FREDERIC DEWITTE, Director
- World Top 150 ITF Junior Player
- Grand Slam Player
- NCAA Div. I Team Player : California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo (2008)
- BA International Affairs / Psychology
- Instruction Style: Multilingual Dynamic Flow with House Music Drops
- Native Languages: English, French, Japanese
- Inspirations: Kei Nishikori, Benoit Paire
- Playing Experience: Kei Nishikori, Benoit Paire
- Victory: VS Victor Troicki
In June 2011, we created Play Tennis!™ California with a vision to modernize access to superior quality tennis instruction with an online reservation system and five ocean breeze kissed San Diego bayside courts. We have today a vibrant and culturally diverse tennis community thriving with a perfect balance of competitiveness and kindness, granting the ideal atmosphere to identify and nurture the best player within you. With tennis club locations in La Jolla and Pacific Beach, we are just a short drive away from most any San Diego origin.
“I was born and raised for a decade in Club Med’s worldwide resorts.”
A bayside San Diego complex with five courts reminiscent of Club Med life is now our tennis academy’s home where students attend dynamic multilingual clinics with upbeat, inspirational house music! Music has been a significant aid in communicating timing and tempo related concepts. It is one of the most rewarding moments to see a student shed away their self-created limitations and bloom into the perfectly unique players they had, deep down, always known themselves to be. The tennis court has become a platform, a sanctuary where my worldview can transcend through to students that join me. That alone is reason enough to have started a tennis club in San Diego.
“I wish all students play free on the court so that they can be free off court.”
I’ve found through the evolution of my own tennis that intangibles such as positive thought, rhythm, confidence and spontaneous creativity tend to transfer seamlessly between the tennis court and one’s moment-to-moment life experience. I believe seeing the clarity of this analogy can unlock untapped potential on both fronts, in domino effect-like sequence.
Will you fearlessly attack the floating mid court ball or will you slice and retreat backwards? If you miss, will you slump your shoulders in regret or tune in to the innate adaptive intelligence of your body, constantly seeking a receptive ear to its optimistic messages? If you “miss” in life, what is your reaction? Through my Club Med lenses, the answer has always been to step forward, to dance, to laugh because tennis is fun and life is your vacation. You can capture the same mindset through Play Tennis!™ California tennis classes.
As I write, I’m humbled to have a group of students joining me for our first Club Med Tennis Vacation. From here onwards, we plan frequent trips with tennis lovers around the word with the ultimate goal of developing grassroots tennis initiatives for underprivileged children.
Talent can be hidden anywhere regardless of socioeconomic status. So can ambition – the kind that can take a player to the top of the world. Given my position, I consider it a social responsibility to create an environment where youth with such qualities are given a realistic chance be discovered and to flourish. I know this is exactly what I am here to do.
Frederic Dewitte, Director
play tennis! California
What’s Different About Us?
play tennis! California is not your typical tennis academy. How? Your instructor is a current world-touring professional tennis player on a comeback trail, ambitious to be the best he can be, just like you.
We blur the traditional separation between instructor and student with the understanding that this creates a potent environment for setting and reaching goals. We believe that we are all constant mutual learners. Even if your instructor happens to play the role of teacher, you as the student have much to teach the former through your views, strengths and weaknesses in the context of the game.
What does this mean, practically speaking? Frederic Dewitte trains you and also trains with you, regardless of your level. Together, we can amplify improvement by acting as mirrors for each others’ tennis.
By taking an active, participant role in your tennis, play tennis! California progressively shifts the paradigm of tennis instruction.
Through inquiry, we’ve come to find that tennis is simple if one lets it be.
It can seem like a maze to find your game; the way you are meant to play. Doing and thinking in ways that do not match your authenticity can create unnecessary friction in the expression of your tennis.
Tennis, as all forms of art, is an outward manifestation of your present experience on the court. To express yourself genuinely with no filter is the ultimate success as an artist, i.e. tennis player.
Paradoxically, nobody can teach you exactly how to play since you are completely unique in everything that you have been, are and wish to become. It is your responsibility to ask the questions and give the answers. Do not seek concrete concepts to grasp onto. Every ball you see traveling towards you will be different, calling for a completely original approach.
Observe outside stimuli such as “better” players and your general environment. Blend what you see into you. Interpret internally and release physically, externally. Adapt, evolve between every shot, point, game, set, match, tournament and season. Move forward.
The rules of tennis are clear. There are boundaries within which the ball must land and a minimum altitude that the ball must reach. Outside of this, your creativity should run wild with an understanding that there is no limit to how one should play. Never stop playing. Play with ball height, speed, spin, direction, the timing of when you do what you do. The possibilities never end. It is just play.
Your experience on the court is a microcosm of the external and internal structures within which or outside of which we live, with negatives, positives and resolutions bound by time, space and gravity. Through your development, you will see that these constants that you thought were immutable can be molded into various forms of art as expressed through the creativity in you.
Please let me know if you have any questions.