Health and wellness are at the forefront of our minds these days. Especially as the dark days of winter keep us inside, it can be difficult to maintain the level of fitness that we’d like. Luckily, that’s where Bellingham Tennis and Training Club comes in.
Robin Robertson, owner and manager of the club, is passionate about ensuring it’s a safe place to enjoy classes, clinics, and more. She’s helped the club expand their offerings to include virtual sessions as well as COVID-compliant indoor activities.
Bellingham Training and Tennis offers 4-, 8-, and 16-week strength, cycle, and tennis clinics. Each clinic offers something different; for example, there are a few for those looking to get back into their fitness journey after some time away, or even start for the first time. On the other hand, there are plenty of options for those who have an already established practice and are excited about building on their strong foundation.
“Our newest 4-week strength clinic is Back to Basics, starting February 2,” Robertson says. “It’s a weight training program to coach people with the basic elements of each move and how to use good form with a progressive plan to get started again. It meets twice a week, so there’s enough work being done to stimulate change and help prevent injury, which is what we all want right now. It’s geared towards the person who wants a refresher or first timers who want to become confident with using weights.
Eight-week tennis clinics at the club give beginners a chance to learn new skills and experts an opportunity to build on their talents. Bellingham Training and Tennis Club offers clinics for kids, as well, who get a chance to have fun while taking care of their bodies and discovering their abilities. The clinics offer different levels of play for different age groups.
“We start these clinics at age five, and they play with a red ball that’s a bigger, slower moving ball than your typical yellow one,” says Robertson. “It’s the same kind of bounce, but they play on a half court with a net that’s more their size. It’s pretty cute.” The levels progress to an orange ball for slightly older players with a mini-court, and then green ball and the regular yellow ball on the standard-size court.
Robertson is particularly proud of the club’s elite junior program. To get into the program, young athletes must be recommended by one of the coaches. “Almost all of the kids who come through our program end up state bound for tennis tournaments. It gives them an upper edge for competition. A lot of high school coaches don’t have the time, so when kids work with our coaches, they’re learning skills and strategies as well as the mental toughness of being on court and in competition, which is a huge factor in their success.”
The club also offers adult clinics, ranging from beginners to more competitive levels of play. “We just want to get racquets in the hands of people so they can have fun and learn skills!” Robertson says.
Switching gears, people can also have fun and learn skills in the club’s stationary bike Cycle Moles clinic, an 8-week program now offered via Zoom that helps participants increase stamina, lower resting heart rates, and be able to ride with more skill and less effort outside because of the training they’re doing inside. “This program is geared towards people who want to be better cyclists, but is also great cross-training for any athlete” says Robertson.
The Healthy Knees Formula 16-week online training program was developed by Robertson based on the in-club programs she’s run for years. It provides week-by-week videos for clients to follow at home with a focus on strength training, stationary cycling, and creating good habits. “We also added weekly mindset and fuel videos to help people with topics like positive mental attitude and nutrition,” which Robertson says helps create a well-rounded program. The Healthy Knees Program will start again on March 1st.
Safety and health have always been at the heart of Bellingham Training and Tennis’ work, and now more so than ever. To exercise at the Club, you must make a reservation so that capacity limits are easily regulated. There is a max of five people per gym area and in fitness classes and clinics. Six per instructor are permitted on each tennis court. Masks are required 100% of the time, and the club is cleaned regularly by staff to surpass state guidelines. They also installed a new HVAC system, giving the building exceptional airflow.
No matter which activity you do, it’s important to maintain fitness both for physical and mental health. “Fitness is kind of like brushing your teeth. You have to do it on a regular, consistent basis to get the benefits from it,” Robertson says. “It’s not just about your body, either; it’s about your mind. Having that stress relief through exercise is one of the best things we can do for ourselves right now.”
Taking care of your body and mind through consistent exercise can be a great part of your day and at the Bellingham Training and Tennis Club, it’s something to look forward to and enjoy.