Vic Braden Update

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by heretoserve, Aug 27, 2009.

  1. 5263

    5263 G.O.A.T.

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    Yes, some of these stunt type presentations really draw some questionable conclusions. Especially since you can stop the vid and see that he does
    "shoot the cannon from a canoe" in Braden's words, as he has lifted into the air in the film. Also it is quite obvious as you say, that creating 2G's of force on the ground in no way assures it will make it to the ball. There are a multitude of ways that the power can be lost along the chain up to the racket. Also if you took a high jumper and had him jump as high as he could and serve a tennis ball, the G forces would be greater than recorded here, but his serve would not come close in speed to what Tanner did. Using data in this way would actually support an inverse relation, which is clearly is not what Braden intended.

    I do think info from the plate could be useful, just not as presented in this vid.
     
  2. fruitytennis1

    fruitytennis1 Professional

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    You guys live tennis dont ya. Thats not a bad thing. Just saying.
     
  3. heretoserve

    heretoserve Rookie

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    Physics 101

    1. As Braden does say. Jumping to hit the serve is bad. If the force of the swing pulls you off the ground it's ok. In other words if your racquet has achieved maximum velocity before the force of the swing pulls you off the ground your not going to "be a toad".

    2. No where in the vid does he say that putting this much force to the ground must translate to racquet head speed(obviously). He only says that if you are swinging this fast you must be putting this much force to the ground. This is one reason they let ice skaters fight. There states don't ground them. So when they punch forward they move backwards, greatly diminishing force. Go ahead and throw on a pair of roller blades and see how hard you can serve.
     
  4. heretoserve

    heretoserve Rookie

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    Can you quote just a portion of some ones post? Thanks.
     
  5. heretoserve

    heretoserve Rookie

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  6. CoachingMastery

    CoachingMastery Professional

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    You can't really use the Braden "Cannon from the canoe" analogy when talking about jumping on a serve.

    First off, when jumping as one serves, the server is pushing off from a solid foundation...a canoe is sitting in a nearly frictionless pool of water.

    Second, sure a cannon shot from a canoe will propel the canoe in the opposite direction. However, if you were to propel the canoe forward in the direction of the cannon's trajectory, at a reasonable force, the canoe will slow, stop or may go backwards, depending on the amount of force from the cannon, the mass of the projectile, and the mass of the canoe. BUT the cannon ball will indeed be shot forward a very specific distance depending on very real quantitative units.

    Third, a cannon ball's weight, relative to the weight of the canoe is far more than the relative weight of a three ounce tennis ball against the weight of a moving racquet and the mass of the person holding the racquet.

    Fourth, the acceleration and mass of the racquet will already propel the ball forward with little reaction force to the body going in the other direction. A player CAN indeed serve a very high velocity ball wearing roller skates as long as the player accelates the arm without using the legs. While anyone knows that a good serve uses the kinetic chain with the legs being the first link, you can still generate a 100mph serve without the legs at all. (I've taught wheelchair players to serve this fast as well as demonstrating the serve from sitting on my knees and serving 105 mph.) I've also demonstrated a nearly 100 mph serve sitting in a office chair on wheels.

    Fifth: MOST EVERY TOP PLAYER TODAY IS IN THE AIR ON THE SERVE at contact.

    A very funny story about Braden telling his little Cannon from a canoe story was at a USPTA convention when after he said, "You should not jump when serving...you simply can't shoot a cannon from a canoe"...a fellow USPTA pro said, "Excuse me, Vic, but tell that to the Navy."

    Obviously you can shoot a very LARGE cannon from a very large ship. And yes, even the ship will have a reactive force in the opposite direction...but, the analogy of a canoe really has nearly no real validity when discussing the serve.
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2009
  7. teachestennis

    teachestennis Rookie

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    Dave, I second that. I often hear coaches say that the legs are the most important muscle in serving. I note you correctly mention they are the first link. I emphasize the triceps per MTM, which Oscar claims is usually neglected in teaching the kinetic chain and which Pete Fishcer explained to me he knew to emphasize when he raised two of the hardest servers on the planet.

    When I hear my students tell me the mantra "the legs matter most in serving" I then drop to sitting on my hind legs and serve a beautiful hard serve without even pushing down on the ground.

