LAKE NONA, Fla. - The United States Tennis Association and Wounded Warrior Project teamed up to teach adaptive tennis to wounded veterans at UTSA’s Lake Nona facility.
Fifteen wounded veterans from around the country, including veterans from Georgia, North Carolina and Pennsylvania, and their families came together Wednesday and Thursday to learn how to play tennis.
Army Veteran Cassie Leonard said it was her first attempt at getting back active after she broke her foot while serving in Afghanistan. She spent 18 months in rehab.
“Now I have arthritis so I have back injuries and issues with my knees and everything else. I got very lucky that is was only a foot that I broke but you know, I have a 13 year old son so it’s been really difficult being active with him.”
Leonard said learning the new sport was empowering and gives her newfound hope for the future.
“My son’s over there playing tennis, learning how to play and I’m learning how to play. Now we can go together and he’s excited to start maybe some lessons we can continue on.”
Wounded Warrior Project and UTSA hope to set veterans up with local adaptive tennis programs after the clinic and host similar camps in the future in order to introduce more wounded veterans to the sport.