Tennis coaching is back!

Jonny Kinsella and the coaching team are back on court and one-to-one coaching IS available to book NOW via MindBody.

Group coaching, for up to six people (including the coach) is pencilled in for early July.

“The LTA has given us permission to start group coaching on condition we successfully maintain current social distancing requirements,” said Tennis Chairman John Egan.

“The plan is to have the new Tennis Programme options available by the start of next month and this will be advertised in due course.”

For further information please contact

DoublesDoublesDoublesDoublesDoubles …

Meanwhile, the latest Government guidelines confirm that players from different households can now play doubles together, as long as they stay two metres apart as far as possible.

And with 19 courts now open for play, if you haven’t already reactivated your membership, now is definitely the time to do it – just contact – and we look forward to seeing you very soon!

Naomi launches Northern grass

It takes more than a global pandemic to stop Des opening the Northern’s grass courts on time …

Working single-handed and eking out the remains of last year’s lining fluid, Head Groundsman Des Ruchwaldy had three grass courts ready for Thursday morning. Now that the fluid delivery has finally turned up, the rest will follow.

And first on court to launch the grass season was Club member and international tennis star Naomi Broady.  “With the entire grass season being cancelled this year, I was really disappointed I wouldn’t get to play on my favourite surface at all,” said Naomi, who has clocked up nearly 30 singles and doubles titles on the international circuit.

“I was so excited to hear they’re now open! We’re so lucky to have a groundsman like Des who has worked so hard and got them ready and open for us all to enjoy.

“They are playing beautifully as always and it gives us a chance to enjoy this lovely weather safely during lockdown.”

Grass, synthetic and clay courts are all bookable via MindBody.


Three-month tennis taster membership offer

Starved of exercise? After ten weeks of lockdown, the return of outdoor tennis has been greeted by glorious weather and huge enthusiasm – and no more so than at The Northern.

The Didsbury club has seven of its clay/synthetic courts open so far and with Head Groundsman Des Ruchwaldy working hard to get the grass courts ready asap – things can only get better.

In fact they just did – because the Club is launching a three-month taster tennis-only membership for just £120. The offer runs until August 31st and is for NEW members only. So if you’re bored with road running … missing your regular gym sessions … desperate to get out into the fresh air – then get into tennis! Coaching is available too.

Just go to and click on the 3-Month Offer button. But please note that this offer is only open to applicants who have not held a Northern membership since December 31st 2019. Northern T’s and C’s apply.

A Message from the Front Line

Christie nurse and Club member John Bardsley is self-isolating at home after testing positive for coronavirus – he sent us this message:

” Hi, and greetings from the front line!

” As a lot of you may know, I’m a nurse and work at The Christie. All staff are now screened on a weekly basis, regardless of symptoms, mine came back positive. I’m completely asymptomatic and it was only picked up through a routine screen. I have had access to plenty of PPE through work and haven’t looked after a known Covid positive patient for over a month.

“My point is, we’re all at risk, all of the time. Amidst all the confusing guidelines and policies which seem to change on an almost daily basis, there is one thing that doesn’t change, common sense. Of course, a balance needs to be struck between safety and life returning to normal, we can’t lockdown forever, but please, if safety measures are put in place anywhere you might be interacting, please follow them. They’re not just to protect you, they’re there to protect everyone. That risk you might be prepared to take, someone else might not survive.

“So stay safe, protect everyone, and see you soon.”

Tennis Timetable Update

Eight-year-old Stanley Calladine summed up everybody’s feelings in his home schooling sentence construction exercise (above). “Today I can play tennis at my amazing tennis club the Northern … I feel great!”

 And it was great to see you too, Stanley, along with your sister Lulu, dad Phil and all the other members who quickly filled our available court slots to celebrate the return of competitive sport – at last!

PLEASE NOTE the timetable has now been adjusted for the coming week to include later evening sessions Monday – Thursday.

As before, the 90 min slots comprise 1 hr play, 15 mins to sweep and leave the courts with a 15 min buffer before the next pair arrive.