    Those two brothers that have some success in futures tournaments with that two handled racket (I like it as a teaching aid because it teaches to keep the strings behind the hand..it's an instant laid back wrist.... and I hit very well with it but someone stole mine) jump way into the air, about three feet. Running jumps are prohibited by the rules of tennis but you can take one step, I think, is the rule, before you jump. Bollettieri claims that the huge jump serve is the serve of the future.
     
  8. 5263

    5263 G.O.A.T.

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    what vid did you watch?
    rough quote, his scientist says "Action- Reaction....anything that goes into the ground, must go up to the racket, and vice versa."
    NO, that is not Vic, but his video and scientist. lets not split hairs.

    Vic also says himself, that Roscoe keeps his feet on the ground, which he does not in the vid.
     
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2009
  9. 5263

    5263 G.O.A.T.

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    Physics 102 I guess...
     
  10. heretoserve

    heretoserve Rookie

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    I think you guys might be reading into the whole cannon from a canoe thing a little to much. I think it might just be a nice nemonic device.

    I am well aware of how little the legs are involved in creating power on the serve. Less than 11 percent. I am sure Vic was doing the on the knees serve before any one here to demonstrate this. I have actually witnessed a 120 mph serve by a member of his staff myself from his knees. However notice you are still grounded when serving.

    I too teach wheel chair tennis and as I am sure you are aware after a player tosses the ball the tossing arm should immediately go back down to hold there left wheel(for a righty) to keep them from sliding out.

    I don't think any one is saying you cannot hit a hard ball air born only that if you would like to maximize your mph, NO do not try to jump on your serve!
     
  11. heretoserve

    heretoserve Rookie

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    I know what might be fun lets all post our serves and critique each other. Here's mine.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1zM5yRBjq1c&feature=channel_page

    Feel free to critique I am always looking for ways to improve.

    Yes I am airborne at contact. As I said before if the force of the racquet pulls you off the ground it's good. But you shouldn't leave the ground before your racquet reaches maximum velocity.


    Do any of you teach to jump on the serve?
     
  12. heretoserve

    heretoserve Rookie

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    The Battistone twins are who you are referring too. The certainly are fun to watch. I think the one who jumps on the serve could be hitting harder if he didn't. Check them out.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CQYOW1DlydU
     
  13. teachestennis

    teachestennis Rookie

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    Jeff, your serve looks awesome. I wouldn't change a thing. I don't teach my students to consciously jump, but I do teach them to find the ball by tossing it up and well into the court, and teach them to get that elbow up and then unfold the forearm as a lever unfolding, attacking the ball with the edge (Brent Abel has a great teaching video of Samrpas doing this) and then going up and to the right. I always emphasize hitting up. I don't always get players to severely go up into the air.

    I do use an aerobics platform (4 inches high) that I let the players serve off of and allow them to land square with their weight on the left foot, balanced carefully. I have a video of Federer serving off the same platform I use. Then I push the platform into the court slightly to have the player learn to jump onto the platform by doing repetitions with their serve motion without a racket in their hands. I want them to realize they have to go up and forward to find the ball into the court. Roscoe Tanner serves his way, Sampras serves his way. I don't try to force a certain way on any player as long as they get results. You get results with your serve many of my players would envy.
     
  14. CoachingMastery

    CoachingMastery Professional

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    The "force of the racquet" can NOT make a person leave the ground. There is simply not enough mass to accerate and then force a player to leave the ground.

    A player leaves the ground only one way: They push off with the legs. This is called jumping.

    The concept of jumping does not need to be taught one bit. As players develop speed to their serve, they almost automatically begin to employ the legs more and more. Sometimes, a student can be encouraged to get a deeper knee bend to experiment a more defined explosive push into the serve from the legs. But, in most cases, this is not necessary.

    Your serve does look good, however, and yes, you leave the ground.

    I remember Craig Harter, who with Roscoe Tanner had the fastest serve in the world. If Braden would have studied Craig, he would have nearly a 180 degree different opinion about the serve: Both at 128 mph, Craig tossed very high, had a slight knee bend, but exploded up to the ball unlike Tanner. He had exceptional upper body rotation which accounted for his power and racquet head speed. He did not toss with both arms going up at the same time at all.

