Coach Samson Dubina 2016 US National Team Coach 2015 - 2018 USATT Coach of the Year

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5 Reasons for the NEW Academy

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New Samson Dubina Table Tennis Academy:

Why are we taking the risk and opening a large, full-time training center for table tennis?

There are several reasons that I would like to outline:

#1 Family-Friendly Activity
There aren’t many activities that the whole family can do together year-round that are local, affordable, fun, entertaining, and focus on fitness for the body and mind! Table tennis is the perfect fit to bring families together here in Akron. Currently, we are only open on Mondays and Thursdays from 6pm-9pm. With the opening of the new academy, families will be able to enjoy table tennis anytime during the week – Tuesday after school, Friday night fun night, Saturday morning before chores begin… You name it! We will be open 6 days/week to bring families together!

#2 Elite Training
Table Tennis has been an Olympic sport since 1988. The US Junior team has been steadily rising with Kanak Jha recently being ranked the #1 Junior in the WORLD (yes, you read that right) and Amy Wang now being ranked the #2 Junior in the WORLD. As kids in Ohio follow in their footsteps, they need a world-class environment to train on a daily basis with daily group classes, daily private lessons, daily fitness groups, weekly leagues, frequent tournaments, and frequent training camps. Currently, most of my lessons are in the converted garage in our basement! (see video)

#3 My Current Workload
I’m currently coaching up to 40 hours/week plus doing office work up to 40 hours/week. It is tough for me to continue doing office work, international equipment sales, local promotions, managing events, and coaching full-time. With the NEW Samson Dubina TT Academy, Blake Cottrell will be managing my office work, product sales, inventory, accounting, billing, tournaments, and leagues. Another office worker will be the meet and greet party when you enter the building – the friendly employee will explain the programs that we offer and how you can benefit from the program – this employee will also be in charge of the pro shop and snack bar. As I delegate my responsibilities to others, this frees up more time with my family and more time to promote the sport to new families!

#4 Future Players
We are currently on the brink of really expanding the sport here in Ohio – there are a few ways. First, the school systems in the area are excited about table tennis. A recent school survey showed that up to 350 kids per school in the Akron area would be interested in joining a table tennis club. Teachers are also excited about the possibility. We will be hosting an ITTF Level-1 course for teachers this summer. Starting in the fall of 2019, we hope to have table tennis in at least 10-20 of the local schools. Another avenue of getting new players is to offer a program that is attractive enough for out-of-town players to move to Ohio. We have had at least 8-10 players mention that they would like to move to Ohio. Another avenue to getting new players to re-recruiting players that we have lost in the last few years. There are many reasons that we have lost them, but often it is due to a clash with other Monday/Thursday activities. As we will be open Monday-Saturday, we feel confident to get those kids and adults back into the sport.

#5 The Gospel
I’m very thankful that USATT just chose me as Coach of the Year for the 4th consecutive time, and I’m very thankful that I also recently got a Coach of the Year award from USOC. But in comparison to eternity before us, these temporary, earthly accomplishments are extremely insignificant. One of my many goals for opening the new academy is to create opportunities for me to personally share the Good News of Jesus Christ with fellow table tennis players. There are a few theme verses that I personally have…
1 Timothy 4:8
For bodily exercise profits a little, but godliness is profitable for all things, having promise of the life that now is and of that which is to come.
Matt 28:18-20
And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.
Romans 1:16
For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek.

So the question arises…

If this academy is such a good idea, what didn’t you open it previously?

Because of the great hospitality that we received at the Shaw JCC. They have been so good to us in accommodating our programs and helping to promote table tennis. From the very first day that I talked into the Shaw JCC, I have known a group of individuals who are truly looking for our success and have gone the extra mile for our promotions.

As we move to the NEW Academy this spring, I would like to send out a huge THANK YOU to all of my friends at the Shaw JCC!!!

I would also like to send out a huge thank you to the 41 people who have donated a total of $12,200 so far. We now have 2.5 weeks left and are still looking to raise $17,800! Thanks guys!

New Samson Dubina Table Tennis Academy: