Ping Pong Tournament – June 9th

Who: Aspen Hill Club Members and Guests (No guest fee)

What: AHC Ping Pong Tournament (Singles & Doubles)

When: Singles & Doubles, Sunday, June 9th, 12:00—4:00pm

Where: AHC East Lounge

 

Cost: $15/members per event, $20/guests per event Register in the Main Lobby.

All participants must arrive at least 15-minutes prior to the tournament start time.

Rules:

  • All games will be played to 21 points, win by two
  • The ball must be visible at all times during serves
  • Draw format—To Be Determined (dependent on number of participants)

Questions? Contact Terrance Scott at 301-598-5200 ext. 121 or terrance.scott@aspenhillclub.com.

 

Power Lifting & Personal Training Testimonial

By: Julie Marquette, AHC Member

Julie with her Personal Trainer, John Kecman

February 23rd was a very special day for me. I competed at the USA Virginia Novice Open, my 3rd official powerlifting competition. My squat was 120lbs, bench: 77lbs and deadlift 155lbs. It is exactly two years ago that I began my journey to better health and fitness. I’ve now lost close to 80lbs. Two years ago my wonderful big sis, Linda Zall Zeichner encouraged me to go to the Duke Diet and Fitness Center. The month that I spent there gave me the basic tools on how to live a healthier life. At The Aspen Hill Club, I randomly chose a trainer, John Kecman and it turned out to be the best choice I could have ever made. John has helped me to change my life in ways that I never could have imagined. In two years I’ve gone from being out of breath going up a flight of steps to being a competitive powerlifter. I no longer care about how small my body is but how strong it is. At age 62, for the first time in my life I feel in control of my body rather than my body being incontrol of me. I’d like to thank my family, friends and especially Coach John Kecman for all their support in the past two years. I couldn’t have done it without you!

 

Member Spotlight: “We All Do It Together!”

Sheila and Sunil joined the Aspen Hill Club about a year ago, but this was more of a “Welcome Home” then a first visit! Sheila began playing tennis at age 5-6 with her father and was a member of the Club in her teens while participating in tennis classes.  Sheila had taken a break from tennis, but when her
daughter, Lilliana, began showing interest in getting better—she knew just the spot to take her!

As a teenager, Sheila played on the high school varsity team at Blair High School and then played two years of varsity tennis at Division I UMBC. Sheila knows how much work it takes to work up to a high level of tennis and was careful not to push Lilliana too hard when it came to selecting tennis as her main sport, “I was secretly hoping Lilliana would choose tennis. It’s been great, she’s made so many friends at Aspen Hill.”

You can often find Sheila on the courts at the Club. Sheila takes part in Friday Night Doubles Frenzy, where she enjoys having fun and meeting new people in a social environment. “I’ve met so many great people, so many people that I would never have met without tennis!” Sheila explains. In addition, Sheila participates in Hit and Run classes with Ilan. Another highlight for Sheila was our “Battle of the Ages” event, where the junior players took on the adults. “That was so much fun. Some of these kids are so good!” she said.

As a professional in the healthcare field, Sheila knows the importance of being active. “There is so much to gain by being active, and there are so many options here,” explained Sheila. Sheila works as a Nurse Practitioner and is Board Certified in Family Practice. “Why would we just sit here while Lilliana plays tennis, there is too much to do.” Besides playing tennis, Sunil and Sheila love being active in the gym. “The interval training classes with Craig and Greg are awesome. Sid works us very hard in his RAW class, too.”  Sheila explains that “I’ve always believed why treat illness when you can prevent it. Stay active to be healthy!”

Since joining the Club last year, Lilliana has become an integral part of our junior program. She started last year in the Academy program and has advanced through hard work and determination. Lilliana started her competitive tennis journey with USTA Junior Team Tennis with friends from the Club. After being introduced to tennis competition, Lilliana’s desire to improve only grew. “Lilliana grew so much during the summer program. The tennis and skill level went up so much. Her attitude got so much better. Playing outside all day was great for her, and she loved it!” explained Sheila. Over the summer Liliana played almost everyday as part of our World Class program (now the High Performance program). In addition, she was a leader on our Junior Interclub team. “She has comradery here at The Club, and she loves it. Also, now she talks about high school tennis and she can’t wait for it,” gushed Sheila.

