Only one tournament in February? What's going on?!
I was fortunate to have a bit more downtime this month, but don’t worry, I used in constructively! I found a new affinity for group workout classes including Cyclebar, Orange Theory Fitness, and Hot Yoga. Needless to say, I’m one of the few guys there!
I was able to attend several of Jenny’s Miss Wisconsin appearances, we celebrated her birthday, and we celebrated Valentine’s Day. I’m sure she’s ready for me to play more tournaments again!
My team and I also started producing TikToks! Make sure to check me out on TikTok @ZaneNavratilPickleball for mind-numbing pickleball entertainment. Check it out here, you won’t regret it!
Finally, I played in the APP Punta Gorda Open on the last weekend in February and took 4th in mixed with Maggie Remynse, 5th in mens with Altaf Merchant, and 2nd in singles!
This month the APP Tour announced that they will be holding the first pickleball tournament at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, which is the site of tennis’ US Open! I went to the US Open in 2009 when I was 13. I dreamed of competing there, and now I get to make that dream come true with a pickleball paddle! This is an incredible announcement for the sport of pickleball!
Sara joined Zane’s team in the spring of 2021 and is primarily responsible for clinic coordination, website management, and pretty much anything else that will take tasks off of Zane’s todo list. She lives in Austin, TX with her two teenage boys and has been playing pickleball recreationally for 5+ years. With prior careers as an accountant, therapist, photographer and stay-at-home mom, it somehow made sense to add sports management to the list!
There are plenty of options available to take pickleball lessons, attend clinics, and watch content on YouTube. As the new director of the APP Academy, I believe we are offering a unique learning opportunity when compared to most. Our clinics are divided by distinct skill levels (3.0, 3.5 & 4.0+), we limit our student to teacher ratio at 8:1, and every participant is given personal attention and distinct feedback from the pros.
Here’s what others had to say about recent clinics: “the clinic flowed very smoothly; I liked practicing with the pros; I appreciated the clear description of the stroke/shot and the logic behind why it works; drills matched the skill level; good variety of helpful tips in short period of time; Zane had a down to earth teaching style.”
Registration is now open for these upcoming APP Academy clinics:
- Plantation, FL – Monday, March 7
- Delray Beach, FL – Monday, March 21
- Mesa, AZ – Monday, April 4
- Camden, SC – Monday, April 18
- Long Island, NY – Monday, May 30
TOUCH THE FENCE
I have no “chill” in me. In tennis, I played points very, very fast. As soon as one point ended, I would get up to the line quickly and start the next point. I’m not a patient person. However, I have come to realize that this pace does not serve me well in pickleball. When I play fast, I don’t fully process what just happened in the last point, and I have trouble focusing on the next point. If you’ve ever watched me play, you’ll notice that I head back to the fence and tap my paddle to the fence after every point. This is a way of slowing myself down. On the walk back to the fence, I process what just happened in the last point. Maybe the opponent hit a big forehand drive, telling me to keep the ball out of that spot. After I’ve tapped my paddle, I stop thinking about the last point, and reset my focus to the next. This is a very simple yet effective way to pace yourself and play better pickleball!