I attended a clinic today, my third clinic with this group of 3.5/4.0 players. I've done a lot of clinics over the years, but today took the cake for strangeness. We were doing a drill where the pro was serving from the ad court, and I was his partner at net. Two other players were in normal doubles formation. A rally ensued between the pro and the deep crosscourt player. The pro lobbed the net player directly in front of him. This was a good lob. The net player can't reach it and calls a switch, and the deep player runs over to track down this ball, which bounces. Everything sounds normal so far, right? OK. My understanding about what should happen on our side of the net is this: I should shift over toward the center line and take a position at about the service line. If I see my opponent will have time to line up a drive, I might close a tad toward the net. If I see my opponent about to lob, I will stay at about the service line. Meanwhile, my partner who struck the lob should most definitely come to the service line, closer if it appears a drive is coming. Instead, the pro stayed back. He said to me after the point that I had missed an opportunity for a planned switch. He said that I should have taken off and crossed to the ad court, and he would switch behind me. This switch should happen *before* the opponent strikes the ball. I, totally confused, explained that I thought the deep person should simply follow their lob to the service line (or closer, for staggered formation). He said no, the deep person might not be able to get there in time, especially if she was deep in the court when she hit the lob. My question: Is there any advantage in doing it the way the pro suggests? I have to say, this explains a lot. When we have played games at the tail end of these clinics, I was constantly baffled that my partners were taking off to switch before balls were struck and were running across the court as the opponents were hitting. I never knew when my partners would do this, and I received no verbal command to switch. I mean, I'm all for poaching, don't get me wrong. I think it's dandy if the net player sees a floater in the opposite alley and crosses to get it. Taking off before the ball is struck seems bizarre to me. The lob bounced in the deuce corner, so the crossing player must get all the way over toward the alley to cover the line. Meanwhile, the deep player must cross and move forward and so has more distance to cover. (Or if the deep player stays at the baseline, the deep player is not being aggressive enough.) Not to mention that this planned switch has both players running sideways while the opponents are hitting, which is generally a poor idea. I don't get it.