Squash and tennis might well be the widely played racquet sports but here’s your chance to try out padel tennis in Dubai, which is growing in popularity in the UAE.
Having only being founded in the 1970s in South America, the only way has been up ever since and that’s no surprise considering it combines tennis, squash and badminton for a perfect sociable workout.
The game is widely played in the US and Europe, particularly in Spain, and although it’s not as familiar as football, cricket or tennis, padel is picking up the pace in the UAE.
Padel Pro UAE are playing their part in popularising the game, having opened at Sportsmania in JLT in March this year.
“We only opened in March and the response has been really good,” said Carolina Gallo Frias, club director and head coach.
“We had a lot of players playing the game and although it’s the summer now and the facilities are still open, we expect many of them to return once they’ve come back from their holidays.”
It’s played in a doubles format with the court one third the size of a tennis court, which has walls at either end.
One big advantage of joining Padel Pro is that they organise matches on your behalf as well as offering coaching. A single 90-minute match costs Dh100 per player, while it’s Dh75 for one hour.
Packages are also available. Per player and for 90 minutes, five games costs Dh450, 10 games is Dh800, 15 games at Dh1,125 and 20 games priced at Dh1,400.
Private lessons start from Dh250 per session while semi-private classes range from Dh400 to Dh1,200. There’s even more reason for Emirates airlines platinum cardholders to play, as they can take advantage of a 30 per cent discount.
Whether you’ve played the game before or just want to try it out for the first time, Frias believes there are plenty of positives by playing.
“First of all, it’s a very easy sport to play and it’s very social,” she said. “If you’re someone who has just moved to Dubai and don’t have many hobbies, then this is a good way to meet new people.
“We also arrange games so you don’t need to know someone to play a game. As long as you know how to hit the ball and move, then that’s fine. We want them to have fun and it’s very easy to play.”
WHAT: Padel Tennis
WHERE: Sportsmania, Dubai
CONTACT: For information visit Padel Pro on Facebook or visit www.padelpro.ae
Put the pedal to the metal and test how fast your bike or car can go at Dubai Autodrome’s popular Track Days this month.
Since opening in 2004, the venue has become the home of UAE national motorsport, with the NGK Racing Series, the Clio Cup and the UAE Sportbike Championship just some of the races they have hosted previously.
And motoring enthusiasts can get a feel of what it’s like to be driving on the exact track. Giving the opportunity for drivers and riders to explore the performance of their own cars or bikes in a controlled and safe environment, it’s easy to see why it’s one of the most popular events on Dubai Autodrome’s calendar.
It’s also the perfect chance to experience the excitement of a race track without the constraints, restrictions and invariable risks that you would find on a public road in the UAE.
Whether you’re a rider or a driver, there are up to three track days to choose from, depending on your experience. For the bikes category, their August 4 and 25 sessions are open for advanced riders only, while the August 18 class is for novice and advanced level.
For cars, track days will be held on August 25 for advanced drivers, who can also attend on August 11, which is open to novices too.
Those who want to hit the track must either be in possession of a full driving licence and have taken part in a novice track day at Dubai Autodrome, hold a current competitions licence or show proof of a confirmation letter stating you have participated in track days at other motor clubs.
With safety hugely important, the sessions are run to strict international standards, with marshal’s posts manned, and safety trucks, ambulance and paramedic services all available throughout the event.
Riders must also wear full leathers and boots with compulsory measures on all bikes to have front facing lights which must be secured to the front. Wearing a helmet, which can be hired for Dh50, is also mandatory.
WHAT: Dubai Autodrome Track Days
WHERE: Dubai Autodrome
WHEN: Various dates this month
CONTACT: For more information on timings or to register in advance, visit www.dubaiautodrome.com
There’s still a few weeks to go until the new football season begins but with IFA Sport holding their camp, that’s no excuse for budding youngsters not to develop their game this summer.
Running until August 31 at AllStar Sports (Al Barsha) and Dubai Sports World (Dubai World Trade Centre), the camp has been a big hit and children aged between four to 16, can still join with places still available.
IFA Sport are no strangers to organising summer camps with their previous editions proving hugely popular and this year’s will be no different.
“We have had around 50 kids at each camp which is split into different age groups and each group has its own dedicated coach,” said Tommy Wingrove, technical director at IFA.
“Each day focuses on a different aspect of football with themes such as ‘Stay On The Ball’, ‘Control Possession’, ‘Take Your Chance’ and ‘Win the Ball’.
“The kids will then have the chance to test their skills in structured mini-tournaments. “They will also undertake a series of Skills Challenges, receiving comprehensive performance reviews at the end of the week.
“In addition to all the drills that we do, there’s always plenty of match time too.” The camp runs Sunday to Thursdays from 09:00 to 16:00 at both venues.
Parents can wish to enroll their children for either the half-day (09:00 to 12:00 or 13:00 to 16:00), which costs Dh125 per day or Dh500 per week, or the full-day (09:00 to 16:00) at Dh200 per day or Dh750 per week.
With the programme already in high demand, Wingrove has urged parents to register now for their children to learn from one of the best academies in the UAE.
“There are still some spots available but certain timings are already limited so get in touch fast,” he said. “With over a decade of experience in the region, IFA Sport is the largest grass roots independent sports academy in the UAE with a brand vision to help more kids get more out of sport.
“Our camps are designed to give players the opportunity to progressively develop their football skills in a fun and positive environment.
“During the five-day camps, players will learn about all areas of the game under the tutelage of the vastly experienced UEFA qualified coaching team. “It also offers a fantastic solution for kids to play in a fun and safe environment in Dubai.”
WHAT: IFA Sport Summer Camps
WHERE: Allstar Sports, Al Barsha and Dubai Sports World
WHEN: Now until August 31
CONTACT: For more information, visit go.ifasport.com/camp