Punahou’s after-school tennis players have been creatively practicing at home to keep up their games. While some have set up nets in their front yards, others are whacking balls in their driveways. Some even are playing indoors, bouncing balls off walls of their rooms.
“It’s going well with our after-school tennis programs,” said Ikaika Jobe ’01, director of tennis. “It’s our first time offering tennis classes remotely, so we’re quickly learning and adapting as we go.”
Students practice on their own and also meet twice a week with the entire group over Webex.
“I think the students like to see that we are doing the activities with them,” Jobe said. “We feel the synchronous classes are engaging and motivating for the students. We’ve also found that allowing the students to leave their microphones on during the activities provides a more interactive environment. The classes are much smaller than normal, but it’s fulfilling to see the students moving and exercising, knowing that they’ve been sitting in front of a screen most of the day.”
Monica Chan, whose son Kenton practices indoors, said they never would have imagined playing tennis indoors before this year. “We appreciate the creativity and resilience of the Punahou staff,” she said.
When it is safe to return to Punahou’s Dillingham Tennis Complex, players will enjoy upgraded facilities. The courts were recently resurfaced with Laykold, the same high-tech surface used at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, where the U.S. Open is played.