What does your life look like if you decide to go to America to combine sports and studies, something that is hard for many to imagine. Therefore, we would like to tell you a little more about this. For example, we previously wrote an article about one year in America as a field hockey player looks like, today we take you inside the life of a college tennis player.
Fons van Sambeek currently plays tennis for North Carolina State University. NC State is one of the larger schools in North Carolina where sports are also highly regarded. For example, the Wolfpack competes for Division I titles in several sports.
Fons is now studying in his sophomore year. Besides tennis, he is also studying psychology here. In this article, he takes you through his first year in America and what his experiences were. NC State is one of the larger schools in North Carolina where sports are highly valued. For example, the Wolfpack competes for Division I titles in several sports.
Want to know more about a year as a college tennis player? Read Fons’ story below!
The first semester starts already in mid-August but fortunately the city was not new to me. Raleigh was already familiar to me because I had been there to get used to admosphere and get myself ready for the semester. The players on the team actually became my best friends from day one. Thus, Collin Shick helped tremendously in getting used to and getting to know the school in the first weeks.” Told Fons about the beginning of his college tennis career.
The first semester
After a few days we started training and the classes also began. These first weeks the focus was mainly on the physical part of the game. That means that some tough weeks were ahead in which your condition is improved enormously. We trained so hard that in the beginning I was in bed every night at 8 p.m. The team spirit is so great, you can feel it from the very first training that it made the trainings really special. All the players have the same goals and want to achieve the maximum, for example we have a group that all want to become professional tennis players. Because of this, the trainings are always of a high level. It also ensures that everyone manages to go the extra mile during the physically demanding training sessions.
For college tennis, the season doesn’t actually start until Spring (the second semester/ from January), so there is plenty of time to get used to your school and the level, which is very nice. So the first semester is all about playing individual tournaments to build rhythm. ”The first weeks of classes definitely took some getting used to, the school system in America is really different. The classrooms are quite large and often completely full. Fortunately, I didn’t have to figure it all out on my own, my teammates and other teachers helped me right away.” To focus on tennis, it is also important to get good grades right away, that way when the season starts and things get busier in terms of tennis as well, you can pay more attention to it.
I came in at the same time as five other tennis players, with those five guys I also live together in a big apartment on campus. Apart from all the hard work on the court, Fons says he also has a great time off the court with his teammates. ”For example, I love watching the games of our American Football team. After all, they do play in the Fall semester and you can tell by everything that this is one of the most important sports in the country.”
The second semester
After Christmas break, during which most players always return home for a while, it is time for the second semester and the start of the college tennis season.
My second semester was all about the team matches. This is surely my favorite part of college tennis. You travel to other universities to play matches and also see a lot of the country through this, but the thing that makes it so much fun is that you really have to do it as a team. ”The atmosphere and the team feeling in these matches is so special. This is the time when people are fighting hard for the points and you want to finish as high as possible with the team!”
Fons’ team is coached by two former tennis players who have both played at a high level. ”As a group, therefore, we find that they can help us get better to eventually make it to the top. They were the biggest reason for me to go to NC State, and that still appears to have been one of my best choices. The level on our team is high both in singles and doubles, we are tested hard every day and it is super cool that everyone manages to give 100% every time. This is one of the reasons why I am having a great time and believe there are many great adventures to come at NC State.”
Right now, Fons’ team is busy making final preparations for the Spring season, then going out as a team to bang. Want to keep up with the results of NC State’s tennis team? Then be sure to check out @slamstox and @packmenstennis
Would you also like to play tennis and study in America? Then contact our tennis specialists quickly at this form. We are happy to help you!