Unlike the ladies of the house, Sunil was not a tennis player. Sunil immediately made quick use of the Club to prepare for his 2018 hike to Base Camp at Mt. Everest. “Aspen Hill is where I did my indoor training. I hit that treadmill and did a 30% incline almost every day!” he explained. With his hike now complete, Sunil has decided to hit the tennis courts. He has been attending Jeff Klein’s beginner tennis drills along with several other parents of kids in Lilliana’s tennis class. “I enjoy trying new things. We are [the family] all here at the Club together and we are all finding ways to improve physically,” says Sunil.

The Mathew family is incredibly active at the Club, with at least one person visiting the club 5-6 days out of the week. They are using the offerings to push themselves at activities that they are strong at, but also finding ways to try new things to do. “It’s a great way to meet people! There is so much diversity at the Club, I’ve met so many people that I’d never run into otherwise. And that’s very important to me,” said Sheila.

Sheila, Sunil, and Lilliana—Thank you so much for adding to the lives of those around you. Your family helps so many by being warm and inviting to those that you meet! You have made a big impact to your fellow members at the Aspen Hill Club.

 

From Motivation to Inspiration to Dedication!

The Aspen Hill Club was the catalyst for a group of its members to eventually form a performing dance troupe dedicated to promoting an appreciation and celebration of world cultures through dance. What began as ballet classes at AHC, later evolved into a full-staged, performance dance troupe known as The Four Seasons Dancers. In its fifteenth year, the Four Seasons Dancers have impressed DC audiences with their complex choreography, colorful costumes and wide-ranging repertoire, with global influences that reach from Bollywood to Broadway, Israel to Ireland, Armenia to Uzbekistan and beyond, even to the Arctic.

The troupe’s artistic director-choreographer and AHC instructor, Elena Indrokova Jones graduated from a premier ballet school in her native Russia. She creates works in folk-inspired styles including gypsy, flamenco, polka, tarantella, mambo and more. The Four Seasons Dancers have participated in many community and corporate events and festivals including recent performances at the United Nations (NY), International Monetary Fund Spring Meetings (Washington, DC), Organization of American States (Washington, DC), The National Christmas Tree (Presidential Park, Washington, DC), Ike Leggett Legacy Forward Event (Strathmore Theatre, MD), International Festival (Bowie, MD), World Dance Showcase (PG County, MD), Bethesda Blues & Jazz Supper Club (Bethesda, MD), a benefit concert for hurricane victims of Puerto Rico and productions with Bel Cantanti Opera.

You, too, can enjoy the many dances they rehearse at AHC by attending their annual summer performance: Four Seasons Dancers present Dances of the World, Saturday, June 15, 2019 at 7:30pm at the Montgomery College Performing Arts Center, 7995 Georgia Avenue, Silver Spring, MD 20910. Tickets available for pre-sale and sold at the door. For tickets and info, visit: www.FourSeasonsDancers.com or email: 4SeasonsDancers@gmail.com.

 

Key to Success: Doubles Partners Traffic Pattern – April 2019

In order to be successful in doubles, it is very important for you to have great chemistry with your partner. There are certain traffic patterns some of the best doubles duos abide by between points to keep them both with a positive attitude and working together during the match. Here are the traffic patterns great teams do during every match.

Step 1: After the point is over, immediately make eye contact with your partner.

Step 2: Connect with each other with a high five or a fist pump. This step is extremely important after you or your partner looses a point or makes a stupid unforced error. Your roles as partners are to motivate and encourage one another all the way to the end of the match. If this step is skipped over, then your partner may think you are mad at them even if you are not as it is simply human nature for us to think that way.

Step 3: Walk your partner back to the baseline. During this time is when you discuss strategy and find out where your partner will be serving or returning the ball.

Step 4: Run up to the net in your position for the next point. By doing this, you set the tone as if you and your partner have a master plan and you are ready to execute it. There is also a bit of an intimidation factor in there as well. I’m sure everyone has seen Nadal jumping around during the coin toss along with his fast sprint to the baseline to get warmed up. There is a lot of gamesmanship there as he is sending a message to his opponent that he is ready to hustle for every point and you are in for a tough battle my friend.

