Tennis in Costa Rica: The Ultimate Experience of "Pura Vida"
By Daniel Lopez Bustamante
When we hear about Latin America we think of beautiful natural landscapes and charismatic people; at the sports level, soccer is the most predominant, but what about tennis?
During the last decades, the tennis players have been mostly European and American athletes; we could think that it is a genetic or socioeconomic factor, but the truth is this is mostly a matter of opportunity. Olympians have shown that the Latin American region is full of incredible athletes, each struggling to excel in economies that do not have the resources to highlight the athletic talent of its people.
When Cliff Drysdale Tennis (CDT) had the option to expand its operations to Costa Rica, they accepted it with-out hesitation, because beyond extending its participation in this region, they had the opportunity to find new athletes and push their talents to the limit. Now, with more than two years of operation, we can affirm that Costa Rica is a country full of incredible athletes and with our junior programs we are going to mark a milestone in the history of Costa Rican tennis.
Seeing our young tennis players grow and instill in them a spirit of healthy competition is a feeling without equal; each of these players are exceptional in this sport and under the CDT philosophy they improve every day. We want to be that opportunity that helps turn the juniors of Santa Ana Country Club into the best athletes at the national level and in the near future, outstanding players from the region and the world.
They say that the greatest wealth of each country is its people and in Costa Rica there is no better way to describe its inhabitants than “Pura Vida”, a concept that means “pure life”. It is curious that this phrase has so many uses and, in the end, the same feeling of “good vibes”. This natural state of its people makes very enriching the experience of developing the talent of its young ones.
At CDT the main objective is to carry out the ultimate tennis experience in each of the clubs where we work, especially where junior programs are developed; a philosophy that when combined with this “Pura Vida” attitude of the Costa Ricans, it achieves unprecedented results.
In just two years, Santa Ana Country Club has become the most outstanding academy in the country, with the top ranked junior players in the country from all ages. We are just getting started and there is still a long way to go, but by combining CDT’s international experience and the incredible talent that Costa Rica has, very soon we will be regional references in this sport.
As a Latin American tennis player, I know what it feels like to be in constant search of opportunities, which is why I feel a special commitment to the young people that I train today. That is why CDT, Santa Ana Country Club and myself are on a collective mission to train the best generation of junior tennis players in Costa Rica.