She's 11 now playing 10U/12 Green Ball Graduates

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by seminoleG, Sep 10, 2013.

  1. seminoleG

    seminoleG Semi-Pro

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    Well we were considered "GAP" kids. Caught in the middle of the 10U Mandate.:confused:

    We took a year off and she's been playing these kids for the last 4 months, and FEASTING on them. She is not that good. Another dad told me don't waste my time, you haven't heard of these kids. They cannot play, and they have huge flaws.

    We went from 2000+ to ~200 National, ~400+ to 30 in florida.

    We played an event in Florida and beat the #5,#3,#1 seeds losing 3 games. All these kids have been winning events but against their 10U counter parts. These kids were playing 10U for a while. I figured maybe it was a fluke,

    So we went to Team ZONALs and played supposidly the best 10U graduates, and lost 5 games in 3 matches.

    These kids cannot move, judge pace, change direction, hit on the run, scramble...

    They can hit the hell out of slow ball headed right to them.

    So from my OWN eyes, I see a new issue for you Coaches, do you start at STEP 1?

    As I said on the FORUM before they closed the Jr FORUM, WHERE is the transition from Green to Yellow. It isn't as simple as GO PLAY!

    Better for me as my daughter jus turned 11 I can count on a Top 20 G12s National ranking thanks to 10U.
     
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  2. TCF

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    Hi seminole, hope you have been well. Same thing here. Lots of girls with amazing records in green dot 10s. But they get destroyed when they go to the 12s.

    I did see one exception though. A girl who started with orange ball 10s for 6 months, then green dot 10s for about a year, now just saw her in her first yellow 12s. She was amazing, moving great, hitting hard and accurately. So it can work. But her coach is this Serbian guy who stressed fitness, fundamentals, etc. So odds are she would have been just fine no matter what balls she started with.
     
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  3. Pro_Tour_630

    Pro_Tour_630 Legend

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    My 11 year old kid who is the poster child of green balls and tournaments galore since 7 just beat his friend who has been playing yellow since 5 with no tournament experience. On top of that The 11 year old no tournament kid with only yellow regulation experience is supper athletic compared to my lazy kid. Plays travel soccer etc... . He has better form and stronger more powerful strokes than my kid, huge serve etc.... He lacked tournament experience and did not know when to hit the RIGHT shot. My kid sliced and diced him, drop shotted him, brought him in lobbed etc... and of course pulled a one hook as all juniors do :) The kid did not know what hit him. He could not deal with one bad call and started hooking back and self imploded. My son handled the match like an experienced veteran tournament player. Now the father wants his kid to play tournaments and wished his kid played green. This was an experiment we both started when our kids were 7. So far four years into the experiment my kid is on top when it really counts, the big W. But who knows maybe in four years his kid will be on top. :shock:
     
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  4. lightthestorm

    lightthestorm Rookie

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    There's a 4th grade girl I know, 9 years old who has been playing only 12s for over a year now (started right before turning 8).

    Her dad didn't want her playing on smaller courts after she won the state championships, and coach agreed, so she went that route.

    Long term, it's been great for her. She doesn't usually make it out of the 3rd round in the bigger events (12s Championships this year, Zonals/Southerns 12s, STA lv 3-4s, etc.) of course, but she's showing a lot of remarkable talent. A lot more fluid than her 10s counterpart because these courts force her to move. Obviously, her height of 4'5 is getting to her at that level though

    Just recently, she won a STA lv 5 14s event.

    I think if your kid is showing a lot of talent at the 10s, play him or her up.
     
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  5. Pro_Tour_630

    Pro_Tour_630 Legend

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    just want to update our experience, we picked the super athletic kid with no experience and only privates for a doubles partner and it was evident that even though the kids serve amazing, he could not return a serve and just went all out,,,,,,,,, that experience especially doubles experience in tournaments count very much. You can have the greatest strokes and the fastest feet but if you do not know where and when to put a ball especially in doubles you are going to lose. Our kids played sectionals and got beat. maybe in a few years this kid will super seed everyone but everyone is also getting better.

