UMass Dartmouth coach new owner of tennis club
When he was four years old, Karsten Rathlev’s father handed him a tennis racket and taught him to play the game. Since then, Rathlev’s commitment to the sport has been unwavering.
He won three state tennis championships at Winchester High School and continued to prosper at the collegiate level while studying English Literature at UMass Dartmouth. Rathlev later became the head coach of the UMass Dartmouth Men’s Tennis team.
Now, he’s taking on a new role: the owner of Marion Indoor Tennis.
“I’ve always dreamed of owning my own tennis club,” said Rathlev. “Now that it has come to fruition, it’s very exciting.”
Rathlev, 28, began working at the club seven years ago as an assistant professional while he was finishing his bachelor’s degree.
“I feel I am able to use tennis as a platform to help players,” said Rathlev. “To become not only better athletes or tennis players, but also to become better people.”
Rathlev aims to provide residents of all ages and skill levels the opportunity to learn and play tennis.
He hopes to add more interactive teaching methods to the programs offered at the club, which are designed to teach more than just the basics of tennis.
Some important elements of the game, he says, are often lost on younger American players because they are not always taught thoroughly.
“I think I bring a fresh, young perspective to the club,” said Rathlev. “I have so many ideas, but it is going to take some time.”
Rathlev said one of his goals is to bring more high-level tennis to the club. He suggested, for example, that he could invite skilled players from around the New England area to help teach clinics at Marion Indoor Tennis.
“I’m here to stay for the long haul,” said Rathlev. “I’m here to run a good business and I’m here to make the future of American tennis happen.”
The club, located at 26 Luce Ave. in Marion, is open to all members in the community and recently added new Pro-Cushion courts, nets, and backdrops.