    I played with Craig when I was in high school at Old Ranch Tennis Club. He was a bit older and his sister, Kathy, played for WTT, the LA Strings, back in 1975 or so.
     
  15. CoachingMastery

    CoachingMastery Professional

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    I conducted a tennis workshop with Dann Battistone, a few months ago. He was just recovering from a very bad flu...but, still was impressive. He hit with my 10 year old daughter a little and we played some doubles.

    I have the Natural, his two-handled racquet and have worked with Lionel Burt, who invented the racquet. Dann and Bryan both play great. But, I can assure you his serve would NOT be more powerful if he stayed on the ground. His acceleration, height at contact, and forward momentum is exceptional...all would be minimized by staying on the ground.
     
  16. heretoserve

    heretoserve Rookie

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    Sorry meant the force of the swing.

    "If Braden would of studied craig he would have nearly a 180 degree different opinion about the serve?"

    Just when you think you find a rational human being. Well it was nice conversing with you. This conversation is over.
     
  17. WildVolley

    WildVolley Legend

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    I'm sorry, but you are confused. The force of your swing didn't pull you off of the ground. Watch the video again. You went into the air because you pushed off the ground with your legs. The rest of the world calls this jumping, but for some reason I can't understand, tennis players are loath to call it jumping. You can't swing a racket hard enough to lift you into the air.

    Of course, the jump if properly timed should be part of the swing and should help load the shoulder and arm muscles and also propel your body forward and up.
     
  18. ubermeyer

    ubermeyer Hall of Fame

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    I know Vic well. My name is Vic Braden, go ahead and ask him if he knows me.
     
  19. CoachingMastery

    CoachingMastery Professional

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    Not sure what you mean here. I guess I interpret this as meaning I'm not rational?

    Hmmmm.
     
  20. 5263

    5263 G.O.A.T.

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    Your point was very rational. Vic based much of his findings on one example of serving and it turned out to be one that is somewhat rare on tour for some reason.
     
  21. heretoserve

    heretoserve Rookie

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    oooohhhhhhhhh ok. Your in St. George! I got it. I got it. lolololol
     
  22. CoachingMastery

    CoachingMastery Professional

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    Exactly right. Instead of looking at what the vast majority of professional players do, his teaching philosophy uses only one example that represents his methodology, as it applies to the serve...in this case.

    I'm not saying that everything that Vic says doesn't have some merrit, at all. Just that in some of his teaching mantra's, he tends to recommend patterns that have very little to do with what the top players are doing.

    Not sure what heretoserve is referring to. I have a pretty extensive history in both teaching very high performance tennis, but also knowing what Vic Braden teaches. I was the Head Pro at his flagship facility...though, I never taught the Vic Braden methods. (I ran the Club, not the College.) During those years there, however, I saw exactly how his teaching philosophy was grounded in similar patterns as this particular serve issue. (One of the main reasons I left to start my own academy.)

    Vic is a great person...with great personality and a gift of gab. Unfortunately, having such traits does not necessarily make one understand tennis and I definately have some issues with his teaching philosophies. But, then again, many pros do. Some people follow blindly, others discover discrepencies. This doesn't take away the fact that I and so many others respect the man.
     
  23. Bungalo Bill

    Bungalo Bill G.O.A.T.

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    Well that is good that you are encouraging Oscar to do that. I would encourage Oscar to do it anyway. We can't wait for instruction to be perfect. It isn't and it never will be.

    We have to view instruction like a player. There are going to be parameters around the instruction that keeps the instruction reasonable, purposeful, and creative. These parameters act as guages allowing for the player to grow within their natural abilities much like training a plant to grow a certain way and watering it. The plant ends up growing naturally, however, it grows naturally for its specific purpose.

    Instruction also has to be allowed to grow in and of itself. Variations should be allowed with emphasis in areas that are different than what another would focus on. For example, we can't squelch the S & V style of play just because it isn't in vogue in the pro game. We need to have good instruction for that style. We need to allow for coaches to say something wrong or misinterpret, however, we need to have a feedback system so that we can improve communications to these instructors to keep the misinterpretations and misconcevied ideas to a minimum. We will never be able to elminate this risk but we can control it.

