Rafael Nadal has only just taken his first steps back on clay after announcing his return to action at the Mutua Madrid Open, but he’s been pounding the pavement in the Spanish capital all week long.

The world No. 4 recently inaugurated a new Rafa Nadal Foundation center for disadvantaged children in Madrid, the third of its kind following centers in Mallorca and Valencia. According to Nadal, the Madrid project was announced in response to the social crisis that arose out of the coronavirus pandemic.

“Today has been a very intense day, but fantastic at the same time,” he wrote on social media. “I’m happy to announce the new Rafa Nadal Foundation Center in Madrid in the San Fermin neighborhood, where we will serve minors in vulnerable situations through sporting and educational activities and psychosocial support.”

San Fermin is not only home to Nadal's new foundation center, it’s also home to the Caja Magica which hosts the Madrid Open every year.


That’s not the only Nadal project that’s been unveiled, as the busy Spaniard also announced plans for the UAX Rafa Nadal Sports University earlier that same day.

“It is especially exciting for me to be joining forces with Alfonso X el Sabio University,” he said. “Training and education help and facilitate the future for the youth, which is why the foundation of the UAX Rafa Nadal Sports University will work with the youth to give them the tools necessary through education, health and sport.”

The private university will provide in-person and online degrees in various specialties within the sports world, with current four- and five-year educational tracks including physiotherapy, human nutrition and diet, and sports science. Applications are open, and classes are scheduled to begin in September.