Hugo Santos

Beginners to Competition
Head Coach at Warkworth & Te Atatu Tennis Clubs


Hugo began playing tennis at the age of 10-years-old in Colombia, South America. At age 15 Hugo moved to Miami Florida, USA and played tennis for his high school.

As a high-performing junior, Hugo trained with the USTA and competed with success in tournaments in Florida up to the age of 19-years-old. At 20-years-old, Hugo returned to Colombia to study a Bachelor of Marketing Communications and manage the family advertising business.

Hugo has been in NZ since 2012 where he has continued to study and is now actively involved in his passion—coaching tennis!

Coaching Style

  • High-energy, focused, results-driven
  • Technical expertise, analytical
  • Competitive strategy and tactics


  • ITF Level 1 JDC (in progress)
  • Bachelor of Marketing Communications
  • Postgraduate in Strategic Management

Coaching Experience

  • Tennis Coach since 2016 in New Zealand
  • Assistant Coach at Pompallier Tennis Club
  • Head Coach at Warkworth & Te Atatu Tennis Clubs

Career Highlights

  • National tournaments around Colombia for 3 years
  • National tournaments and High School tournaments in the USA
  • Sponsored by the USTA in the USA


1. Why did you want to become a professional tennis coach?

“I am a people person, I love interacting with others, it’s part of my personality. In the past I had been trainer and speaker in other companies and in different industries, helping and working with children is another of my passions, being able to interact and talk in their language is an everyday rich experience.”

2. What do you love most about coaching tennis?

“It’s just all about people, seeing how they reach every milestone, helping to put a smile in the life of a child or adult, making a small difference in the life of the people we are interacting every day.”

3. How would describe your coaching style?

“I am a quite friendly approachable person off-court but when it comes to the game, I’m analytical and finding ways of attacking to win the game.”

4. Why are you so passionate about tennis?

“Tennis is a sport connecting people, bringing families together — any person can play it, it doesn’t matter if you are a great or lack of skill player, young or old, everybody can have fun and learn – and that it why I’m so passionate about tennis.”

5. What is one of the most memorable tournaments you’ve played in?

“My first social club tournament when I was 11 years old, I played the final with my father.”

6. What are some of your favourite tournament venues you’ve played at?

“Key Biscane, Grandom Park – Nasdaq pre-qualifying tournament in Miami, Florida.”

7. What are your favourite tennis brands?

“Wilson is a brand I love and much respect.”

8. What influences and inspires your coaching methods?

“My personal coach Haward Koufman, he made a difference in my life, he put a smile on my face as a child playing tennis, I remember many things he taught me not just on the court but also experience and kindness in life, influencing me in the way how I approach and teach kids today.”

9. What has been your biggest lesson learned since qualifying as a professional coach that you would pass on to enthusiastic players today?

“Time on the court playing with efficient technique is key to having a long-lasting tennis career injury free.”

10. What New Zealand personality would you like to coach at your local tennis club?

“People who inspire and challenge you and put discipline and work ethic as a priority in their lives.”

11. What are your other interests when you’re not coaching tennis?

“I love spending time with family, bush walks and road trips. Planning and creating new strategies to continue growing what I love to do.”

12. What are your favourite places in Central Auckland?
  • Life Church
  • Viaduct
  • Ponsonby Central for dinner and catching up with friends