    As for my younger 7 year old , he zipped through orange in 6 months and now only wants to play U12 regulation. He won few times and lost several times so my wife yelled at me and I put him back into orange. Well, it did not go too well, kid threw the match and walked off the court, said he does not want to play orange. So I guess green ball it is for now. Today, my 7 year old is playing team tennis and is beating everyone, they are using used yellow balls which IMO are nothing but green dots :) he does not know it, he is happy.
     
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  6. TCF

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    I am convinced that the type of balls kids used for training, equipment, even pure tennis skill and potential is of little predictive value in who will win in the lower age juniors. After being totally immersed in the junior 10s-12s the past 9 months I see the same thing over and over.

    The aggressive kids win. The kids that stand up for themselves as far as line calls and score disagreements, pump themselves up with 'come ons', and carry themselves confidently win. The less aggressive kids can only win IF they are twice as talented as the more aggressive kids. There is too much to overcome with the set up of junior tournaments.

    I can not even count the number of times I have seen more tennis talented kids just get overwhelmed by lesser talented, yet more confident kids. The dynamic of no coaching, no teammates, making own line calls, keeping own score, debating a bad call or wrong score, etc. makes young age group juniors unique in that many times the best players simply can not overcome the very aggressive kids.
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2013
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  7. Pro_Tour_630

    Pro_Tour_630 Legend

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    100% correct, it is maturity, with a big M. The kids that are beating my kid are 11 going on 40, my 11 year old is going on 2 :oops:
     
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  8. TCF

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    Thats a great way to put it, 11 going on 40. Its so true. The way juniors is set up with no supervision, the kids who are the most confident/mature have a huge advantage. They dictate the rest breaks, the score, the line calls, the pace, and many times the outcome, even over kids who have superior tennis ability in a supervised setting.

    I have a shy player who is very talented. I have seen her win a set 6-0 while a ref was standing there, totally blowing the opponent off the court. The ref left at the set break and she got dominated in the 2nd set as the other player was able to impose her will on pretty much everything. Like you said, its about maturity.
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2013
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  9. Soianka

    Soianka Hall of Fame

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    my only advice would be to stop referring to your daughter's accomplishments as "we" did this or "we" did that.
     
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  10. BMC9670

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    Are you saying the opponent cheated when the ref wasn't watching? If not, imposing ones will on the match (legally) is a good thing, no?
     
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  11. newpball

    newpball Legend

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    So all because someone never played with green balls? :twisted:

    Sorry, I find the story not credible, I think it is a made up exaggeration designed to make a point.
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2013
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  12. BMC9670

    BMC9670 Hall of Fame

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    I think the story illustrates the value of tournament experience more so than what ball was used. It's also not a credible "experiment" because there are too many variables - the ball, the different tournament/training philosophy, and the kids themselves.
     
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  13. TCF

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    Yes, the cheating is off the charts in the section from West Palm down to Miami. There are 50 academies in a small area, parents paying big money, and even level 7s are loaded with stressed out kids with helicopter tennis parents watching every move. The tension is crazy. These kids are under such pressure to win they resort to every tactic under the sun. No way a few refs can do much about it.

    When we travel to any other FL. section, 100% different story. Just great experiences in N. FL. and on the west coast. But the SE FL section is a real mess.

    Some weekends though you can get lucky. There may be 3-4 tournaments in the area and you can pick a field where the worst of the cheaters are not entered.
     
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  14. Pro_Tour_630

    Pro_Tour_630 Legend

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    correct my point went over the duds head big time
     
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  15. Pro_Tour_630

    Pro_Tour_630 Legend

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    update, 11 year old athletic kid with no tournament experience with perfect form with mega power lost to a younger 10 year old tournament green ball kid who moonballs and keeps ball in.

    another 10 year old tournament (two years) kid who just got off orange just kicked the crap out of my son 6-0 6-0. The kid was very patient and moved my kid from side to side until my kid buckled, he was not a moonballer nor pusher, his style was ala Murray. His footwork was smooth as silk, and read/reacted to my sons shots very early. He was very confident and Mature for his age, another 10 year old kid going on 40. So there you have it the mature/confident kid no matter what will win even if the opponent has twice the skill set.
     