 Tennis timetable w/beg 17.5.20

 Sunday         10.00 start                                       16.00 finish

Monday                               13.00 start                                       20.00 finish

Tuesday       10.00 start                                                               20.00 finish

Wednesday            10.00 start                                                               20.00 finish

Thursday                             13.00 start                                       20.00 finish

Friday                                    11.00 start                                       17.30 finish

Saturday      10.00 start                                                   17.30 finish

 Members may book NOW on MindBody. PLEASE remember to enter your partner’s name in the Notes section and ensure that they are in the appropriate membership category – off-peak members will be asked to pay a guest fee to play at peak times.

And THANKYOU to everyone for sticking to the rules regarding the one-way system, use of hand sanitisers, individually marked tennis balls etc. These precautions are essential if we are to be able to stay open.

Tennis start-up hits the spot!

With half a dozen sanitisers, 50 feet of barriers, a lot of signage and some last-minute hedge-cutting from Des … the outdoor tennis start-up worked!

42 players on seven courts across three playing sessions proved that the Club CAN make outdoor tennis safe to play in today’s extraordinary conditions.

The Club aims to have the courts open daily from 10.00 to 19.00 in 90min slots, to comprise 1 hr play, 15 mins to sweep and leave the courts plus a 15 min buffer before the next session … last booking 17.30.

Book as normal on the MindBody smartphone app or via this website


* Times and booking procedures may vary on a day to day basis.

* Social distancing rules MUST be adhered to, otherwise you WILL be asked to leave the premises.

* Currently, bookings can only be made one day in advance.

* Singles play ONLY unless players are all from the same family.

* Members MUST name their opponent when booking. Failure to do so will result in the booking being cancelled.

* The booking member is responsible for their partner being a member. If they are NOT a member or not in the correct membership category (Peak or Off Peak) then the member will be charged a guest fee on arrival.

* Members should sweep courts after use (maintaining 2m social distance) and then use sanitizers provided.

* For serving, each player is required to bring their own tennis balls, marked boldly with their own initials, and not touch ANY other balls on the court.

Tennis is back! But PLEASE follow these guidelines ..


These guidelines currently apply to England only, and have been produced in line with the Government guidance on public spaces, outdoor activity and exercise published on 11 May 2020, which can be read on the website.



  •   Government information around social distancing is available here and should be read in full
  •   Be aware guidance can change and restrictions may be reintroduced – ensure you have checked the latest version of the LTA’s guidelines for tennis players on the LTA websiteBEFORE LEAVING HOME & AFTER YOU RETURN

    Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before leaving home to go to the court (or use an alcohol gel if washing hands is not possible)


  •   Where the facility allows, ensure you have booked a court in advance and make payment online
  •   Play should only take place on outdoor courts, with indoor courts and bubble courts remaining closed
  •   The LTA’s online booking platform has courts that can be booked in over 300 parks and clubs nationwide – the site will be live from Wednesday 20 MayEQUIPMENT
  •   Take hand sanitizer with you
  •   Take all your own equipment (do not share equipment such as rackets, grips, hats and towels)
  •   Only take the minimum amount of equipment with you that you need to play
  •   Clean and wipe down your equipment, including racquets and water bottles  before and after use
  •   Bring a full water bottle, and do not share food or drink with others
  •   Bring your own tennis balls that are clearly marked (e.g. with your initials)
  •   Ensure you take all your belongings with you at the end of the session and do
  • not leave anything on courtTRAVELLING TO AND FROM THE COURT
  •   Avoid using public transport
  •   Arrive as close as possible to when you need to be there
  •   Avoid touching court gates, fences, benches, etc. if you can
  •   Allow others to leave before you enter the court – if you need to wait then do so away from the courts and clear of the gates
  •   Ensure you leave the court before the end of your allotted time so that it is
  • empty for the next players
  •   Arrive changed and ready to play. Shower at home, and do not use the venue’s changing area

Do not congregate after playing. No extra-curricular or social activity should take place



