An 84-year-old sports enthusiast graduated from the Wuhan Institute of Physical Education recently after 10 years of learning tennis, Tencent News reports.
The student, named Zhang Renpeng, was a chief engineer before he retired. In 2006, he sat in on a tennis class led by a teacher named Wang Weimin, and afterwards, started his 10-year audit of classes in WIPE.
According to China Daily:
His classmate during his undergraduate days, Li Kaijie, said although he lived far away in Hanyang District, Zhang was always the first to come and the last to go. Tennis professor Wang Kaijun also liked his elderly student, saying that he was always enthusiastic about his studies. Besides tennis, Zhang also took lessons in Photo Journalism, French, and Japanese.
In 2012, Zhang was diagnosed with prostate cancer. But these difficulties never stopped his commitment to learning. With approval from his supervisor Wang Kaijun, he began his 4-year master’s degree course.
Before every tennis class, Zhang would always warm up his limbs by swinging his racquet for a couple minutes.
“Doing warm up exercises is important. Being elderly means I must put in extra effort to protect myself from injuries, so as to avoid creating troubles for others.” said Zhang.
Pictures taken in 2013 show a focused Zhang attending a seminar held by the university’s president in celebration of the school’s 60th anniversary.
After graduating from the school, Zhang took up a job as a teaching assistant and plans on practicing the sport every day while he still can.
By Crystal Lau
[Image via Tencent]