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Joe Canning, a 22 year old from Haverfordwest, who has set up a new tennis coaching business

Pembrokeshire tennis coach is ‘serving to win’ with new entrepreneurial venture

A 22-year-old from Pembrokeshire has launched a new tennis coaching business with the aim of finding the next Andy Murray.

Joe Canning, from Haverfordwest, has set up JMC Tennis and Fitness coaching to teach and inspire the next generation of tennis players in Wales.

Joe has played tennis since he was a child, securing a scholarship to train at a tennis academy where he was then hired as a tennis coach. With a coaching qualification under his belt, Joe launched his tennis coaching business late last year and has already built up a regular client base around Pembrokeshire.

Joe’s business is currently mobile traveling across Pembrokeshire. He teaches a variety of ages and abilities, from one-on-one lessons to groups, young children and adults. He also goes to nurseries and playgroups in the local area teaching tennis to toddlers.

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He has built up his clientele through word of mouth and has found social media highly beneficial for promoting his classes and raising awareness of his business.

Joe said “I enjoyed school, I wasn’t that intellectual, I was more sporty and really enjoyed PE and that’s what got me into my sport. I was really passionate about tennis from the start, I didn’t miss one session, and I was fully committed.

Teaching tennis opened up a new side of the sport for me and I find it so rewarding helping people develop a skill.”

“I am studying nutrition and personal training with an online learning provider, to be able to offer more services to my clients. Running a business alongside studying is really tough but I’m very focused on my future goals, which gets me through it.

“The business is only a few months old but I have a good client base now and with more skills to my name I hope to be able to diversify the business into different areas of fitness.”

Joe started his business with the help of Big Ideas Wales, the youth entrepreneurship service in Wales. Big Ideas Wales is part of Business Wales and is funded by the Welsh Government and the European Regional Development Fund.  The service is aimed at anyone between the age of 5 and 25 who wants to develop a business idea.

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Talking about the service Joe said: “Setting up a business isn’t easy and takes a lot of time, motivation and understanding. The people at Big Ideas Wales have so much business knowledge and are very supportive, they made the whole process a lot easier.

“I attended a start-up business course organised by Big Ideas Wales in August last year and learnt so much. I am also attending a free business Bootcamp course hosted by Big Ideas Wales in March and am looking forward to furthering my business knowledge.

“My business advisor from Big Ideas Wales, David Bannister, also helped me develop a business plan and secure a loan with the Start Up Loan Company which allowed me to get the equipment needed to run my classes. Without that support I wouldn’t have been able to start the business so I’m very grateful.”

In the future, Joe has aspirations to introduce his tennis coaching to playgroups and nurseries all over Wales, as well as offering a meal plan service to help people trying to lose weight to reach their personal goals.

He continued: “I plan to diversify the business into personal training around Pembrokeshire, but I would love to one day open my own gym, tennis and fitness club. However my passion will always be to produce and coach future world-class tennis players.”

David Bannister, a Big Ideas Wales business advisor, has been working closely with Joe offering advice to help him develop his business further. He said: “Joe is a great example of a hardworking, focussed young person. He’s reaped the benefits of the service Big Ideas Wales offers young people in Wales, whether their business is office based or on the tennis court. Joe has big ambitions for the future, but with perseverance I have every faith that he’ll turn his dreams into reality.”

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