Lisa Stone, founder of ParentingAces Podcast, is back to discuss what it’s like to be a parent of a high-achieving junior tennis player. Lisa’s son’s desire to play tennis at a high level was the inspiration for her website and podcast.
With so many years in the trenches of junior tennis, Lisa has seen some crazy things on the court. She tells us about one of those situations and also tells us what she’s learned over many years of hosting her podcast. !
Contact Parenting Aces Podcast host, Lisa Stone
You can contact Lisa by visiting her website at ParentingAces.
Here’s a complete transcript with Lisa:
Hi, this is Carolyn, and I’m here with Erin, and this is part two of our episode with Lisa from Parenting Aces. In part one, she gives a few tips for parents of tennis players, but here’s part two.
So, after 12 years correct, 12 years of doing your podcast, you must have learned a lot. So what have you learned from doing your podcast?
Well, let me just say that when I go back and I do do this periodically go back and listen to my very first episode. It’s so bad, it’s so cringy and what I mean. The main thing I learned and this just kind of came from the platforms that I was recording on and having access to this information was not to talk so much. Like you know, my podcast is like yours. I’m interviewing people. People aren’t tuning in to listen to me. They’re tuning in to hear my guest, so I need to ask my question and then zip it and let them talk and not interrupt. I tend to do that.
We do too. We do too.
I’m pointing at myself.
I tend to do that in my personal interactions too. My husband calls me out on it all the time, but it’s just. You know, it’s a learned skill. Right To get rid of the word whiskers and don’t talk over people and ask your questions succinctly and then be quiet and let the guest answer. I mean, those are like, from a technical standpoint, things that I’ve learned in terms of tennis knowledge. I mean, oh my gosh, I didn’t know what I didn’t know. And now I realize how much I didn’t know and still don’t know. And even after 12 seasons, every single time I interview somebody I learn something. So I think you know from a personal growth point of view, I’m 60 years old. I love that I still have this opportunity to learn weekend and week out from people who are way smarter than I am and way more experienced than I am.
Oh, that’s great, that’s actually why Carolyn started our podcast. It was originally her idea solely I just got into it because I can talk a lot, but she wanted to learn. Amazing at it, and she’s amazing at it she wanted to learn something new every day, and we do. We’ve done 200, almost 200 episodes and we’re still learning.
Yes, yeah, that’s great, okay. So, lisa, since you play tennis, what’s your most memorable moment on the court?
When you sent me this question, I started thinking I don’t have a lot of memorable moments as an adult player. Quite honestly, I just go out every day, is just fun, and I feel so lucky to have the opportunity to have the freedom to be on attendance court. You know, honestly, um league tennis is pretty big here in Southern California too, and so I’m on three or four teams at a time, depending on the time of year, and I’ve met some incredible women and you know my game has started to improve a little bit. But two moments jump out. One is back when I was 14 years old and in eighth grade, my doubles partner and I, because we attended a private school, we were allowed as eighth graders to play on the high school team. Our team went to state and my doubles partner and I won the state doubles championship as eighth graders.
Wait, what level are you? I know we’re not supposed to interrupt.
No, I was okay. My doubles partner was a nationally ranked player, so, um, yeah, made a big difference, um, but yeah, so that was huge and we got, you know, this trophy and we got all this recognition when we came back to school and it was really cool as an eighth grader to kind of accomplish that. Um, but recently actually two, three weeks ago now I had the opportunity to go hit with one of my dad’s former teammates from Tulane who is 87 years old and has been either one or two in the world in every senior age group. So this is a guy who knows how to play tennis really well. Um travels all over the world competing, still at 87, and he gave me a lesson and it was incredible. He completely changed my serve in 15 minutes and I actually used my new serve in a match this week. I didn’t double fault at all. So that was a huge gain for me and um, I yeah, it was just like kind of surreal to get a lesson from this guy who’s known me since I was born. He was in my parents’ wedding and, um, I hadn’t seen him in probably 45 years, you know. But turns out he lives 15 minutes up the road for me in SoCal now, so yeah that was pretty cool.