If you want to watch all these steps played out to perfection, watch the Bryan brothers play a match and you will see them execute these steps between each point. It’s one of the things that make them the best. Keep on Playing!​

 

Member Spotlight: Eric’s Sweet Spot

Ever since Eric’s parents, Thu and David, left Vietnam 40 years ago they have lived in the United States working very hard to provide for their two sons. Language has been a barrier for them, but instilling hard work into the mindset of sons Eric and Austin has come from their sacrifices.

Eric entered his teen years knowing that his family had it tougher than others, but he also had a role model—his brother Austin. “Austin left for California for college, and he’s been on his own since,” explains Eric. During this time, when Eric was just entering his teen years and Austin was in college, Eric’s father was diagnosed with throat cancer. At the age of 13, while Eric was stressed about his father’s health and what he would do for college himself, he used tennis to distress. “I went to play tennis with my friends one day and I hit the sweet spot of the racket, and I loved it!

Eric became consumed with learning as much as he could about tennis, this included YouTube videos, endless Google searches, and anything else that those of us that are “Tennis Nerds” can relate to! “Tennis became my way of dealing with everything,” Eric explains, “It became my passion and also my distraction tool.

Eric’s mother saw her son’s attention to tennis and wanted to help him play more tennis. “My mom worked at the hospital with Susan Towe (AHC member). Susan told my mom information about junior tennis classes, such as prices, and we knew we couldn’t afford that” explained Eric.

When Susan figured out that cost was an issue, she made a decision that would alter Eric’s ability to get onto the tennis court, she gave the family information on Fred’s ACES. Eric has now been attending World Class Elite at Aspen Hill Club and is an integral part of the program; Tennis Director Terrance Scott explains,  “Eric is an incredibly hard worker who leads by example. Our program is better because of Eric.

Fred’s ACES is a 501c(3) scholarship fund set up in memory of longtime Aspen Hill Club member Fred Sommer. Fred’s ACES provides scholarship opportunities to kids, of all ages and levels, across Montgomery County that face obstacles when it comes to getting onto the tennis court. The funds have assisted over 50 kids ranging in age from 8-17 years old, fully funding their tennis classes at The Aspen Hill Club. “Fred’s ACES was a dream come true for me, it fundamentally changed my life” explains Eric.

Since picking up a racket at the age of 13, Eric has developed into a force on the tennis court. He is entering his third year on the high school team at Gaithersburg High School, where he has been Varsity Captain for three years. Last year Eric played #2 on the varsity team, “ What I love about tennis is the strategy that it takes and the need to analyze your opponent. Figuring things out on the fly is key in tennis.

Eric is in his senior year at Gaithersburg this year and is looking forward to attending the University of Pennsylvania on a full scholarship/financial aid package next year. When Eric had his interview with UPenn, he was able to select where his admissions interview would take place, this decision was easy for him. “My interview was at Aspen Hill. At Aspen Hill and though Fred’s ACES, I learned that there are good people out there that want to help. I am forever inspired.

Eric, thank you for adding so much to our tennis program at Aspen Hill Club. You have grown into a leader and your coaches at Aspen Hill are so proud of you and cannot wait to see the great contributions you’ll make in this world.

Aspen Hill Club Hosts Kids From Around The Nation

February brought an incredibly special event to The Aspen Hill Club—our Club and members served as hosts to the 2019 Winter Invitational. This special junior tennis tournament brought nearly 60 kids representing seven cities across the nation (DC, Boston, Dallas, Harlem, Philly, and Trenton) to learn and compete on and off the court. Each city sent USTA Local Excellence programs to the event.

USTA Excellence centers are designed to use tennis as a vehicle to educate and bring opportunities (on and off the court) to underserved youth. In addition to playing tennis at the Winter Invitational, players were treated to guest speakers including USTA National coaches, a college coach forum, and leadership skills and lessons by Win4Life.

