Joanne Heath says she plans to hit the tennis courts in Central Saanich every day since they reopened last week. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)

Saanich Peninsula tennis players get back into the swing of things

Courts across Greater Victoria have reopened over the past week

If running was the sport of choice during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, tennis is among the early candidates to experience a boom as the province lifts restrictions.

It is easy to see why officials would allow outdoor tennis courts to be among the first recreation facilities to open. Tennis not only allows individuals to exercise outdoors, but the very nature of the game creates physical distance between players. This is not the case for other sports such as soccer and hockey. Players of those sports will likely see their patience tested for the foreseeable future.

Tennis courts across Greater Victoria including on the Saanich Peninsula have been the among the first recreation facilities to reopen.

The Capital Regional District opened the outdoor tennis courts and outdoor basketball courts at Panorama Recreation Centre in North Saanich and Greenglade Community Centre on May 14. North Saanich reopened its pickleball and tennis courts at Wain Road Park on May 19. Central Saanich reopened its various outdoor courts on May 15. Outdoor tennis courts have also reopened in Victoria, Saanich and Oak Bay among other communities.

This opening serves Joanne Heath just fine as she was spending part of her Tuesday morning hitting balls at Central Saanich’s Centennial Park. It was her first time on a real court in at least two months.

“It’s wonderful,” she said as she picks up the tennis balls lying scattered across the court. One court over, four women were wrapping up their doubles games. “It has been a long time. It feels like forever. It’s lovely.”

When Heath could not hit the courts during the peak of the pandemic, she practised off a school wall. “But that doesn’t compare to actually being on the court,” she said. During the past few weeks, she has also been following the news to see when the provincial government, specifically provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry, might give the go-ahead. “Is she going to talk about tennis? Is she going to talk about opening up parks again? So that was a huge focus. Tennis is really important for me.”

RELATED: COVID-19 has given running a boost

Heath started playing tennis when she was child, then stopped for many years as she raised her children, only to resume playing about 15 years ago.

“That is my life, tennis,” she said. Heath not only missed the physical activity, but also the social aspect. “You have a lot of extra time on your hand. What do I do?”

During her forced time away from the court, Heath found herself moving back to Central Saanich from Pender Island. “And I was staying with my son and his wife, and they have a four-year-old and an 18-month-old. So I was grandma. I was on duty. So yeah, it is lovely to get out here, as much as I love my grandchildren.”

Tuesday morning was not without its frustrations. “First time out, I expected it to be perfect,” she said. “It’s not, which is a little upsetting. But I will be back every day from now on.”


Like us on Facebook and follow @wolfgang_depner

wolfgang.depner@peninsulanewsreview.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Greater Victoria housing market sees positive bump in June

Sales up by 76.8 per cent compared to May

Owners say loss of parking pushes businesses to the brink

New Penny Farthing patio ‘will be like New Orleans, or Las Vegas’

Saanich plugs into $100,000 government grant for 20 new EV chargers

Six chargers to be installed at four municipal parks

Saanich woman says sexual assault was dismissed by police because of her ‘body language’

Patrol officers investigate sexual assault files, make decisions on what goes to Crown counsel

‘Tarantula moth’ spotted in broad daylight in Victoria

Polyphemus moths are one of the largest insects in B.C.

All community COVID-19 outbreaks declared over in B.C.

Abbotsford manufacturer cleared by Dr. Bonnie Henry

B.C. First Nations vow to keep fighting after Trans Mountain pipeline appeal denied

Squamish Nation, Tsleil-Waututh Nation and Coldwater Indian Band made the application

‘Queue jumpers’ not welcome in B.C. as COVID-19 U.S. cases rise: Horgan

Premier Horgan said he’s heard concerns that Americans have stopped at Vancouver hotels instead of heading to their destination

Playing his tune

Musician Daniel Morel breaks out a tune with his harmonica in front… Continue reading

US officer resigns after photos, connected to death of black man in 2019, surface

Elijah McClain died, last summer, after police placed him in a chokehold

Black worker files discrimination complaint against Facebook

Oscar Veneszee, Jr. has worked as an operations program manager at Facebook since 2017

Nestle Canada selling bottled water business to local family-owned company

The Pure Life bottled water business is being sold to Ice River Springs

Major B.C. salmon farm tests new containment system to curb sea lice infestations

System “essentially eliminates” contact between wild and farmed fish stocks, says Cermaq

Most Read