"My dad always said 'athletes lose their money,' " Serena Williams said

Serena Williams
Serena Williams
| Credit: Dave Shopland/BPI/REX/Shutterstock

Serena Williams is opening up about advice she got from her dad, Richard Williams, that has stayed with her since she was young.

“My dad always said ‘athletes lose their money,’ ” the tennis champion, 38, told former NBA player Jay Williams during a Chase Chats webcast. “He always talked about the importance of not losing it once you get it and not just buying everything you see. That has stuck with me for my whole life.”

Though her dad, Richard Williams, did share some sage advice, Williams later said there were lessons she wished she had learned from a young age.

“Honestly, I wish I had learned more about banking and how it works — what happens in a savings account versus what happens in a checking account versus what happens when you put your money investing with the bank,” she said.

“I didn’t learn that until way later and I really wish I would have learned that sooner so that I could have made my money work for me in different ways sooner and probably better,” the athlete added.

As for her daughter Alexis Olympia, who turns 3 in September, Williams said she’s already trying to teach her some of the basics.

“When it comes to finances, I told her the other day, ‘if you break that, you have to pay for it,’” she said of the toddler, whom she shares with husband Alexis Ohanian. “I’m already trying to tell her a little bit about the financial responsibilities.”

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“Not too much though,” Williams added, also sharing that she and Olympia have the same “innate” competitive spirit.

“My daughter is way more competitive than me,” she said, explaining that they’ll do “simple on your marks, get set, go races” that will result in Olympia crying if she loses. “She starts crying and I’m like ‘oh my gosh this is so me — that looks like me crying on the court.’”

“I've always wanted it so bad and I had to win,” Williams continued. “If I didn’t win I would cry and she’s doing the same thing. She’s so competitive she puts me to shame.”