About RYDF - Please support the mission of RYDF in assisting young athletes from around the world with needed resources to achieve success both on and off the court, and to develop successful careers in sports and life. RYDF accomplishes this through three related programs:
Dream It – Fitness Forever Program - Empowers communities by providing opportunities for youth & families to experience fun, friendship, and lifetime health and fitness through participation in racquet sports.
Reach It – The Dream Team - Provides emerging professional racquet sport athletes with financial support, mentoring, and career development opportunities to achieve success on the court and in their life.
Live It – Athlete to Professional - Uses experts across disciplines to provide knowledge, skills, tools, and practices to improve performance, build a successful career on and off the court, and give back to the community.
There is a revival of junior racquetball happening in Northern California. The Stockton Junior Program, led by Jody Nance, John Ellis, and USA Head Coach Dave Ellis has flourished, with regular attendance in the 40’s on a weekly basis. Emerging from this success, with the help of the Reaching Your Dream Foundation, John and Dave have been working to establish junior programs in other areas throughout the Northern California region. In addition to Stockton, programs have been established in Fairfield, Modesto, Lodi, Antioch, Fresno, Merced, and Livermore. Other locations under development include Shingle Springs, Alameda, and Santa Rosa.
Phase I – The Presentation
1. Reasons for having a junior program;
2. Benefits of a junior program;
3. Components of a successful junior program.
Phase II – The Demonstration
This growth cannot be attained without adult volunteers, and Dave and John believe it is the personal connections they make that help convince people to volunteer their time and energy. Although materials and content for programming is important, the volunteer ultimately drives the success or failure of a program.
Phase I Outline
1. Reasons to have a Junior Racquetball Program
· Racquetball friendships often last for a lifetime;
· Friendships will be made with other juniors from all over the World;
· As an individual sport, friendships will be made with players of different backgrounds;
· Our sport encourages fitness among our youth;
· It is important that we all join in the fight against obesity.
· When there are junior players that love the game, parents will tend to join the club.
2. Benefits for Instructors and Parents Who Have a Junior Program
· If you teach racquetball, your game will improve. “You never really learn something until you teach it;”
· The positive feedback with the smiles, laughter, and remarks made by the juniors is priceless;
· The inner satisfaction that you are making a positive contribution to the welfare of children;
· New friends will be made among parents and volunteer staff members;
· Knowing that you will be helping to SOC – will be satisfying.
3. Elements of a Successful Program
· Support from club staff;
· Support from corporate;
· An employee that will regularly reserve courts at the designated times;
· Equipment to loan (e.g., racquets, eye guards);
· Keeping records of attendance and other data;
· Being able to find participants (i.e., relatives such as children, grandchildren, club members children and their friends, neighbors, etc.);
· Free trial period for juniors that are not club members;
· Creative instructors who prepare and are willing to pass on the sport that we love;
· Instructors that have passed the “Safe Sport” test at
· Instructors that have the three P’s: Preparation, Patience, and Positivity;
· At the end of Phase 1, eight racquets, six eye guards, and two dozen balls are left to the leaders.
If you are interested in starting a successful junior program at your club, please email John Ellis (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Dave Ellis (DAVEELLIS665@comcast.net). There would be no charge to have John and Dave consult with you and your club to work with you to establish a successful junior program.
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