat in playing tennis.

Coach Joshua’s perception of losing as part of growing taught him to be realistic in life. He might be chasing for a career as a professional tennis player but he knew there should be something to fall back on – and for him, it is education.

“Balance tennis with school life, with your education. Don’t let tennis take over. Because if tennis fails, you have an education to back up on, at least,” Coach Joshua said.

MCTA's tennis players
MCTA's tennis players with Coach Pat, providing food and help to less-fortunate kids in the Philippines. (MAC's CrankIt Foundation website)
MCTA website

Education is highly valued by the team. These young coaches are also achievers themselves, doing well in school.

Coach Arden would soon move on to the next chapter of his life as a university student. He would be studying Exercise and Sports Science.

On this new journey, Coach Arden planned to focus more on his studies. But tennis would still be there as a tool for him to be fit and mentally prepared.

This sport would always be special to him: “It is a big part of my life. It made me the person that I am today because I’ve learned lessons not only in tennis but also in life. Tennis can teach you morals and values that you can apply in life.”

His younger brother, Coach Geoff, thought of doing professional tennis coaching someday: “I see myself as a professional coach traveling around places, helping sponsored players and just being there for the kids.”

This athlete who admitted to being emotional in his games enjoyed playing with one of the sponsored players of MAC's CrankIt Tennis Academy (MCTA), Johndy Velez. Connecting himself with young Filipino players back in the Philippines, he shared this piece of advice to them: “Learn from the experience of training yourself and [have] self-discipline.”

MCTA's Tennis Camp
Tennis Camp of MCTA (MAC's CrankIt FB page)

Coach Antonio, on his trip to the Philippines, had witnessed the hard work players put in this sport. It brought a positive impact on him: “It’s a nice feeling that people who wants it, really go for it.”

While being competitive and hardworking are important in tennis, he encouraged everyone to also enjoy the sport and have fun.

“Part of being competitive is also having fun as well. There’s balance between [that],” Coach Antonio shared.

MCTA's tennis players
(L-R) Coach Joshua, Coach Geoff and Coach Arden (MAC's CrankIt FB page)

One day, these young coaches would even create a big difference. When it happens in the future, what they wanted to be reminded of themselves today was that they have discipline and respect towards others, enough to help and inspire many, especially the less-fortunate ones.

The formula ‘Discipline + Respect = Inspiration’ goes a long way.  

Listen to the full interview

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