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FHSAA Tennis Senior Spotlight: Harry Michalowski



State Champion alas! He’s been working at it for the last four years and Lake Nona Senior, Harrison “Harry” Michalowski finally conquered that mountain.  

Michalowski was one of the top players that competed at the 2022 FHSAA Tennis State Tournament, and we had a chance to catch up with him after his monumental victory to talk about his tennis career thus far.  

Before becoming a state champ, Michalowski was just a young boy when he first picked up the tennis racket. The person responsible for introducing him to the sport 14 years ago, was his father, who also served as his first coach. 

When asked which person has been the most influential in his career, it was a no-brainer that he said his dad. “He’s been my coach for as long as I can remember, and we’ve gone back and forth on things, but we’ve always been together working.” 

Michalowski has soaked in a lot from his father throughout the years.

Another person who has helped develop his game is Roger Federer. Michalowski said that Fed is his favorite player and just by watching him, he’s learned a few things. “I try to keep it calm and collected as much as possible. It doesn’t always happen, but as much as I can, and I try to mimic his game just a little bit.” 

That combination of his dad’s influence and watching Federer, has paid off immensely. Michalowski led his high school team, Lake Nona, to their first State Championship in their history. On top of that, he also took home the Doubles Overall title with his partner Kartik Mandla.  

It wasn’t an easy road to his victories, but Michalowski has learned that you need to have mental toughness to overcome difficult times. “Losses are going to come, you’re going to lose matches. So, I think that’s something to remember,” Michalowski recalled. “Nobody’s perfect, and just being able to understand that and move on.”  

Using this mentality, he was able to rally his team, who he referred to as family. “I wouldn’t say we’re so much a team, but more of a family,” Michalowski explained. “We really got close as the season progressed, and I think that really helped us move through states.”  

Lake Nona’s Harrison Michalowski (right) won the 4A Team and Doubles Overall draw.

Not only did that chemistry help him, but the experience Michalowski had under his belt. Back in his freshman year, Lake Nona reached the state finals, but they were shut down by Miami Palmetto.  

Michalowski, with a smile on his face, talked about how sweet it was to get revenge on them in his final season. “We made state finals and lost [in 2019], so I wanted to come back and get the win.” 

While this marked the end of his high school career, Michalowski is reaching for the stars with his future. At this moment, he doesn’t know where he’s going to compete for his collegiate career. But, wherever he goes, he is confident that he will find success, just like he has for the last 14 years.  

 Check out the full interview


The post FHSAA Tennis Senior Spotlight: Harry Michalowski appeared first on USTA Florida.

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Four Fabulous (And Healthy) Prep-Ahead Smoothie Recipes




Today we’re sharing four fabulous, (mostly) vegan/dairy-free healthy smoothie recipes, all of which can be made ahead so you won’t be late for your tennis match or work, or wherever you need to be. Each one of these healthy AND delicious smoothies has no added sugar, which means no juice, no maple syrup, no honey…nada. Just the natural sweetness of the fruit in the smoothie!

Prepare the smoothies ahead of time:

You can use freezer bags, but mason jars are perfect since they are reusable. Jars do require more space in your freezer to store, and they collect frost faster, so it’s best to prepare the smoothies no more than 2 weeks prior to drinking them.

  • Place the frozen fruit chunks at the bottom, and follow with your add-ins: extracts, flax, chia seeds, spices, etc. are all totally fine to add in!
  • Top the jars with any greens like kale or spinach (great nutrition and fiber that you CAN’T taste!!), and seal with the jar lids.
  • NOTE:  DON’T use fresh fruit as any moisture will freeze the fruit to the jar itself, making it difficult to get out of the jars.
  • These smoothies will keep for about 2 weeks in the freezer.

The Tropical Turmeric Smoothie

This smoothie is PACKED full of anti-inflammatory promoting ingredients including the turmeric, pineapple and leafy green spinach (or kale). And you can’t taste the turmeric or the leafy greens, just pure tropical bliss! This makes a perfect post-match or post-workout treat as the anti-inflammatory properties help your body to recover more quickly.


Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Michelle Bell

Serves 1  |  Total calories: 305  |  Total protein: 5g  |  Total carbs: 49g


  • 1-1/4 cups almond milk
  • 1 cup kale or spinach, packed
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • pinch of black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1-1/2 cups frozen pineapple chunks


  1. Combine the first 5 ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.

  2. Add the pineapple chunks and blend again until completely smooth.

Blueberry Coconut Protein Smoothie

This smoothie is packed full of antioxidant rich blueberries, hydrating coconut water, and gets a boost of protein thanks to a scoop of hemp hearts. The blueberries, coconut water, nutty hemp hearts and greek yogurt pair perfectly together for a protein-packed post match/workout snack!


Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Michelle Bell

Serves 1  |  Total calories: 300  |  Total protein: 17g  |  Total carbs: 49g


  • 1 cup spinach, packed
  • 1 cup coconut water
  • 1/2 cup yogurt (full-fat plain or Greek)
  • 1-1/2 cups frozen blueberries
  • 1/4 teaspoon coconut extract
  • 1 tablespoon hemp hearts


  1. Combine the first three ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.
  2. Add the blueberries, coconut extract, and hemp hearts. Blend again until smooth.

Green Mango Antioxidant Smoothie

This smoothie is PACKED with superfoods: mango, spinach, chia seedsground flax…so many antioxidants in one drink! A touch of almond extract pairs surprisingly well with the mango and really takes the flavor up a notch. And a big YAY for the antioxidants! We want all the antioxidants we can get because they can lower the risk of cancer and fight against aging!


Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Michelle Bell

Serves 1  |  Total calories: 289  |  Total protein: 8g  |  Total carbs: 41g


  • 1 cup spinach, packed
  • 1-1/4 cups almond milk
  • 1-1/2 cups frozen ripe mango chunks
  • 1 teaspoon ground flax
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1/8 teaspoon almond extract


  1. Combine the spinach and almond milk in a blender and blend until smooth.

  2. Add the mango chunks, flax, chia seeds and almond extract. Blend again until smooth.

Goji Peach Cherry  “Good Night” Smoothie

Goji berriesare linked to a huge list of health benefits including longevity, calmness and improved sleep, and weight loss. Interestingly, cherries are a good source of melatonin and are linked to improved sleep as well. What a tasty way to get a good night’s sleep before your morning match!


Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Michelle Bell

Serves 1  |  Total calories: 229  |  Total protein: 6g  |  Total carbs: 36g


  • 1 cup spinach, packed
  • 1 1/4 cup almond milk
  • 1 cup frozen cherries
  • 1/2 cup frozen peach slices
  • 1 tablespoon goji berries


  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 teaspoon ground flax


  1. Combine the spinach and almond milk in a blender and blend until smooth.
  2. Add the cherries, peach slices, and goji berries. Blend again until smooth.


Goji berries can have some side effects, particularly with Warfarin and diabetes drugs, and should be avoided entirely if you’re pregnant.

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5 Tips To Neutralize A Net Rusher In Tennis




Rushing the net happens more often in doubles tennis, and occasionally you’ll come across a team in which not just one, but BOTH partners will not only serve and volley, but will also come in to the net with their returns. EVERY. FRICKIN. TIME.

Uuuuugh! It’s so frustrating! They move in to the net and mentally slap you with intimidation, putting you in defensive mode, forcing you to think fast and make a passing shot.

But DON’T FALL INTO THEIR TRAP. Only the very best volleyers cope well at the net, and even though they might seem they can handle it, the odds are strongly in your favor that they can’t. Matter of fact, sometimes this intimidation is merely masking some other weakness.

Don’t get me wrong, if you’ve got a solid ground stroke, you’ll get it by them a few times. But sooner or later (no doubt sooner), your opponent will be reading you like a cheap romance novel.

So what can you do?

You’ve gotta change up your game – and often. Call your opponent’s bluff and make her work for the point! These are some great things you can do (other than your passing shot) that will help neutralize your net rusher:

  • hit deep – keep your groundies low and close to the baseline, which will keep them back.
  • lob – force the net rusher back by lobbing over the head of the person already at net. Both players should then move back, which will allow you and your partner to take control of the net.
  • hit a dipper – using heavy topspin, hit a short return to the net rusher’s feet as she’s coming in, which will result in her hitting a shorter, higher and softer ball, thus setting up your passing shot.
  • get aggressive – give the net rusher a taste of her own medicine. As she’s coming in, hit the ball as hard as you can, keeping it low and aiming for her abdomen – and move in. At best she’ll only be able to block the ball back, setting up your passing shot.
  • mix it up – keep you opponent guessing by dishing out all of the above.

If you succeed in discouraging a net-rusher, you often find that all their ammunition miraculously disappears!

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Review: The Babolat Pure Strike 16 x 19 3rd Gen Tennis Racquet




I’ve been playing with the Babolat Pure Strike 16 x 19 3rd Gen Tennis Racquet for a month or so, and what sets the Babolat Pure Strike series apart from many others is its wide range of styles for all play levels. The Pure Strike 16 x 19 has an 11.4 oz strung weight and 98 in² head size, making it very appealing, indeed.

The Babolat Pure Strike 16 x 19 is perfect for all-court players who want a well-balanced tennis racquet that performs consistently across a wide range of strokes.

Babolat Technologies

Babolat’s Pure Strike 16 x 19 utilizes a number of key technologies that give tennis players a competitive boost on the court.


Babolat’s patented Woofer Technology is the first dynamic system that makes the frame and the strings interact when striking the ball, allowing for a more generous sweet spot, additional power, and less shock.

Hybrid Frame Construction

The frame uses square and elliptical shapes in strategic locations, offering a highly responsive blend of control and power with excellent feel and precision.

FSI Power

Babolat also uses its patented FSI Power technology to increase the spacing of the cross strings. This results in more power, spin, and comfort when striking the ball.

C2 Pure Feel

New to this 3rd generation racquet is a thin rubber material applied at the frame’s three and nine o’clock positions. This technology creates a softer, more dampened feel.

What I Love About the Babolat Pure Strike 16 x 19

Babolat Pure Strike review

Based on my evaluation, here area few of the Babolat Pure Strike 16 x 19 attributes I loved the most.


The Pure Strike 16 x 19 is easy to maneuver at 11.4 ounces and 327 swing weight, making it effortless to bring the racquet back for groundstrokes and transition for volleys at the net.


With its 98 in² head, the frame delivered plenty of power while its 16×19 string pattern helped produce crazy spin. Additionally, its flexible frame offered great control.


This highly maneuverable racquet delivered fantastic performance, especially when returning fast and deep serves that require you to react quickly and pull your racquet back fast.


The Pure Strike 16 x 19 is unique because it also maintains high marks up at the net with volleys. Its light weight makes bringing the racquet head up for a quick poach a breeze!

Who is it best suited for?

Me! I’m a 4.5+ player who plays a little on the aggressive side. The Pure Strike 98 is for advanced players who like to play aggressively and go on the attack. The high swing weight makes it more suitable for players ranked NTRP 4.0 or above.

You can purchase your very own Babolat Pure Strike 16 x 19 3rd Gen Racquet from Do It Tennis, or many other tennis retailers. And if you like my dampener with ‘tude, you can purchase it (and many other other styles) on Amazon!

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