To be a member of a USTA Excellence team, players must do much more than be strong players. Players must have at least a 3.0 GPA, conduct at least four community service events a year, complete a USTA NJTL Essay competition, and compete on local and national tennis events. While competing at the Winter Invitational, all players from across the country united and prepared over 200 lunches for the Montgomery County Coalition for the homeless – Home Builders Care Assessment Center (HBCAC) Men’s Emergency Shelter.

Former Aspen Hill member (and standout tennis player) Jeri Ingram had the idea to bring this event to a place that meant so much to her, “My dad  (Joe Ingram) was a member of Aspen Hill and brought me to summer camp when I was 9 years old, that’s where I met Vicki (my first coach) and Jeff Klein. Tennis changed my life and “if there was one person responsible for me enjoying the game of tennis and believing in my ability, it would be Jeff,” Jeri recalls. Bringing kids from across the country to the place where she began her tennis playing was incredibly special for Jeri, “I thought back to how many people helped me at Aspen Hill and at Springbrook High and I know it’s my obligation to reach others.”

Jeri played college tennis at the University of Maryland before playing pro tennis and having a world ranking. She returned to college after playing on the pro tour. Her career goal was to become a college athletic director, but after working with kids, she knew she had a different calling, she explains: “As I began working with kids that can’t afford tennis, I wanted to do more. The more kids I reach, the more I want to do.”

Jeri founded Metropolitan Tennis & Education Group six years ago to help kids have opportunities that they ordinarily wouldn’t, “It’s an awesome opportunity to teach kids and prepare them for college,” says Jeri. MTEF currently has 30 kids on their team, and “We have a GPA of 3.7,” boasts Jeri.

The 2019 Winter Invitational was a huge success. The kids played phenomenal tennis and were treated to learning from college tennis coaches. The kids had a blast and loved the facilities offered by The Club.  “We appreciate AHC hosting the event, because of community involvement events like this can happen. It’s a heavy lift and we need great support like we received from Aspen Hill” explained Jeri.

Aspen Hill was lucky to watch such great tennis and meet so many fabulous new faces!

Key to Success: Lob To The Backhand Side – March 2019

When stepping on the court to play a new player, the first thing you should identify is whether your opponent is left handed or right handed. This will help you identify where your lobs should be hit. By establishing this in the warm-up, there will be no indecision when it’s time for you to execute your lobs, because you have already identified where you need them to go before the beginning of the match. You are not always going to be able to hit the perfect topspin lob that lands deep, just inside the baseline. During a point, if you can hit your lob to your opponent’s backhand side and it falls a little short, usually that shot will not come back as your opponent will miss hit it. If your opponent is able to get the ball back, it will likely come back weak and you will have an opportunity to put the point away.

Most players can not hurt you from their backhand side. If you are just out there hitting lobs to your opponent’s forehand side, then your opponent will likely finish the point and you will not give yourself an opportunity to be successful. Play smart and hit your lobs to your opponent’s backhand side.

As always, Keep On Playing.

 

WILSON UNVEILS THE CLASH!

By: Tim Hahn, Owner, Aspen Hill Pro Shop

Wilson believes its new Clash has the potential to redefine the tennis racquet. The uniqueness of the frame lies in its blending of extreme flexibility with high-end stability. The success of the marriage stems from two new technologies. FreeFlex is a proprietary carbon mapping construction that allows the frame to bend in new dimensions—both horizontally and vertically—when compared to a traditional frame. This is designed to increase ball pocketing and dwell time for enhanced feel and control. But to preserve integrity through the swing on such a flexible racquet, StableSmart frame geometry allows the Clash to bend where its designed to, while still providing enough backbone to handle incoming pace and return it with interest. There are two frames in the initial launch: Clash 100 and Clash 100 Tour. Both have a 100 square-inch head, 16×19 string pattern and a constant 24.5 mm beam. The difference lies in the weight, an unstrung 100 checks in at 10.4oz while the 100 Tour is 10.9 oz. This racquet is best used by players who may have arm, elbow, or shoulder issues due to the flexible frame to provide comfort when hitting the ball. Stop by the Pro Shop, Tim and his staff will gladly assist you with your tennis needs and questions.