When you first arrive to the Ross School Tennis Academy nestled in the countryside of East Hampton, NY, the grounds feel as though hallowed. It’s the premier athletic extension of the main campus, which since 1991 has offered a well-rounded education to its K-12 boarding school’s student body.
The educational hub’s motto, “Know Thyself in Order to Serve,” could take on multiple meanings in the context of tennis at the Academy run by Brazilian tennis pro and Volkl guru Vinicius Carmo. The student-athletes who take to the courts day in, day out show a commitment to education whether that’s on or off the court. But once they step onto the courts (right now housed in a pristine facility, starting with an elegantly simple entrance that has a Japanese-garden vibe), it’s a whole new ball game.
On fully display in the cases in the lobby are a couple of Volkl C10 Pro racquets, which bring an extra pop to the otherwise calm color palette seen throughout the space.
Now to the series of har-tru courts, filled corner to corner with groups of adults in the morning, and teens followed by junior players after their respective schools’ curriculum ends for the day; one of the junior players must have taken his school’s motto to the court, because he was serving aces left and right.
In the high-performance junior program, a few of the players tested out Volkl racquets with some showing an extreme interest in becoming part of the team. About 90 percent of the teaching pros – all of whom were former players themselves – gravitated toward the V8 Pro as that’s the stick they felt had the optimal balance of feel, power and control that they say they’d need for teaching as well as competing from time to time.
One of the academy’s star players,
Something Luanna does not mention in this interview are her passions off the court, which include cooking meals for her mom, dad and brother (also a Volkl player); her favorite dish to prepare for everyone at home is pasta with sausage.
A handful of other girls follow in the footsteps of Luanna, wanting to make the switch to Volkl from their current racquets or just a new version of what they already use. Either way, Luanna clearly has a powerful influence on her friends that leads them to also be believers in the Volkl Tennis brand.
Volkl Tennis welcomes Ross Tennis Academy into their family with open arms, and plans on collaborating on events at their facility this spring.