February 9, 2010

Don't Practice With Your Tennis Coach

Huh?  Don't practice with my tennis coach?  If I'm don't practice during my lesson with my coach, what am I supposed to do?

Well, think about this. There is a big difference between learning to do something and practicing something. Your tennis lesson is your time to learn - stroke technique, form, footwork, court position, strategy and tactics. You need to take advantage of all of the knowledge and coaching your coach can give you - get every last cent of your money's worth out of that lesson.

Once you've learned some things, you need to get out and practice them, preferably at least twice a week.  Of course that means you may need to find some people to practice with you.  But tennis is a social game - you must know somebody to hit with!  And check out your club or area courts for drills and clinics that may be low or even no cost and will give you a chance to just hit lots of balls.

Also, think of how many things you can do on your own.  You can work on strokes with a ball machine.  You can hit up against a wall and get a lot of footwork in.  You can practice your serve out on a court all by yourself.  Heck, you can practice your toss standing in front of the TV with a rolled up ball of socks!

All of these are things your coach would not only encourage you to do but would be happy, maybe even excited, for you to do.  They will not only improve your game but will help you move forward in your lesson so you are ready for your coach to take you to the next level.


© Kim Selzman 2010
All Rights Reserved


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tennischick said...

hmmm...i get the point that you are getting at, but i think that you do need to learn from AND practice with your pro, and then try out your new techniques on other players upon achieving mastery. i can't imagine eliminating my coach from the practice phase. it's his job to make sure i correct all errors until i achieve mastery. after that he can set me free.

but this is a good point to debate. let me think on it and i may end up posting an entry on my blog in response. nice entry. thought-provoking.