Kim Clijsters' first career felt so different from her second career. And it all feels so different than the life she leads now. But the long-running thread that connects it all is her life-long passion not just for the game but the people and fans who shared in her incredible journey.

The 33-year-old former World No.1, who won 41 WTA singles titles over a career that spanned 15 years, will be inducted into the International Tennis Hall of Fame this weekend, as part of the 2017 Hall of Fame class that includes Andy Roddick, Monique Kalkman-van den Bosch, a 4-time Paralympic medalist in wheelchair tennis, tennis journalist Steve Flink, and tennis coach Vic Braden.

"I've been taking it all in and it's been a little bit emotional at times," Clijsters told WTA Insider on the eve of her induction ceremony in Newport, Rhode Island. "It feels like a completely different life that I have. I've been retired for five years now. You kind of move on. I'm a mother, I have kids, supporting Brian in his career. You kind of forget about your past life and these tennis things. So to be in this position and to be honored is very special and kind of overwhelming."

Clijsters became the 12th woman and first Belgian woman to ever hold the No.1 ranking in 2003, holding the ranking for 19 weeks total throughout her career. Her consistency at the top of the game was the hallmark of her career. During an era that included Serena Williams, Venus Williams, Lindsay Davenport, and Justine Henin, Clijsters was ranked in the Top 5 for 250 weeks in her career. She is one of only six women in tennis history to simultaneously hold the No.1 ranking in both singles and doubles as well.

"I loved playing doubles," Clijsters said. "It was so important that I had fun playing tennis. I played most of my doubles tournaments with Ai Sugiyama and playing and practicing with her, I really loved it. I had so much fun doing it. It showed in our results, we won Wimbledon and the French Open."

Remarkably, three of Clijsters four Slam titles came after she came out of retirement in 2009 after stepping away from the game to get married and start a family. In just her third tournament back that year, she won her second major title at the 2009 US Open -- as an unranked, unseeded wildcard entry -- and went on to defend the title a year later. After winning the 2010 WTA Finals in Doha -- seven years after she won her last WTA Finals in 2003 -- Clijsters went on to win her fourth and final Slam at the 2011 Australian Open before retiring in 2012.

"I just hope that my passion for the sport comes through," Clijsters said, reflecting on her lasting impact on the game. "I came in contact with tennis when I was five years old and to this day I'm still very involved in tennis. I still love playing tennis but now it's my role to give back to the kids and bring that passion across and make them see how unique this sport is.

"We're very lucky that we still get to play this sport that is very well liked all over the globe, it's run by great people. We still have our past champions involved. We want to share that passion with the younger generation, whether it's kids playing juniors or someone like Jelena Ostapenko who just won the French Open. To make them realize how far our sport has come from back in the day to where we are now. When you're a teenager and you first come on tour it's a bit too much to value, but now that you're older you really, really appreciate it."

Read our full interview with Clijsters below:

WTA Insider: How are you feeling on the eve of your induction?

Clijsters: It takes a little time to sink in. Then when you start to look at the videos and the images that are available online, of the facility here, past inductees and past tennis greats, it's very special. You only feel how special and unique this place is once you get here. I've been taking it all in and it's been a little bit emotional at times.

It feels like a completely different life that I have. I've been retired for five years now. You kind of move on. I'm a mother, I have kids, supporting Brian in his career. You kind of forget about your past life and these tennis things. So to be in this position and to be honored is very special and kind of overwhelming.

WTA Insider: As you're walking around the Tennis Hall of Fame and looking at all the photos and memorabilia, who are the players and legends there that inspired you as a young girl?

Clijsters: Steffi Graf, Monica Seles, seeing them when I was a little girl at the French Open and Wimbledon. Being home, coming out of school in the summers, sitting inside and sitting in front of the television and seeing them compete and holding up trophies. All those emotions from your childhood to now, when I see my trophy a few feet away from theirs, is kind of overwhelming because you reflect on your whole life a little bit and how this thing called tennis has brought you to this point of your life. So it makes you look back and sit down and take it all in.

WTA Insider: When you say you were 'inspired' by Steffi and Monica, what did that inspiration feel like? What was it that inspired you?

