Doctor Tips: Keeping Your Feet and Ankles Healthy

Hello USTA Mid-Atlantic! I’m Dr. Blake Moore at Atlantic Orthopaedic Specialists. I specialize in foot and ankle surgery for both acute injuries and chronic care. I work in Virginia Beach and see patients at both our Princess Anne and Camelot offices. My Athletic Trainer, Riley Fontaine, MSAT, ATC, OTC will be available at USTA MAS events across the greater Hampton Roads area for consultation and appointment scheduling if you experience an injury and need further care.

I wish to offer some advice to keep you in the game not only today, but for many years to come. There are a number of different structures in the foot and ankle that can lead to daily discomfort and even debilitating pain. For anyone who has experienced this type of pain you know that it can affect your daily life and extend to your game play as well. Among the various conditions that can affect one’s foot and ankle, tennis players are at an increased risk to sustain an ankle sprain due to the constant demands of the sport including lateral movement, cutting and twisting.

Recent sports literature suggests that ankle sprains are the most common injury suffered during sports participation. With appropriate treatment the vast majority of these injuries go on to heal themselves. If left untreated, and repeat incidents occur, some athletes go on to develop chronic ankle instability, where the ankle is no longer able to support the body as its virgin status once could. If you’ve experienced one of these injuries, here is what you should know.

Prevention of a primary incident or rehabilitation to prevent a secondary event is thought to be the key to decrease the rate of recurrence in most cases. Ankle sprain prevention programs that include proprioceptive exercises, isolated single leg strengthening and balance activities have been shown to decrease the risk of sustaining a repeat ankle sprain. An ankle sprain, regardless of severity, affects the ligaments that stabilize your ankle. Proper treatment and gradual/monitored return to sport, increase the chances of a long, healthy and successful career.

Click here to watch Dr. Moore demonstrate what severe ligament ankle damage looks like. 

With those tips in mind we hope you have a healthy and successful career. If you sustain an injury to the foot or ankle we would be happy to treat you and team up to safely return you to play. Please feel free to schedule an appointment by contacting Ceil Scarano at (757) 321-3307, or visit for more information.

Keeping your Knees Healthy

Hello USTA Mid-Atlantic! I’m Dr. Bradley Butkovich at Atlantic Orthopaedic Specialists. I specialize in Sports Medicine and Arthroscopy and see patients at our Kempsville and Depaul offices. I am the Team Physician for Old Dominion University and work with all athletes including ODU’s Men’s and Women’s Tennis Teams. My Athletic Trainer, Jonathan Hartman, MSAT, ATC will be available at USTA MAS events in the Virginia Beach area for consultation and appointment scheduling if you experience an injury on the court.

Today I wanted to discuss “knee health” and give you some tips to help keep you on the court! Tennis requires you to be quick on your feet to keep the ball in play. All of the constant back-and-forth, quick turns, and other moves mean that your knees are constantly being twisted, turned and pounded on.

As a tennis player it is very important to protect your knees and prevent knee pain and problems. Always warm up before a match, and cool down afterward. It is crucial to have a good stretching program to be performed before and after activity. Play within your limits, and ease back into play if you haven’t played in while. Strengthen the muscles around your knee and in your legs to offer better support and protection for your knees. Exercises that focus on quadriceps, hamstrings and core are all very important in injury prevention.

If you have an injury, take a break from tennis and allow the knee to heal. Ice the knee regularly to ease pain and inflammation, and keep the knee elevated to manage swelling. The use of a knee sleeve can help keep the knee warm and has proprioceptive properties that can help to support the knee. Anti-inflammatory medications such as Aleve, Advil or Ibuprofen, can help to manage your pain and swelling. If you are having persistent swelling, pain, locking, clicking or catching then you may have a more serious knee joint problem and you should come see us in the office. Please feel free to schedule an appointment by contacting Renee Hart at (757) 321-3311, or visit for more information.

Preventing Shoulder Injuries with Dr. Brad Carofino

Hello USTA Mid-Atlantic! I’m Dr. Brad Carofino at Atlantic Orthopaedic Specialists in Virginia Beach. I am a shoulder and upper extremity specialist. I am excited to be assisting USTA MAS with my services for its members. My Athletic Trainer, Brice Snyder, MSAT, ATC, OTC is available at matches and tournaments throughout the 757 for consultation and appointment scheduling if you experience a shoulder or upper extremity injury.

