When it comes to USTA tennis in Southern California, Greg Bogie has run the gamut.
Over the years, the Los Angeles resident has found himself competing on all levels in SoCal. He played junior tournaments as a youngster, high school tennis, Tennis on Campus at UCLA, and currently participates in Adult Leagues and tournaments.
“I grew up in Southern California and know that this region is one of the strongest in the country in terms of tennis development,” says Bogie. “The consistent good weather as well as high level college tennis programs breed some amazing tennis athletes, and it’s great being a part of that.”
Bogie started playing regularly as a 12-year old, at the same time taking up basketball and soccer. His primary sport, however, was gymnastics. Though he was accomplished in the sport, he grew tired of it when he reached middle school age.
“I tried out a tennis camp with a friend and had a lot of fun,” Bogie remembers, “and I gradually made the switch to playing tennis… While tennis and gymnastics are fundamentally different sports, there is definitely carry-over in the fundamental movement patterns that are required to generate power to execute gymnastics skills. Balance and proprioception of the body during highly demanding movements is also something that definitely carried over into tennis."
As a teenager, Bogie played high school tennis but suffered a shoulder injury at the end of his senior year. Unsure of his athletic future, Bogie placed his stock in academics at UCLA. With varsity out of the picture, Bogie looked to club tennis and USTA Tennis on Campus.
“(I) showed up to the tryouts for the competitive club tennis team,” he recalls, “and found exactly what I was looking for. There are some really great players in club tennis and it’s a great way to socialize, stay active, and continue playing the sport. Tennis On Campus does a great job of facilitating competition with ridiculously fun regional and national tournaments.”
It turns out the shoulder injury was impactful in many ways. Aside from his introduction to TOC, Bogie also gained an appreciation for muscle development and physical therapy, which became his profession and explains why he uses words like "proprioception."
As a physical therapist, Bogie is quick to remind youngsters that competing in multiple sports at a young age is highly beneficial. “Early single-sport specialization can also lead to the development of overuse injuries without any time off throughout the year simply because these kids play consistently without adequate rest and without training into a diversity of movements. I personally had a lot of benefit from playing multiple sports as a kid and definitely recommend this for developing youth athletes.”
When not studying orthopedic and sports injuries, Bogie continues his tennis career through USTA Adult Tennis. The sport allows him to meet new people, extend his social circle, and maintain that competitive fire that was sparked as a youngster.
“Even though none of us are pro players and we’re essentially playing for fun,” Bogie says, “everyone wants to win and do well for their team. That kind of competition is very fun for me, along with getting to meet a lot of other people who also enjoy tennis.
“It’s always fun to hit with a friend and rally, but there’s nothing quite like playing in a match that counts for something.”
Visit our Adult Tennis section, featuring Greg Bogie in August, and follow our "This Is..." player profile series regularly at USTAsocal.com.