While some of his close friends on the World Racquetball Tour headed to New Jersey for the International Racquetball Tour’s New Jersey Open, Alex Cardona headed to the West Coast to take help RYDF raise some money by participating in our “Season of Giving” event. Undoubtedly, Alex Cardona would have relished an opportunity to join his friends, but traveling to California provided him an opportunity for unique experience for a professional racquetball player.
Alex, who’s birth name is Alejandro, is a promising young professional racquetball player from Juarez, Mexico. At age 23, he is currently the #1 player on the relatively new WRT. His engagement with the tour over the last 2 plus years, has helped restore his commitment to the sport. His continued participation in our sport is truly meaningful when you take certain things into account. Cardona had a prolific career as a junior. He has 7 World Singles titles and 10 World Doubles titles. Though after such a notable run as a junior, he basically had to give up the sport at the age of 19 because he just didn’t have the resources to move forward as a professional. It wasn’t until age 21, that the opportunity for professional play presented itself again through the WRT. And two years after returning to the game, he has established himself as a formidable professional.
In addition to finding a renewed life in his racquetball career, Cardona is finding an ever increasing value in his experience as a professional. He’s engaging in situations that allows him to affect others in positive ways. Cardona, along with many other young professionals we are working with here at RYDF, is benefiting from the programming we are facilitating, that is working to formalize and expand the learning and giving opportunities for growth that are comprehensively present in the experience of playing professional racquetball.
His week in California provided for a diverse immersive experience. Alex was able to connect with other, mainly spanish speaking enthusiasts at City Sports in San Jose, California, were he was engaging players with a racquetball clinic. There were a number of players that had the experience of having a professional give the instruction and provide them with an example of the good racquetball can do, both physically and personally. He then teamed up with Bobby Horn to take some time helping some youths in Pleasanton, California learn how to keep fit. And during our “Season of Giving” tournament in Concord, California, he was able to help RYDF significantly with our benefit driven event. In all of these days, Cardona was working and learning how to better communicate, facilitate and see himself as a professional. (He also had the fun experience of attending his first ever professional basketball game at Oracle Arena. For someone from Juarez, Mexico, who thought his career was over, found that his experience opened the door to seeing something he will never forget. We know he had a blast.)
Alex Cardona is a gracious young man and a promising young professional racquetball player. We know there is a deep routed value in our sport that transcends just playing the game. We know that engaging players like Alex, where they can make the most difference, can be life changing. We are committed to Alex and players like him, who are understanding more and more that there is more to our sport, than just having fun playing and competing professionally. It’s a life experience, where the season of giving, is always in season.
Please consider partnering up with RYDF to help us continue our commitment to recognizing the value and potential inherent in professional racquetball.