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  16. TCF

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    100% agree. It is almost ALL about maturity and confidence at that age. Down here there are a few very tiny girls who win a ton in the 10s-12s. But they carry themselves so confidently. They march up to the table to get the balls, speak to grown men as equals, lead the way to the courts, dictate the pace of play, start with the "are you sures" from the first few called balls to establish the tone for the match.

    How long they can keep it up remains to be seen. The 2 who come to mind first are so tiny for their age that they will probably peak at 5'2" 95 lbs. But so far their confidence is winning them lots of matches.
     
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  17. newpball

    newpball Legend

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    Sure.......:rolleyes:
     
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  18. TCF

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    Why the snarky comment? Protour is a proven guy on these boards, knows a ton about equipment, and is very involved with junior tennis in the New England area. Everything he said is right on target with what I have also seen in my years around the 10s-12s.
     
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  19. newpball

    newpball Legend

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    Because the stories are exaggerated beyond belief.
     
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  20. Pro_Tour_630

    Pro_Tour_630 Legend

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    not to worry TCF, our in house expert has a 6 year old son that is going through this, he does not know what is going to hit him:oops:
     
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  21. Pro_Tour_630

    Pro_Tour_630 Legend

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    another update my second son who just turned 8 is beating midrange U12 girls using regulation, he is taking few games off his older brother already, he has one goal in mind and that is to beat his older brother, big difference in motivation, second son its always better IMO He decided he does not want to compete in U12 all on his own, he wants to do privates only, a loss is too devastating for him, so no green ball nor tournaments for my second son, oh well that is what he wants, not going to force him.
     
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  22. TCF

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    Thanks for the update Protour. Its all about letting them find what level of competition works for them. My girl was into the 10s-12s for a while but grew tired of the waiting around and 'are you sure' marathon matches. Some weekends you spend both Sat and Sun waiting and waiting, rain delays, schedule overload, and it takes all weekend to get a few matches in.

    The last few weeks she has been playing strictly practice matches with some boys at the tennis center. Her motivation and energy and rate of improvement is much higher than when she was doing USTAs every week or two.

    A few girls she knows are the 'queens' of green dots. They enter every green dot they can and win 4-0,4-0 against mostly beginners and seem to love it, even though there is no challenge for them. Other girls she knows enter G12s that are way over their heads and get crushed every week, but keep coming back for more. So they all respond to different types of competitive situations.
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2013
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  23. Pro_Tour_630

    Pro_Tour_630 Legend

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    I see your little one will play LM green, we almost signed up, when you are there I want you to check out our top player from NE and let me know what you think,
     
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  24. TCF

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    Yeah, I sent 3 emails to switch her to yellows and got no response, so I guess she will stay in greens. What age group is the player from NE in?
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2013
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  25. Pro_Tour_630

    Pro_Tour_630 Legend

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    just make sure they use green dots pressurized (wilson/ dunlop) and not the two tone stuff nor the prince green control, because the matches are played on hartru and in the morning if the conditions are damp and wet you little one is not going to have a pleasant experience. the ball will not bounce and will go dead, so slice city and drop shot to end points :)

    our kid is playing U11 regulation
     
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  26. TCF

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    I hear you. The green dots on Har Tru become a slice and dropper battle.

    We will check out your NE kid. Too bad you guys are not coming down, the site is only a mile from where we live and the kids could have hung out.
     
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  27. MarTennis

    MarTennis Rookie

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    Amen...

    to your sentiment. I know tennis requires a team, but the kids are not cyphers for our interests in their tennis.
     
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  28. TCF

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    I have to totally disagree. Tennis is a very lonely and isolating game. The kids already have to do everything alone, no coaches, many hours practicing vs a wall or machine, no teammates, call the lines, call the scores, argue with the bullies.

    In my experience the kids LOVE when a parent takes an interest and becomes a 'teammate' in the quest. Hardly any times in tennis where the word 'we' can be used....if a child decides to go full bore into tennis, aiming for a top scholarship or chance at the pros, and the parent spends all that money and time in support....you are dang right they should use the word WE every single chance they get.

    I have befriended the guy I used to butt heads with on this forum. After meeting and talking, lots of phone conversations, I must admit he was right about a lot of things. And his kid's results and development into an amazing player and person prove him right. One thing I noticed when I talked to them...the kid was the one saying 'we' about him and the dad....he loved having the parent in the trenches, emotionally and otherwise. And my own kid refers to our work together in the same fashion.