  •   Maximum of two people per court (singles play only). Players can be from different households
  •   The only exception to the above is where a group of four players are all from the same household in which case they can play doubles
  •   Coached sessions should be limited to one to one coaching activity onlyMAINTAIN SOCIAL DISTANCING
  •   Stay at least two metres away from other players at all times (including during play, when taking breaks and before and after play)
  •   Do not make physical contact with other players (such as shaking hands or high five)
  •   Stay on your side of court and avoid changing ends, or agree to change ends at opposite sides of the net
  •   Avoid chasing the ball down to another court if other players are using itEQUIPMENT & FACILITIES
    •   Use your own clearly marked tennis balls
    •   Avoid using your hands to pick up tennis balls that aren’t yours – use your racquet/foot to hit/kick them to your opponent or return them to another court
    •   Avoid using other equipment such as courtside benches, net handles or court sweepers where possible
    •  When playing padel, try to avoid touching the court walls,  Be aware that onsite toilet facilities may not be open. Where they are open, players are advised to take particular care when using themHYGIENE

      If you need to sneeze or cough, do so into a tissue or upper sleeve  Avoid touching your face


  •   The initial focus during this phase should be on facilitating recreational and social play, and letting players spend time practicing
  •   Some formats of competition will be able to resume before others, and Local Tennis Leagues and singles box leagues/ladders can be played from 13 May as long as they adhere to the guidelines in place
  •   All LTA staged and LTA approved competitions (grade 1 to 6) up to at least Sunday 28th June 2020 have been cancelled
  •  The LTA will be providing guidelines for the resumption of competitive tennis activity in due course

There’s no rest for squash players during lockdown …

* Head Professional Julianne Courtice (above left) launched her weekly online court fitness sessions for senior team players last Sunday 3rd: “It went really well,” she said. “Everyone worked really hard – including me!”

For confirmation of further sessions watch the WhatsApp groups.

 * Coming soon: Head Coach Anna Vaughan Hawkins (above centre) is preparing an online version of the junior programme and Performance Coach Annette Pilling (above right) has already sent out sets of work to the performance players.

“We want to ensure junior players are ready to return to the court once restrictions begin to be lifted and also give them the opportunity to participate in some skills sessions with their squash friends,” said Anna.

For more details contact Anna on

* Meanwhile, former World No 1 Laura Massaro joined the Northern’s coaching team for an online coach development workshop led by Kurt Lindley, (former lead for Coach Development at Sports Coach UK) “Kurt was excellent – fun and thought-provoking,” said Anna. “Our part-time coaches don’t usually have time for their own personal development – but now they have!”

* Oh, and then there’s the Squash Familes Quiz every Saturday night – won last Saturday by Will and Lee Gregson.

“All in all, we’re a very busy section!” said Anna.

Well we can’t give you the view from the studio just now …

… but we CAN give you the studio classes!

FREE online classes are now available to Members on Zoom
SIX days a week –

Updated schedule for w/beg May 11th 

Book on line using your MindBody App or the Club website


 email to book your place.


12:45am YOGA with DAVID BOOTH


10.00am ZUMBA with NICKY


10.00am ZUMBA with NICKY



1:00pm YOGA with DAVID BOOTH



A selection of recorded workouts/ classes are also available on MindBody:
please email for more details

Lockdown Fitness Links

Whether it’s running or racquets you’re into, cycling or circuits – there’s plenty of free advice online to keep you limber during the lockdown.

Here are just a few we’ve researched for you:


England Squash

are publishing workouts/drills on their Facebook and Twitter feeds


Programmes and ideas for personal/family cycling activity

(Also Jo is hosting facebook live/facebook sessions, or Dave Booth, Rick and Liz can also give you a personalised static bike programme if you have a bike in your home.)


If you are making the most of the nice weather for your one trip outside to exercise, take care not to get injured.  Try following a training programme.

Runtogether UK Athletics – Running@home

Gentler Exercise Plans


British Heart Foundation

Move it or Lose It

or, of course contact either Nicky – Zumba Gold nsorbs@googlemail.comor Liz ( for some more personalised exercise plans.