Today I wanted to focus on some “shoulder health” education. As a shoulder specialist, I see lots of recreational athletes with overuse shoulder injuries. Tennis in particular places high demand on the shoulder joint. It has been cited that the humerus (the ball of the shoulder) spins into internal rotation at velocities reaching 2420°/s during the acceleration phase of the serve in an elite athlete.1 Another study analyzed data from a tennis pro competing at the US Open and found that he took over 1000 serves in a two-week period. Compare this to a professional baseball pitcher who throws at most 100 pitches every 4 days.2

Not everyone serves a tennis ball at those speeds or takes that many serves in a two-week time span. Do I commonly treat those types of professional tennis players? No. However, as a team physician for the Norfolk Tides I do care for many professional baseball players with similar injuries. More importantly, I see countless weekend-warrior type recreational athletes. Unfortunately most recreational tennis players don’t dedicate enough time to stretching and strengthening of the shoulder muscles. This can lead to overuse strains of the rotator cuff or even rotator cuff tears. The rotator cuff muscles are essential for arm motion above shoulder level.  Fortunately, many of these injuries can be prevented with appropriate conditioning exercises.

The biggest piece of advice I can give someone who plays tennis with USTA Mid-Atlantic is to perform an in-season maintenance program that focuses on rotator cuff strengthening and shoulder stretching.  This has been shown at all levels and types of overhead sports to be effective and manageable. There are many shoulder programs out there and the one I like the most is the “Throwers Ten” program. It is easy and requires minimal equipment.

Please visit my website: for more information on shoulder injuries. Also visit, for an instructional on the “throwers ten” program and for a printout of the program.  To learn about the rotator cuff visit

Contact 757-321-3300; 757-679-3407 (Brice, Athletic Trainer) to schedule an appointment or visit for more information


  1. Fleisig G, Nicholls R, Elliot al Kinematics used by world class tennis players to produce high velocity serves. Sports Biomech 2003251–64.
  2.  Johnson CD, McHugh MP, Wood T, Kibler B. Performance demands of professional male tennis players. Br J Sports Med. 2006; 40 8: 696– 699

Navigating the New

If you’ve tried to go to in the past few days, you’ve certainly thought to yourself “Hey, this isn’t the website I’m used to seeing!” That’s because USTA has received an all-out digital makeover – not quite the same as say Tai’s makeover in Clueless – but a comprehensive makeover nonetheless! We’re extremely excited about the new and improved look of and hope you love it, too.

We know change can be hard, though. Someone much wiser than me once said “Change is hard at first, messy in the middle and so gorgeous at the end.” Our goal is to make finding your way around a little less hard at first and a little less messy in the middle, so we can get right to the gorgeous part. To help with that, we’ve put together a guide on how to best navigate and where everything lives on the new

Location Sharing
One great new feature of the site is its ability to show content based on where the user is located. For example, if you’re located in Southwest Virginia, you’ll see pages – everything from news to league information to junior tournaments – specific to the Mid-Atlantic Section. People in Nevada won’t see these Mid-Atlantic pages; they’ll see pages from USTA Intermountain. In essence, you’ll be shown only the most relevant content for you when you’re navigating through the site. For this feature to work, though, you’ll need to select “Allow” when your browser prompts you to share your location.

The easiest way to get the localized content is to allow your location the first time you visit by simply clicking “Allow” in the dialogue box from your browser. If you had already chosen not to share your location, but would like to see USTA Mid-Atlantic content in your navigation, here’s a handy guide to changing that setting.

Let’s say you’re traveling outside the Section or prefer not to share your location with the site, worry not! You’ll still be able to view all the Mid-Atlantic pages, it will just be a little trickier to find them, since they won’t appear when you’re scrolling through the site. The site’s search function will be your best friend in this scenario, and we recommend using it.

Now that we’ve got that business out of the way, let’s dive in to where some Mid-Atlantic pages are located on the revamped website!

Play > Play as a memberNew site - Play as a Member
As you might have already guessed, this section is for all member-based programs: adult leagues, tournaments, Junior Team Tennis, etc. Many of the Mid-Atlantic-specific pages are in this area of the web site so there is a lot of content here. Pro tip: it’s a good idea to use the filters located in the blue boxes before the list of individual pages begins.

Some key pages in this section:
Mid-Atlantic leagues home page
Leagues Regionals and Sectionals information
10 and Under Player Pathway
JTT Championships

Stay current
Head to this section for all news – national and Mid-Atlantic specific! We’ll add in articles about upcoming events, members in our Section who have been recognized, interesting stories and much more. Right now, you’ll find that 2017 Mid-Atlantic Award Nominations are open.

For our readers who do more than play tennis, the Organize section of the site is where you’ll find resources and information. The Program Resources subsection includes pages for League Captains and Tournament Directors. If you head over to the Grants and Assistance subsection, you’ll find pages for Mid-Atlantic program grants, Mid-Atlantic junior player grants and USTA National grants, among other information.

AboutNew Site - About
In the upper-right of the homepage above the main navigation menu, you’ll see the “About” button that will take you to all the information you need to know about USTA Mid-Atlantic and USTA National. Scrolling down, you’ll see topic areas such as “Who We Are,” under which you can find the USTA Mid-Atlantic staff directory. (Unfortunately our headshots did not make the cut in the digital makeover, our apologies if you miss being able to see the beautiful faces of the USTA MAS staff.)

