Palmanova, Spain, ITF World Tennis Tour, W15 Palmanova, clay, outdoor: 1R, Anna Siskova (CZE) - Vicky Van De Peer (BEL) 26 64 63, 2R: Celia Cervino Ruiz (ESP) 57 63 61, QF: Maria Gutierrez Carrasco (ESP) 16 64 63, SF: Yvonne Cavalle-Reimers (ESP) 62 46 62, F:  Alba REY GARCIA (ESP) 6-3 6-1 TITLE!!!!

Palmanova, Spain, ITF World Tennis Tour, W15 Palmanova, clay, outdoor: 1R, Anna Siskova (CZE) - Vicky Van De Peer (BEL) 26 64 63, 2R: Celia Cervino Ruiz (ESP) 57 63 61, QF: Maria Gutierrez Carrasco (ESP) 16 64 63, SF: Yvonne Cavalle-Reimers (ESP) 62 46 62, F:  Alba REY GARCIA (ESP) 6-3 6-1 TITLE!!!!

Junior players from the EMPIRE Tennis Academy have been improving their stamina in the mountain resort Skalka pri Kremnici, their supervisor was the coach Kristian Cupak

During the first week of October, there was a fitness training program in Skalka pri Kremnici. Both Slovak and international members of the EMPIRE Tennis Academy – and there were seventeen of them altogether – were working out for seven days, under the supervision of Kristian Cupak and his assistant Patrik Fabian.

Fitness lead coach Kristian Cupak appreciated the conditions of the training program: “The facilities we have here are absolutely great, no doubt. We have a large gym, and we really enjoy playing soccer and basketball here. We can also use a workout room where we provide a power and agility training. Here’s also a wellness and swimming pool. And there is a lawn in the size of football pitch, many hills to run up to, as well as hiking trails. It meets all the requirements and the price is acceptable,” says Cupak for

Another advantage is the fact that the place is 1200 meters high. “It’s a refreshing experience. Here, we can recharge and unwind from tennis. It is also a useful teambuilding,” says Patrik Fabian, who has also been working with 17 young tennis players, together with Kristian Cupak.

“It is very hard to keep checking on so many sport players all the time. Moreover, we have two categories of the juniors, 14-15-year-old tennis players, and then 18-19-year-old ones. They are divided into two groups, so the training is more varied. Moreover, we have the group of junior boys I regularly coach. I really wanted to see it all with my own eyes and to consult everything with Kristian, as the preparation will continue in TC EMPIRE later through the year. I think they should work hard and get ready for the winter season, so they can have an easy start,” Fabian continues.

The training program lasts one week. Such length of the stay of stay is strategic. It is important because of the school, but also because of the expenses. And how does a day of the training program look like? “At eight, they come to breakfast. I really want them to go through the two phases of really hard training, and for the rest of the day, I want them to relax and regenerate. And at 10 p.m., they all lie in bed. Sometimes they play cards a bit longer, but under our watch. This way, it’s not so strict, there isn’t such a time pressure,” explains Kristian Cupak, talking about daily activities in Skalka.

In advance, parents had received a list of all the activities young sportsmen were going to do from Monday to Sunday. On the first day, the players got accommodated and then they had a lunch together.

“The first training was just introductory: warm-up, running, a little bit of rapid response drill, and a game to wrap it up. The next day, there was an intense start. We were running up the hill, the run was 20 to 50 meters long. In the afternoon, there was agility training and a shot put. There was also a long run, younger players were running 6 kilometers, and older ones were running 8 kilometers. In the afternoon, one group was playing, for example, basketball, the next one was in the gym, and then they switched. We also benefited from the presence of the competitive team from Bratislava. Some boys played basketball, the others played Frisbee outside. In the evening, there was a combination of wellness procedures."

Even though this training program is very important, we should not forget about the continuity. “The fitness training must be a continuous process during the whole year. Otherwise, such training program can’t help them out. But it’s the right start of the sport preparation, a great way to boost training volume. Such a training program, or a similar one, should be also arranged during the season,” explains the lead coach Kristian Cupak.

“I am pleasantly surprised; you could see it’s a refreshing change for them. Even in the sports club, they do not spend so much time together as here. They can really enjoy the unwinding from tennis. It’s a break from tournaments, the hustle and bustle and the lonely travels. Here, they are a team, they play basketball, volleyball, enjoy the evening free time together. They get along really well with each other,” says Patrik Fabian, delighted. Kristian Cupak adds: “It was a really good training program, great organization and good motivation for the young players. They all fulfilled their plans, 100 percent. So we really did what we promised ourselves to do.”

Participants of the fitness training program (apart from coaches):

David Cierny

Lukas Bielik

Tomas Lanik

Shinoshuke Tsuda

Vladimir Malakov

Viktor Banczi

Janos Fekete

Adam Arbet

Francesca Feodorova

Dusan Baranec

Andriy Porinskiy

Anatoliy Voloshyn

Artem Babenko

Lenka Stara

Natalia Schwarcova

Jakub Sevcik

Matus Barcaj

Photos by: 
Milan Hutera,

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