MEDELLÍN, COLOMBIA – Tomás Patiño Aristizabal achieved a national ranking of #2 in singles and #1 in doubles as a junior tennis player in Colombia. He then went on to play Division 1 college tennis at the University of Missouri Kansas City, where he helped his team win 2 conference championships. After finishing his undergraduate degree in civil engineering he became a graduate assistant coach at UMKC. His experience as a tennis player and as a coach offered him many opportunities, and taught him valuable lessons about discipline, resilience, leadership, and adversity.
After several years coaching in the United States, Patiño returned home to Medellin, Colombia to bring some of those same opportunities and lessons to the children in his hometown. Patiño recently partnered with an organization called Fundación Amigos Del Tenis, who provide tennis equipment, lessons, meals, tournament entry fees, and counseling and social services to children living in some of the most impoverished communities on the outskirts of the city. He will provide one on one and group coaching to a small group of promising athletes with the goal of helping them earn tennis scholarships to US colleges and universities.
When asked about his interest in The Art of Learning, Patiño said, “As we entered a hard lockdown here in Colombia last year due to COVID-19, I decided to read The Art of Learning. I remember thinking at the time about how powerful it would have been if I had known this back when I was competing, or back when I was coaching college tennis. Or how different my process would have been if my coaches had been exposed to TAOL. I also thought about how I could “translate” some of these concepts into tennis so that I could share them with other coaches and players. What I think is so powerful about TAOL is that we are all so unique in how we learn, and understanding how we learn is fundamental to successful learning. Being good at learning is an asset in today’s fast changing world, and I’m excited about the possibility of teaching these kids how to learn through tennis. They can then apply those principles at school, on the court, and eventually in college and beyond. I really believe that these tools will give them a better opportunity to succeed in life.”
Patiño will use The Art of Learning principles to help these young athletes develop a growth mindset and a belief that they can achieve much more than they have previously understood. They will work on Valuing Process Before Results in order to develop a longer term vision of growth and achievement and will learn to Master the Fundamentals of the sport through deliberate practice.