So not only are you learning new things every day with your podcast, but that’s the great thing about tennis is we can learn every single day. That’s why I never get up to up or two down, because I think I’ve got so many years to learn. You know, I just am just sort of even keeled. I’m like, eh, I’m just an infant when it comes to, like, my tennis knowledge. So that’s amazing.
And tennis connects people. Yeah, oh my gosh.
Yes, that’s the best part about it. Right, and and this is another thing that I tell parents when they’re just getting started in this journey they don’t burn any bridges, because everybody knows everybody. So don’t make anybody mad, you know. Don’t say anything negative about anybody, because it’s going to come back to bite you at some point. It may not be right away, maybe five years down the road, but it’s same with, like, the college recruiting, you know, if you’re talking to coaches as a player, don’t, you know, shut the door on anything, because you never know. And you’ve got to be really careful about protecting those relationships because, yeah, it’s very incestuous.
What’s your most memorable moment as a tennis parent?
I would say signing day for my son was a pretty big moment because he had worked so hard to get to that point. His high school was a very sports heavy high school, but football, baseball, not Tennessee now but his tennis team won the state championship his senior year. That was the first time the boys team had won state in like 13 years or something, and so that was a big moment. And then, you know, prior to that signing day was, you know, kind of the cherry on top.
I just went through that. It’s a proud moment, for sure it is. So I have another bonus question for you and you can say no to answering it, but I’m sure, because you’ve been in the junior tennis world for so long, I’m sure there were some crazy moments on the court. What was your craziest moment watching, not necessarily as a parent to your own child, but like what’s the craziest thing you saw in junior tennis?
Oh my gosh, I was at a national tournament this was after my son was done and I was there as media covering the event for parenting aces, and I saw the coach of one player and the father of another player get in each other’s face and hurling expletives right and left. The girls were having a battle on court, the two players and there were some questionable calls, some questionable behavior, and the officiating was also questionable. And the dad and the coach I mean they were about to throw punches and the tournament director had to come over and walk them out. The coach was local to the tournament site and was banned for a year from coming to any events at that tournament site, which was problematic because his player was a top player in the country and so to not be able to come and coach his player on site was not good. But yeah, that was pretty much the craziest thing. The girls were trying their best to just keep playing tennis. All this was going on, but they were having issues as well, so it got pretty ugly pretty quick.
You probably drew a crowd too.
Oh yeah, everybody had their cameras out. I mean, I videotaped it too, but I didn’t do anything with it. But I was like nobody’s going to believe me, I have to videotape this.
But in most tournaments is there no drama.
your experience with it.
There’s always drama. Oh okay, Come on.
I mean there’s drama for adult players. So I would think kids plus good players, good junior players with parents that drove it starts at the beginning.
I mean, I remember my son’s very first tournament and his coach had gone over the rules with both of us about how he was supposed to behave, what I couldn’t do on the sidelines, and it was the lowest level tournament. You know, it was 10 minutes away from our house, like it was a nothing tournament in terms of the hierarchy. There was a parent there coaching her child in a foreign language, which was against the rules. I reported it to the official. The official said well, there’s nothing we can do about it, and that was my intro to junior tournaments and I was like well, this is going to be a fun ride.
Yes, Is there anything we missed that you want people to know?
I would love people to know that I do one-on-one consultations with families at every stage of the junior and college recruiting process. So if your listeners would like to reach out, they can find me on our website, parentingacyscom, and there’s a contact tab there where they can reach out to me. But also all my contact information is there and I’m on all the socials so they can reach out to me via direct message any of those places as well. But I love working one-on-one with families. I love hearing the stories and helping these families kind of have a more positive journey through this crazy world of junior domestic college recruiting.
Thanks again to Lisa for coming on the podcast. We hope you check out our website, which is SecondServePodcastcom. Thanks so much for listening and hope to see you on the court soon.