Returning to the main About page and scrolling down further is the USTA Leadership section. Here you can find pages for the Board of Directors, committees and volunteering in the Mid-Atlantic Section. Toward the bottom of the About page, there is the Work for Us section, which is where jobs at USTA Mid-Atlantic will be posted – check it out, there are a few openings at the moment!

There is a goldmine of information and resources in every section of the site (we especially like the Improve section!), so take some time to click around. This guide is meant to help you find Mid-Atlantic Section pages, but it didn’t cover where all our pages or more general information are located. If you need assistance in finding a specific page or information – after using the search bar – try sending us a message on our Facebook page or email Chris Lewitzke at

Chris Lewitzke is the social media and engagement coordinator at USTA Mid-Atlantic. His favorite Mid-Atlantic page on the new is the adult league homepage, but he’s probably a little biased since he created that one.

Choosing the Right Tennis Summer Camp

This post is brought to you by our friends at Nike Tennis Camps, who want to help you choose the right tennis summer camp for your son or daughter.

Summer is around the corner and as a parent of three, I too, am trying to figure out where to send my kids to summer camp this year.  Near or far, the options seem to be endless and at times, it’s hard to find something specific for each child’s needs and interests.  So, whether your child is new to tennis or has been playing for years, here are a few helpful hints on how to choose the right camp for your camper:

Location.  Starting with some basics, are you looking for something nearby? Or a camp while you’re on a family trip? In state or out of state?  Begin with a simple search: “Nike Tennis Camps in [insert state]” or go to and use the map guide in the top right hand corner.  There are over 80 Nike Tennis Camp locations (along with 250 other sport locations) across the United States. The following info will help you narrow the options.

Day Camp vs. Overnight Camp.  This is a big question for many, and ultimately may be determined best by your campers age or readiness for sleepaway camp.  However, if your camper is looking to immerse themselves in tennis, get the full campus life experience, make new friends and create lasting memories, an overnight camp session is the best.  Overnight camps usually run weekly from Sunday through either Thursday or Friday.  The curriculum is a perfect blend of expert instruction, supervised match play and fun off court activities.  In addition, campers get to experience the day-to-day life on a college or prep school campus – live in the dorms, eat in the cafeterias and walk around campus.  Many sites include a variety of team competitions throughout the week and/or nightly themed activities for additional camp fun.  These camp sessions are a great fit for both the “first timer” looking to test out sleepaway camp, or the repeat camper who comes year after year to continue to improve their game, make lasting friendships and have “Serious. Fun.”

Day camps typically run Monday through Friday 9am-4pm (times vary by site) and consist of both a morning session (drilling and point play) and afternoon session (match play).  Day only camps are a great option for a kid who wants to get a lot of court time but stay close to home. Geared for all skill levels, day only camps offer the same high-level instruction as the overnight camps, but without the “campus life” experience.

Many of the overnight camp locations offer a day only component or even an extended day camp option (includes lunch and dinner and evening activities), so be sure to check out the details for each location.

Type of Program.  This can be a tricky one for parents as we all want to be sure the camp is a good “fit” for our child’s ability level.  The good news – all of these camps typically attract players of all ability levels and ages, so there is an option for everyone.  But, if trying to narrow your options based on level or age, here are some basic guidelines to the programs offered:

Nike Summer Camp Blog 3.JPG

All Skill Levels 

Geared towards young athletes of all ability levels. Campers will be evaluated on the first day and placed into groups based on their age and ability. Includes concentrated work to develop the proper fundamentals and includes a mix of drilling and match play.

Tournament Training 

If you have a tournament level player and want to be sure the competition is right for your child, choose one of the tournament training sessions.  Geared towards (USTA) tournament level and ranked players looking to improve tournament results, learn winning strategies and increase mental toughness. Includes additional focus on match play, strategy, conditioning and tournament preparation.

High School (ages 13-18) 

If your camper is most excited about being at camp with other high school aged kids, choose one of the high school sessions.  Geared toward high school players (and incoming freshmen) with aspirations of making the high school team, moving up the ladder or improving tournament results. Includes additional focus on match play, strategy and conditioning. Similar to Tournament Training sessions, but limited to ages 13-18 only and does not presume that all players participate in (USTA) tournaments.

10 & Under Tennis (ages 5-10)

This is an exciting new way kids 10 and under are learning to play tennis as well as compete. The courts are smaller and balls are low-compression so they are easier to hit, allowing kids to get to the ball and develop optimal swing patterns.

 Last, but certainly not least, do your homework and call or email with questions!  Whether you’d like to find out more about the director, staff, dorm configuration, food options, ages of campers already enrolled, whatever it may be, call 1-800-645-3226 and ask to speak to a sport representative.  You can also email us at At the end of the day, you want to find a camp that your child is excited about and is a place you feel comfortable with. The Nike Tennis Camps motto: SERIOUS. FUN.

USTA Mid-Atlantic provides summer camp scholarships to families of need. The application can be found here, and the deadline to apply has been extended to April 24.