Layer up! Platform tennis season is here.

Can you see the leaves starting to turn and smell the cold air? It can only mean one thing. Platform tennis (also known as Paddle) season is about to begin! If you’ve been saying you want to learn how to play or get back to this addictive and fun sport, the Wilton Family YMCA has many ways for you to learn, compete or simply play in friendly matches.

For those who have never heard of this sport, check out the American Platform Tennis Association website. It is a wonderful outdoor activity played on courts that are a quarter of the size of a tennis court. You can utilize the side screens which make it a fun and easy game to learn.

Can’t imagine that you would ever be able to learn a new sport? Take it from a group of ladies who showed up three years ago to a beginner clinic run by Leslie Gambee, the YMCA paddle instructor and competitive league coach. “She brought a bucket of rackets for us to play with and we just went from there,” says Megan Morris who now plays for a Y team. “Leslie has a great sense of humor and a wonderful teaching style. We all had a blast learning.”

Before they knew it, these ladies were the second group to enter competitive league play and now can boast impressive standings.

There are several opportunities to try a class or clinic this fall. There will be a drop in trial class taught by Gambee on Wednesday, Oct. 14 from 9:30-11:30 a.m.. She will have rackets and balls available, so wear layers and sneakers. Another chance to play is at the ladies’ season kick off Paddle Camp on Thursday Oct. 1, from 9-noon. For a fee, you will get 3 hours of energetic instruction from many highly-ranked paddle professionals in our area. Contact Gambee via email directly if you wish to sign up.

Everything else you need to know about playing paddle at the Wilton Family YMCA is now on the YMCA website, under the sports section. The site includes a way to sign up for a paddle membership, which gives you access to the court reservation system and the informal round robin play that happens mornings and evenings for men and women. You can also call Anne Cullinan, sports director, for more information at 203.762.8384, ext. 294.