    But frankly, most tennis parents I have met along the way do not have that sort of rapport with their tennis kids. Its more of a boss-employee relationship or maybe a kid-nagging parent relationship. So in that context the use of we is lame. But in other parent-kid tennis relationships, the word we is the best description possible.
     
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2013
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  29. NLBwell

    NLBwell Legend

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    Good post, TCF
     
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  30. Tcbtennis

    Tcbtennis Professional

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    +1. As a parent with 2 competitive junior players, I know that this endeavor that they (we) are involved in requires a team. Football, basketball , track and field, soccer or baseball are heavily supported in the school. That is not the case with tennis. In order to improve to the best of your ability tennis requires private coaching, proper equipment, playing tournaments, and traveling. This is not achieved with the high school team but with the home team. It is an effort in which parents are heavily involved. It doesn't happen in a bubble where the parents throw money at the coach and hope that every thing falls into place. If your child is striving to play high level tennis (D1 college and/or professional) you are deep in the trenches with him/her. Their victories are your victories. Their losses are your losses. You high five and celebrate at those great wins. You prop them up and try to find the positive in those bad losses. You encourage them when they are in a little funk. You forgo getting together with friends because the kids have a tournament they will be competing in. The kids don't hang out with their friends because all their free time is spent in training or competing. It is a way of life. It is definitely, absolutely, without a doubt a we sport and I'm loving every minute of it.

    If you get a chance please read some of the articles this past week on Tennis Recruiting. They are highlighting the Blue Chip kids who are making commitments to college. Their stories are filled with how important the parents are as well as the coaches. Not every tennis parent is a raving lunatic.
     
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  31. crosbydog

    crosbydog Rookie

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    We (my 12 y.o. and spouse)are coming down (from the tennis desert we call the *******)Thanksgiving week so she can spend mornings at Solomon's and afternoons at Bill Clark's. It might be fun to get our girls together. A friend is loaning us their apartment in Fort Lauderdale.
     
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  32. TCF

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    That would be great. I will send you an email so we can arrange to meet up. We are about 40 minutes north of Ft. Laud but go down that way a lot.
     
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  33. topspinrj

    topspinrj New User

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    I have the same issue with my youngest daughter 8. She is definitely the most talented of the 3. She tried 12U tournaments this summer and had complete melt downs when she started losing. I waited a few months until she matured a bit and although she did not finish (had to pull her for behavior in the 3/4 match), she is starting to mature. I have to believe it is really tough to be so young and play against kids 3-4 years older than you.
     
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  34. NLBwell

    NLBwell Legend

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    My oldest son skied with kids several years older than him. He loved the skiing and loved being good at skiing but it was hard to fit in. Older kids often don't take well to younger kids being better than them. Not fun to be picked on.
     
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  35. Pro_Tour_630

    Pro_Tour_630 Legend

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    my kid is 8 going on 40, he is more mature and has more logic than me, he knows too much about life and tennis that is the problem, he is gifted, no tournaments means no tournaments for now, he is running the show, he saw what happened to his older brother and wants to go it alone,
     
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  36. Pro_Tour_630

    Pro_Tour_630 Legend

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    could not have said it better
     
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  37. Pro_Tour_630

    Pro_Tour_630 Legend

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    wish we can come down, next year for sure
     
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  38. ga tennis

    ga tennis Hall of Fame

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    Whats up Pro Tour and TCF!!!! How you guys been?
     
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  39. Pro_Tour_630

    Pro_Tour_630 Legend

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    miss you, sorry did not come down to Ga, overwhelmed with stuff, hard being a professional stringer, professional coach, dad, and keep my day job. I am building an indoor euro red clay court, i am done paying $40per for indoor fees.
     
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  40. ga tennis

    ga tennis Hall of Fame

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    SWEET!!!!!!!!!!!! We missed you!!!!!! How the boys doing?
     
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  41. TCF

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    Hi guys, good to see you here again. All is going well down here!
     
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  42. Pro_Tour_630

    Pro_Tour_630 Legend

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    my guy will be playing out of mirasol, email me so i can give you his contact, want you to check him out, we might be heading down there for the holidays,
     
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