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Emory Makes Memorable Trek To Thailand
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The Emory women’s tennis players strapped on their backpacks and began hiking. They weren’t sure where the trail may lead or what they would find once they arrived.

For nearly 2 ½ hours, they traversed steep inclines and swatted away branches until reaching the hill tribe village.

Emory's Hike to a Hill Tribe Village in Thailand
© Emory Athletics

Emory’s recent two-week trip to Thailand included many adventures, but none bonded them like the mountain trek north of Chiang Mai.

The team stayed in a bamboo hut with no insulation, sleeping on mats lined side-by-side on the floor. They built a fire and shared blankets to keep warm, and kept each other’s spirits high when fatigue attempted to wear them down.

“I don't think many teams go through something like that together. We were dealing with things none of us had ever dealt with before,” said Emory senior captain Bridget Harding. “I think our entire team walked away stronger and realizing we can depend on each other. It is something we will never forget.”

Emory women’s coach Amy Bryant has taken the program on five international trips since being hired at her alma mater in 2000. The Eagles have traveled to Australia, South Africa, Brazil and visited Thailand once before in 2009.

“It really sets the stage for a deeper sense of understanding the world and a greater appreciation for things that are bigger than yourself,” said Bryant, the first female in NCAA tennis history in any division to win a national title as a player and a coach. “If you put the players completely out of their comfort zone, it allows them to appreciate everything we take for granted. It really shows them poverty at a whole new level.”

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Page updated on Monday, January 14, 2019
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