Unexpected Athlete: Trisha Goyal

Meet Trisha Goyal, who invented New York City’s first virtual tennis club, Break the Love.

 

When many people hear the word “champion,” they think of the biggest winner, the person who bested everyone in a competition. The one who carries home the trophy. We don’t know how many trophies are on Trisha Goyal’s shelf, but we do know another definition of the word champion: a person who leads a cause to make life better for other people. It’s the one that doesn’t earn trophies but instead earns them a reputation for changing things for the better. Read on, and you’ll understand why we are incredibly proud to have this champion on our Advisory Staff.

As a first-generation American daughter of Indian immigrants, Trisha’s efforts to assimilate were improved by playing tennis with her family.

“When you think about any first-generation kid growing up in the U.S., it's really kind of a different set of challenges that others just won't really understand. And for me, just going to a school that was, you know, predominantly white, my experience was that I really had to figure out a way to fit in. And for me, and I was very fortunate that my parents put me in sports. For me, tennis was that way. It was the way that I was able to form friendships.”

Trisha graduated from NYU’s Stern School of Business with a degree in Finance and Management. By her junior year, she was named one of the school’s top ten most influential students due to her effective efforts in fostering global engagement between students and alumni.

After Trisha graduated, she spent some time honing her product management skills but felt isolated and disconnected from people. The sense of community she had in school was gone. She turned back to tennis but found that tennis clubs were expensive and exclusive. So, Trisha did what she does best and created a digital community that connects tennis players from all backgrounds and skill levels--enabling them to play, learn, and teach the game. A community that sparked Trisha to found Break the Love.

Break the Love is a virtual tennis club that utilizes public parks around New York City and organizes tennis meetups, court time, lessons, tournaments, and leagues. Events and prices are listed according to type, including clinics, cardio, drills, and variations on the sport. The platform has expanded across the U.S. with people from different backgrounds and experiences investing in this community. For Trisha, the most rewarding part of her venture is watching people build relationships and connect through tennis.

“I think, for so many of our members and our players, people come to us with very different kinds of experiences, maybe trying to play a sport somewhere else, or they couldn't find another outlet. And we become that place that they want to spend their time and invest their time building relationships with. And I think that has been so incredible for me is to be able to see these connections as well as being able to know that I'm a part of that happiness that I'm able to create for real people and kind of be that escape for them has been an incredible and rewarding experience.”

Trisha’s passion doesn’t end with Break the Love; she also mentors female and non-binary students in the Built by Girls WAVE program and is an associate board member of New York Junior Tennis and Learning. She deserves the label of champion in every way. Follow Trisha on Instagram here, and Break the Love here.