I had learned to run by taking long, extended strides. Now, as a result, and even after hundreds of hours with Kirill, I still cannot roam the baseline and routinely get myself in the proper relation to a tennis ball to strike it at just the right arm’s length. It’s a lesson in why you read about pro tennis players who have been playing since age 6. It’s a lesson, too, in limitations.

To determine who serves first, you flip a coin or (more likely) spin a racket. Whoever wins the toss gets to decide one of four things: that she wants to serve first, that she wants to receive first, which side of the court she wants to start on (in which case, the opponent chooses who serves first), or that she wants to leave the choices up to her opponent.


Tennis is an Olympic sport and is played at all levels of society and at all ages. The sport can be played by anyone who can hold a racket, including wheelchair users. The modern game of tennis originated in Birmingham, England, in the late 19th century as lawn tennis.[1] It had close connections both to various field (lawn) games such as croquet and bowls as well as to the older racket sport today called real tennis. During most of the 19th century, in fact, the term tennis referred to real tennis, not lawn tennis.
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