    Twohanded forehand? Well, that is an instructional technique I would not teach. Just as I wasn't bought in on Bradens' low toss for the serve for everyone, I am not a proponent of the twohanded forehand. I can see it for people that want to learn it or just simply can't hit a onehanded forehand, I just would never have it as normal instruction. If a player wants to learn a twohanded forehand, I will send them to you. :)

    It is just a way to further our knowledge and develop some "best-practices" around. The advancement of certain technologies are allowing us to take a closer look at what we are teaching compared to what we know and make adjustments to it. That is all it is. It isn't about "they are old and bad, and we are good" which is what I have been trying to say all along.

    The problem is, we do not have a good foundation to communicate these best-practices to the coaches because of the fragmented tennis teaching industry that grew from the business models established. For that I blame the USPTA, USTA, PTR, etc...It is always a "WE ARE BETTER THAN THEM" or an "US vs. THEM" approach to certification and teaching.

    Best practices in each area of instruction should be flexible enough to get results through the people who choose to play tennis. There is no right or wrong within the best-practices although there will be differences. This has to be allowed because I for one would not want someone's model to be shoved down my throat! We need best practices on how to teach a volley. We need time parameters that help a coach see if they are getting results with a student in a specific period of time. This will help them make adjustments or seek help from a common body of knowledge to see if there is anything else he can use as an intervention to get it back on track.

    Dude, what is with the marching band, baton twirlers, and gymnastic cheerleaders behind you? You always talk like we are cavemen who haven't figured out fire yet and all these poor hungry people are sitting out in the cold because of the Dark Lord over them that doesn't allow knowledge to be shared.

    Look, when you keep posting about Oscar, Oscar, Oscar, all you are telling me is his way and everyone elses way sucks. You are repeating the exact thing Oscar hated when he got dished and no one listened to him.

    There are several finishes and ways to hit a tennis ball. We have the classic style. We have the WW style. We have the finish over the shoulder, rap around the neck, finish off to your side or elbow, we have the catch the racquet.

    Here comes General Patton and the fricking marching band again! Okay, I will reread your patriotinistic mantra while I play the link below. Maybe I will pick up the trombone and start playing with you. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=znEePD1nJxo

    Seriously, please put the bong down and back away slowly.

    It is the way it is and there was no conspiracy in the backrooms or the boardrooms. THe business model to grow this sports has reached its useful life.

    You best get it in your head that I am a proponent of good tennis instruction that allows a player to use their natural ability to grow in the sport of tennis. Instruction is not meant to stifle natural ability and growth, it is meant to shape it in a purposeful direction allowing the player to mature. And just as we have as many personalities and players in the game, so too we need a vareity of good instruction that uses a common body of best-practices to play the game. There is no right style. Let's leave that up to the player and the public. Our job is to provide solutions and a menu of choices. If a player is more suited to use the classic style for a variety of reasons, we need to have good instruction in place so that we teach that style quickly and effectively. If a player wants a more baseline game? We need to offer the same.
     
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2009
  24. CoachingMastery

    CoachingMastery Professional

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    Bill, yes I agree that there are many reasons why Vic or anyone else who has studied the game will express opinions and conclusions.

    And, certainly, while there are many people who might be able to accomplish his or anyone else's methodolgoy to reach high levels of skilled play, in my experience, sometimes a particular technique might be detrimental to players' success. You and I have discussed this in the past and both agree that some things work for the masses, some things work for the few...it is a great pro's role to find the methods that work for his students the best within that player's potential and desire.

    I don't always agree that using a single individualistic pattern, (when there are countless others doing something different as successfully or more successfully), is the way to train people. You can always take components from any individual and consider them in the overall training of students. And, there will be those who simply have the means in which that single form might actually be the best for that student. I think the saying, "necessity is the mother of invention" is applicable for many!

    Thanks for your input...always good and always very astute.
     
  25. 5263

    5263 G.O.A.T.

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    Is this your way of agreeing about how his conclusions were?
     
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2009
  26. Bungalo Bill

    Bungalo Bill G.O.A.T.

