Tennis Blog

Tip of the Week (Coach Steph): Internal & External Motivation June 17 2015, 1 Comment

Practice makes perfect. It sure does, if it is "good" practice.

The acquisition or improvement of a skill requires good habits from the start to enable a player to repeat it correctly.

Motivation is required if repetition of a skill seems challenging. Motivation can be created by oneself (internal), or by inspiring and energetic tennis coaches (external)!



Internal motivation is in general created easier by adults. Children need that extra "fun factor", and some adults need that confidence boost to feel free to make mistakes in the learning process.

No matter the age, if the player is motivated to learn, internally and externally, there will be no stopping their improvement!

At Anyone For Tennis, all our coaches are extremely motivated to make a difference! Book a session with us and let us motivate you to take your tennis game to the next level.


Tip of the Week (Coach Sam): Off-Court Fitness Training June 02 2015, 1 Comment

If you are looking to take your tennis game to the next level or just want to enjoy playing for longer, then what you do off the court in terms of fitness can make a huge difference to your game.

At Anyone For Tennis, we believe that tennis is a whole body sport with a major focus on leg and core strength, along with speed agility and stamina. We recommend circuit training that involves exercises that fire up the muscles used in tennis.

Here is a beginner body weight circuit to get the ball rolling:

  • Squats - 20
  • Lunges - 20
  • Planks - 30 secs to 1min
  • Skipping - 1 min
  • Wall Sit - 1 to 2mins
  • Mountain Climbers - 50
  • Burpees - 10 to15
  • Court Sprints

By adding in fitness training 1-2 times a week, you will notice a huge difference in your game and get more satisfaction and enjoyment from being able to play your shots with correct technique when it comes down to crunch time.

Professional tennis players are some of the fittest athletes on the planet. So put the hard work in and the results will happen.

Contact us to join our trial classes for tennis-specific fitness programs including cardio tennis, personal training, coordination lessons (foundation tennis fitness lesson for kids), and boot camps.


Tip of the Week (Coach Dave): Utilize Your Practice May 15 2015, 1 Comment

Hi, I'm Coach Dave from Anyone For Tennis and here's my tip of the week: Utilize your practice.

Remember: Practice does NOT make perfect. Practice makes permanent. Only perfect practice makes perfect. Always practice with a purpose, don't just go out and hit balls aimless.

Make a solid first move on the forehand, use the non-playing arm and get the racket tip UP!

If you want to maximize your options on a forehand and generate easy power, a smooth, solid first move is essential. On the contrary, a slow, late or jerky first move can lead to the dreaded late contact and/or even worse...the shank.

Here's how: From an athletic-ready position with good posture, after making the split step right on the opponent's racket contacting with the ball, the racket tip should be facing up and the left (or non-playing hand) on the throat of the racket initiating the shoulder turn (see Roger above) all done simultaneously.

Things to watch out for:

Be careful not to open the racket face when lifting the racket head above the hands as that may lead to the dreaded slice. You can make sure the racket strings are facing the side fence during the backswing and some point the string toward the back fence before dropping the racket.

Don't go too high or too far back with your looping backswing. That also can lead to late contacts, causing the ball to miss to the right. A simple loop will do to help generate rhythm and effortless power and to help deal with the high ball, this will also make taking the ball early much easier.

Drill of the week:

You can practice this feeding from a basket, or rallying with a partner, or both.

Using just the cross court half of the court (include doubles sidelines if you like), set yourself a goal of say 10/20/30/50 (depending on your level) consecutive strokes without error.

You can then get your competitive juices flowing by playing first to 11 or 21 points in a half court (cross court or down the line) using ONLY forehands.

Okay now, go practice.


Tip of the Week (Coach Dave): Why should my child use coloured tennis balls? Surely the sooner they get to full pressure yellow balls, the better right? Wrong! November 11 2014, 11 Comments

At Anyone For Tennis, we focus on helping your child train using the right coloured tennis balls in relation to their age and experience during tennis lessons.

Our tennis coaches are all mini-tennis certified and highly experienced in this area of the game. We believe that this is vital In order to speed up your child's overall learning process.

Each player will be carefully assessed by our coaches before being recommended on which coloured ball to start off with. 

 

The Mini-Tennis System using traffic-light coloured balls (Red, Orange, Green) has been in place in the UK since around 2000 and before that, there was Foundation Tennis using orange balls and Short-Tennis using sponge balls.

There are many other versions of modified tennis around the world, for example ITF Tennis 10s and the acclaimed Australian "Hot Shots" programs. All these modified versions of the game are designed to make tennis easier for kids to learn the strokes and have the ability to enjoy a match.

 

Smaller, Slower, Easier.

Mini-tennis is played on smaller courts and using smaller rackets that are more appropriate for a young child who is just starting to play. 

The mini-tennis ball bounces much lower than a traditional ball, enabling him/her to strike it at a more comfortable height as opposed to hitting most balls at head height or above. The latter often leads to extreme grips and poor technique, which makes it very difficult for him/her to re-learn at a later stage in their development, not to mention chronic injuries that can be caused by the heavy rackets and balls. 

 

Red-Orange-Green

Assessing children to the correct level under the age of 10 and using the right ball is where our tennis coaches have particular expertise.

Note from the diagram above that children can enter the system at any age.

For example, a beginner 9 year old would start on orange balls. However, a very talented and coachable 4 year old who started taking red ball tennis lessons and playing 2-3 times per week could easily progress through the levels quickly and be able to play green ball tennis by the age of 6.

A lot depends on the player's love for the game, co-ordination, athleticism and playing experience. 

 

Q: What if my child has always used regular balls? Does he/she need to go back to green balls?

As long as your child is technically proficient and can hold their shape while rallying at speed and under match conditions, there would be no need to move back. 

However, if put to the test and the tennis coach finds that the rally is breaking down after less than 5 strokes due to lack of fundamentals, then it would be beneficial in the long term to train with a more appropriate ball depending on their skill level.

This can often be hard to take for the player/parent initially, but they will quickly realise that the learning process is faster with a softer and more appropriate ball. A good point to note is that most under 10 competitions use green balls now as well.