Clijsters: Their focus. I just remember them being so focused. And of course the sport, seeing how Steffi moved, her footwork. Those were little things I thought were almost magical. I compare me going to Wimbledon for the first time like me going to Disneyland. As a little girl that's how I felt going to Wimbledon for the first time.

Seeing them hold the trophy, their emotions, how happy they were. From being so focused, being so composed, to that outburst of winning, that was really inspiring and gave me an almost addiction. I loved seeing that. I loved seeing those changes, to be able to relax when you were done. That's what I really admired.

WTA Insider: What do you think people will think of when they see that signature green Fila kit at the Hall of Fame?

Clijsters: I just hope that my passion for the sport comes through. I came in contact with tennis when I was five years old and to this day I'm still very involved in tennis. I still love playing tennis but now it's my role to give back to the kids and bring that passion across and make them see how unique this sport is.

We're very lucky that we still get to play this sport that is very well liked all over the globe, it's run by great people. We still have our past champions involved. We want to share that passion with the younger generation, whether it's kids playing juniors or someone like Jelena Ostapenko who just won the French Open. To make them realize how far our sport has come from back in the day to where we are now. When you're a teenager and you first come on tour it's a bit too much to value, but now that you're older you really, really appreciate it.

WTA Insider: When we talk about the great champions and Hall of Fame inductees, is it just about the winning? Does it take more than just winning to leave a lasting impression on this sport?

Clijsters: I think it's more than that. Obviously the combination makes a champion, maybe even a greater champion, someone who makes an impression on people's lives more than just a tennis match or winning a big trophy.

I was brought up in a way that fair play, being respectful to your opponent and the people around you, I was brought up that way. So for me it was very natural to be polite and behave and to adjust. When things are not going your way it's easy to complain, lots of players complain. I was more like, ok, you deal with the cards that you're dealt and you just go for it. That look on this world of traveling and jet lag and craziness at times too, is I think what helped me to stay humble through it all and appreciate all that happened in my career.

WTA Insider: You were one of just six women to ever hold the No.1 ranking in singles and doubles at the same time. Do you think we'll ever see that again? Nowadays it seems like top players stop playing doubles once they crack the Top 10. Why did you keep playing on both circuits?

Clijsters: For me it was important. I loved playing doubles. It was so important that I had fun playing tennis. I played most of my doubles tournaments with Ai Sugiyama and playing and practicing with her, I really loved it. I had so much fun doing it. It showed in our results, we won Wimbledon and the French Open.

It helped my singles career. It made me focus on going to the net more, practicing my serve and return, little things like that. I think what is really going to be important is this young generation to still play doubles to improve their overall tennis skills, I think. We're not all born with the talent of Roger Federer, and obviously, he has to work very hard too. I had to work very hard to know when to come to the net, anticipate a little better, to read the game. There's no better practice than doing it in a match.

WTA Insider: You've been doing a bit of commentary work so I'm going to ask you to put your commentary hat on. As we look ahead towards the US Open Series, what are you most looking forward to?

Clijsters: A lot of times they compare the ATP and the WTA and how the ATP has the Big Four, but I love the way women's tennis is right now. There are so many first round matches that I'm so interested in when I get to a Grand Slam because it's so unpredictable, and it doesn't mean our level is lower. Ok, we don't have someone like Serena who stands out above it all, but it's still very, very interesting.

Especially you have the girls who have done well this year. Ostapenko, Muguruza, it's interesting to see how they will deal with this new way of being approached by other players. It's always nice to see how somebody copes with fame and pressure when they're in a position to do well.

That just shows how players like Serena, Venus, Justine, myself, how we were able to stay on top of women's tennis for a long time. It's not easy. It's hard to, week in and week out, try and be at your best level so you don't get surprised by your opponents who are up to the challenge that day but maybe aren't ready to win a Grand Slam yet. So the consistency is something that is very tough and that's why I really admire what someone like Venus is doing these days.

WTA Insider: Do you think consistency is taken for granted these days because of how easy you all made it look sometimes?

Clijsters: Yeah, I think so. Without a doubt.