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    What I get tired of is someone like you twisting things or isolating things out of context on areas or issues you don't know about. Many instructors during those times changed their thinking on things when the sport evolved. Case in point Arthur Ashe. When it was brought to Arthur Ashe's attention that the arm pronates on a slice serve he didn't believe it. Arhtur was teaching people to hit a slice serve by supinating the forearm. Arthur based his assumptions on what he thought was happening. When slow motion video evidence revealed that the arm indeed pronates even on a slice serve, he changed his thinking and his teaching.

    Do you know who provided this evidence?

    There are many things that Vic has changed over time and that people have taken out of context and spread myths about such as:

    1. The low ball toss.

    2. The trophey pose.

    3. What was meant by serving with the upper body.

    4. And although, I have not heard the "canoe" thing, I have sneaky suspicion I know what was meant and its use and reason.

    It is people like you who simply want to point out the bad in what someone taught over the good. You probably can't provide one good thing outside "he was a nice guy" that Braden brought to the table. Many coaches have adjusted their opinions and take on the game after receiving new evidence. Many of them.

    The other thing I get tired of is you and Coaching Mastery dishing things that Braden has said, dismissing how it helped provide foundational knowledge to improve what we know today and failing to bring up the good things Braden provided.

    Should I disect publicly Dave Smith's book? I would be glad to and it won't be pleasant. Should I disect some of his articles, especially his "MODERN TENNIS" article and start slamming his take on things? Afterall, no coach has all the knowledge and many things said today will be adjusted tommorow.

    So what is it with you?

    You have not come close to doing what Braden has done in tennis and yet you sit back and act like the Grand Poobah dishing this and dishing that. Taking this thing out of context and the next thing out of contect. How many times do I need to disprove your take on things? I warned you about sticking to doubles. When you branch into subjects you dont know about, that is when I will prove your lies and myths wrong.

    Every single coach brings good things to tennis. Every one of them and if you can't balance your view on things then I will.

    I am about finished researching the low toss because both of you took it out of context and left out a lot of information around it. I am also going to research the canoe thing and try to call Braden myself, because I have a sneaky suspicion you are blowing that out of context as well. I just need to clarify some things first. I also am about done with the trophey pose thing because that is something I specifically spoke to Braden about for my own clarification but need examples to support it.

    Either way, I am going to bring all this information forward to show that both of you are completely out of line passing bad informaiton on about a coach that isn't here to defend himself. What is worse is one is the Senior Editor for Tennis One. So much for quality and professionalism.

    I am flat out tired of this - it's on. No more being nice anymore and supporting Dave's books and certainly no more trying to get you to stick to a topic you know about instead of wondering off spreading your grandious thinking.
     
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2009
  27. Bungalo Bill

    Bungalo Bill G.O.A.T.

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    St. George is also where Braden has his tennis college I believe. Sort of a coincidence that Dave Smith who has his tennis school there is downplaying the other school there. Or is it?

    "His teaching is all bad, (leaves out critical information) but Vic is a great guy."

    Yeah, right.
     
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2009
  28. CoachingMastery

    CoachingMastery Professional

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    Bill, I'm not sure what you are really getting at here. I've tried to be more than polite and even mentioned your input is valuable and has merit.

    I've never said his teaching is all bad...I've used a number of his teaching elements. But, I don't agree with a lot of other elments too. (Just as you have said you would slam my books and my articles...surprizingly counter to the world-wide positive responses I have received.)

    I guess I see what you really think.

    Any element of Braden's teaching I've disagreed with has been punctuated with indepth rationale and experience. Perhaps you don't see those statements.

    And, like a few other Braden followers, they equate disagreement with him as an attack on him. I've gone out of my way to express my respect, my admiration and my belief that he has done much to promote tennis and he is truly a genuine and sincerely nice man.

    So, thank you for clairfying your thoughts on me. But, please don't compare my program to his, (which at "his" he is only at for about a total of 20 days a year...not exactly a place where you can find Vic actually teaching for the other 340 days out of the year.)

    I am semi retired and don't teach near what I used to. If I have a competing program, then I have to laugh...They have 15 courts...I have 6. I teach only when I want to...not because I have to. Not exactly a comparison.

    I hope I have misread your intent. But, I don't think I have.
     
