‘So,’ you may be wondering, ‘who is that instructor teaching kids to play tennis at the handball courts on 48th Avenue and 5th Street in Long Island City?’ His name is Joseph Orlic and he’s been coaching kids in that location since 2014. He originally came to LIC at the request of a local parent who discovered him in another program, and since then his practice has spread solely through word-of-mouth and those stopping by to inquire.
Teaching tennis is a hobby for Joseph. Born in Croatia and raised in Astoria, he is retired from a career first as an engineer working for contractors in the defense industry, and then starting in the 90’s as a director of information technology designing networks and managing teams at new online companies (before they were called start-ups) and financial firms including the NYSE.
Unlike his pupils, Joseph came to the game much later in life, starting in his late 20’s. He taught himself how to play and like many converts became a zealot of the game (aka tennis buff). He then took the next step of an evangelist and learned how to train and coach others, motivated by the belief that tennis is a great way to be active both physically and mentally, and is also a game that can be enjoyed by all ages and levels and well into life, even ones 80’s and 90’s. Which is why he so greatly enjoys introducing kids to the game.
Joseph is trained in quick-start tennis, which incorporates the realization that most kids come into the game uncoordinated. As a late starter himself he understands that the technique is not innate and knows how to overcome the hurdles to achieve a serviceable game. Furthermore his methodology recognizes that some people learn verbally and others visually.
Depending on the child, Joseph believes the earliest age to begin learning tennis is between 3.5 and 4 years. Yet despite the apparent focus on youth he also trains older children and adults, both in the location mentioned above and at the courts in Astoria Park. Though he has a pretty full roster this Spring, you can reach Joseph by email at email@example.com
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