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Its a fact that tennis is good for you

Jim McCauley, of the Home Builders Association, opposes the proposed System Development Charges fee increases. He bases his opinion, in part, on the notion that tennis is an 'elite recreational option.'. Nothing could be further from the truth.

There is nothing elitist about tennis. It's a sport for all ages and abilities that can be played for a lifetime. An investment of $30 for a tennis racquet can provide unlimited hours of free tennis at our local outdoor courts. The cost of reserving an hour of indoor court time for a doubles match is less than the cost of the latte you'll enjoy afterwards. Tennis only becomes elitist when you have a shortage of facilities available to meet the needs of your community.

Consider these facts:

Fact: Approximately 10 percent of U.S. population plays tennis.

Fact: Of the 114 traditional sports tracked, only 3 sports have shown overall growth this decade: football, golf and tennis. Tennis, however, has grown more than 5 times that of football and golf.

Fact: The Lake Oswego Indoor Tennis Center is not able to meet the community's current demand for court time, and more important, has not been able to meet the demand for the past 20 years.

Fact: Playing tennis has numerous health benefits; both physical and psychological.

Fact: People who participate in tennis 3 hours per week cut their risk of death in half from any cause, according to doctors who studied more than 10,000 people for 20 years.

Fact: Tennis players scored higher in vigor, optimism, and self-esteem, while scoring lower in depression, anger, confusion, anxiety and tension than other athletes and non-athletes.

Fact: Since tennis requires alertness and tactical thinking, it may generate new connections between nerves in the brain and thus promote a lifetime of continuing development of the brain.

As our community grows and develops, the need for recreational facilities increases right along with it.

There is no doubt that tennis is one of the best recreational activities suitable for a wide range of ages and abilities. The sport is growing and we have not kept up with the demand for indoor courts in our community.

For the record, we wholeheartedly endorse the increase in SDC fees and commend the city for having the vision to propose them. More indoor tennis courts are the best way to keep tennis from becoming 'an elite recreational option'

Gunnar and Marjie Brinck are residents of Lake Oswego.