  29. 5263

    5263 G.O.A.T.

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    BB, it was not me that brought up this Braden vid with the canoe comment, it was heretoserve using it to show something (don't rem what now).

    I just commented on 2 things that were obvious to anyone paying attention, that were clearly off.
    The reason you can't just watch the vid and stick to the issue, is that using the vid, you can't refute either observation.
    If Braden is going to make these claims on vid, he has to be willing to face the reception good and bad.
    Just like if someone shows me I didn't get the vid right, I will admit that I missed that take on it.
    No big thing for me.
    So you can rattle your sword and stir up all the smoke and mirrors you want to, but anyone who is awake will see it for what it is.
    Did you even watch the vid?
    I don't care what you research up, the comments are based on what is said in the vid.

    What is it about working for Braden that creates such an irrational sheltering type response? I worked for super guy once who was the World's strongest man champion more than once, and super heavy wt power lifting world champion several times. IF someone now says he cut a couple of corners (putting it nicely) or some of his workout systems have since been proven inaccurate, am I going to attack them and defend him?? No, it's clear he is a legend and much new has been learned since his day. It's no fault of the person taking note of the current advances.
     
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2009
  30. Bungalo Bill

    Bungalo Bill G.O.A.T.

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    The reason why I am saying this is because I can find flaws in your teaching, writing style, and explanations just as you can in others and as you can in mine.

    I actually have studied the low ball toss. Although it isn't popular, it does not mean it is junk instruction. A long time ago, I took what Braden discovered in Roscoe's serve, a low toss with your racquet perfectly timed to meet the ball while it was suspended in the air, and duplicated it. It does work. It also improved my arm speed because if I didn't, the ball would be too low to hit it.

    It is also a great serve for older players with bad knees to use, because the emphasis is more on the upper body's motion rather then the leg thrust. However, coaches wanted to get that pro serve down to the lower levels even with people that have had knee replacements and such.

    The trophey pose is often taken out of context as well and now this "canoe" thing is a bit suspect to me also although I have not seen it.

    If you are going to point out the bad, you also need to point out the good and the many things tennis has benefited from although taken for granted. Vic Braden is first and foremost a researcher more than a coach of tennis.

    So to balance this thread, here are the things we have taken for granted that Vic Braden has contributed to tennis of which a lot of instruction was derived:

    Vic Braden has been a proponent of the following:

    1. Reasonable toss height is necessary to improve clean contact and timing.

    2. It is best to time your racquet to hit the ball at its apex for clean contact rather than waiting for it to start falling. Players have a two foot window before the ball starts accelerating and the chances to make clean contact diminish.

    3. Hit the ball with the racquet accelerating through a continuous motion for the serve. Not the trophey pose which many interpreted as a motion that is suppose to stop before continuing.

    4. Can't do anything extra with the ball for topspin so don't try to come over the top of the ball because the ball isn't on the strings for more than 4 milliseconds.

    3. Toss the ball out into the court for more power.

    4. Power in the serve is not in the legs alone so players do not need to jump more to get more power. Most of the power is in arm acceleration and workings of a loose flexible hitting arm. The legs are used to faciliate the kinetic chain and support coiling and uncoiling.

    5. Using the wrist excessively in the forehand as pros do is a myth. That Agassi used a "wrist release" into the ball which is now very common in today's strokes. Later the "educated wrist" was coined and is used today.

    6. Don't point at the ball with your finger for overheads. Use the non-dominate elbow to facilitate shoulder rotation and help with timing.

    7. The brain can not send sensory information to your hand faster than the ball is on the strings. By the time the ball has hit the strings, it is long gone before you feel the impact, so dont try to do anything weird with the ball.

    8. You are legally blind when the ball is about 5 feet from you. It blurs and is impossible for the human eye to pick up. So dont be discouraged if you cant watch the ball into the strings or see the ball come off the strings of our opponent which is too far away. The human brain can not calculate sensible information that fast.

    9. Go through the ball emphasizing clean contact and timing.

    10. Stepping into the ball does little to provide extra power but a lot towards your timing and allowing the kinetic chain to work better which will give you power.

    11. Develop consistent srokes and dont try to over power the ball. Just hit that same ol boring winner.

    12. Use your legs to provide lift on the ball. The net is higher than you think when you are at the baseline. Chair drill.

