Saturday, 5 October 2013


The amount of Tennis balls hit in a one hour one on one session compared to an hour group session with 6 to 8 students would possibly be around 600 to 200. That's a huge difference.
I recently held a session with a junior and we concentrated on less pace with more spin, this was after 30 minutes of technique drills with the focus being on perfecting the swing and follow through.
I asked the student to simply 'get it in ', yet this appears to be a huge problem for most students as they seem to be more obsessed with hitting winners. The first rally we had lasted 85 shots, not bad for a kid who used to count to 4 then if he hadn't missed then it was time to hit that winner. The second rally lasted 96 shots, getting better, the third just 55 shots, still we were getting the required result, then the longest rally I have ever had with a student.
After going through 100 shots I thought the focus would wear off but this kid was really in the 'Zone', we got to 210 before he missed, the technique was outstanding and the desire to not miss was also evident.
Keep the ball in play and give yourself a chance.......
One of my touring buddies from our 1991 European Tour, Brett Patten who became World Number 1 two years ago for 35-40's hit the nail on the head when he reiterated a statement from Brad Gilbert, 'It's better to win ugly than to lose pretty'.
This refers to the player who is simply prepared to get the ball in play instead of playing 'flashy Tennis' which focuses more on a glamorous style and a desire to hit winners.
The most successful coaches are the ones who think outside the square with their routines and who make the game affordable to learn. If we keep it affordable then students keep coming back, simple.....                 

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