Giggles, hugs and high-fives concluded tennis coach Garry Glaub’s final class, a 25-year stint offering instruction through the city’s recreation department.
Everything has its season; I’m looking at it as a door opening,” said Glaub in an interview as he packed for a move to his hometown of Charlotte, N.C.
Over the past decades, Glaub has taught the game to generations of students, seeing them progress from a first lesson to competing on their college tennis team. He has a following of parents who say Glaub’s instruction included more than the skills and strategy of the game.
“He’s more than just my kids’ coach. He came to our kids’ birthday party. He talks to them about school. He has great integrity,” said Kathleen Elle Wallstein, 50, parent of two boys. “He will really be missed, but I am happy for him.”
Teaching tennis required hours on the court daily from 6:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. The effort has taken a toll on the knees of the 57-year-old. A basketball player in his early years and an avid hiker who claims more than 20 Mt. Whitney ascents, often with his Labrador named Whitney, has added to the strain and stress on his knees.
Despite the physical toll, Glaub says the sport is more his passion than his vocation. “It’s not a lucrative career,” Glaub said. He earns a second income in technology support for a software computer company, advising clients on an Adobe Illustrator program.
In retiring from coaching, he intends to continue as a software consultant as well as pursue his interests in photography and writing books and a blog based on his Christian faith. He is the author of six self-published books.
During his final class recently on the Moulton Meadows Park courts, Ivan Evans, 8, described what he learned from Glaub. “He teaches me how to hit three in a row. I just have to step sideways and hit it. I can hit four in a row with kids that are older than me.”
“I love the small town of Laguna; I will miss it,” said Glaub. He won’t miss the 300 square foot studio he shares with his dog. He says he is looking forward to a 1,400 square foot, two-bedroom home in Charlotte that rents for the same as his Laguna studio.
“I won’t teach tennis, but I will still play,” said Glaub. If he returns to Laguna, Glaub need not seek a hotel. Former tennis clients already deluged him with invites. He in turn has invited clients to visit him as well.
“I think it will always be an open door on all ends,” said Wallstein.