    13. For players that can not perform the split-step, use the quick studder steps to help you change directions when coming forward.

    14. On Eastern grips, lock the hand down so that the lower arm works as more of a unit and helps prevent elbow roll.

    15. Court design and ball retreival for continuous instruction.

    Although Braden stuck to his serve model in Roscoe Tanner, he really was on to something. I never took it to mean literally as some did but took it as an example we could build on while allowing for personal preferences, understanding, and evolution to take place. Braden also taught to a certain audience as well. Not everyone had healthy legs and bodies to imitate the violent serves of the pros. Many of them were performing waiter type serves and they were trying to step forward like a pitcher to get more power in their serves.

    Further, many of them were tossing the ball real high especially when Stefi Graff was in her prime.

    Most of the stuff Braden came up with was geared to his audience. The common vacationer that went to Coto de Caza for a tennis lesson.

    Also, a very intelligent and often under appreciated move was his use of humor when teaching a lesson. He didn't use humor because it was cute. He used humor because of what it did in the brain.

    You have to remember that Braden's background was in psychology.

    Braden used humor because of his knowledge of the fundamental role it played in positive emotions and nurturing cognitive development.

    Considerable research has been conducted to identify the relationship between an instructor's use of humor and learning outcomes. Humor is useful in facilitating attention and motivation and comprehension. Kaplan and Pascoe (1977) found students were able to improve retention when instructors used humorous examples by linking learning to the use of mnemonic devices. Jokes and anecdotes seem to provide a memorable context for student recall and incorporating humor in test items reduced the negative effect of testing situations.

    And please, a Braden follower? lol, now that is funny. I just don't like people like you not giving credit where it is due. As I said before. I am not a "Braden" follower, however, I do recognize that much of his research has propelled the so-called "modern" tennis and is a key ingredient whether known or not in how today's tennis is taught and played.

    Nobody compared the programs. I didn't say "well they teach the forehand this way, and you teach it this way." I just mentioned that he is in the same town which is coincidental to me that you are quick to say negative things in detail but nothing positive in detail, well, except that "he is a great guy."

    You haven't.

    My intent is to point out that I am growing tired of the negative spin people put when Braden is mentioned. It is crap. It is garbage. I don't give a darn if some of his instruction is off. Much of it is misunderstood. He has contributed a lot to tennis which is hardly mentioned.
     
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2009
  31. heretoserve

    heretoserve Rookie

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    BB email me and will have Vic get in touch with you ASAP.
     
  32. heretoserve

    heretoserve Rookie

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    I wouldn't get carpal-tunnel from these guys. Until they say names of kids that they started in tennis and now are national champions nothing they say matters. Send me an email and I'll tell you Dave's real history from St George.
     
  33. heretoserve

    heretoserve Rookie

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  34. heretoserve

    heretoserve Rookie

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    Actually you questioned the vid first. Not sure why?
     
  35. CoachingMastery

    CoachingMastery Professional

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    Bill, I guess the point I have is that I don't see "disagreement" as "negative". You seem to see a disagreement with Vic or with you as a negative, like it is an emotion.

    I've given credit to Vic for many things, (I appreciate your list, which I think is incomplete...but certainly touches on things he has promoted.) But, this is a forum which askes specific questions, sometimes, which I and other respond to in specific responses. I don't see why we have to list all the good things someone has done when talking about one thing that is being debated or discussed. I have always tried to descibe my convictions with logic and reason. My logic and reason may not be the same as yours. And I not only respect that, but I don't consider it negative as you seem to.

    You are so very well studied, obviously in Vic's philosophy as well as so many others. But, please, don't confuse a difference in opinion as a negative, emotional jab. I've seen you disagree with others, including myself, and have witnessed your own jabs and confrontational responses.

    Your own statement about "dissecting my book...and it won't be pleasant" certainly reflects your own negativity towards my efforts in helping others in tennis. While I've recieved hundreds of letters praising not only my work, but the effort I put into writing two in-depth manuscripts, I find your almost joy in trying to dismiss my efforts rather insulting. I don't know if you have ever written a text in trying to help other people in tennis or anything else, but let me tell you it not only takes a lot of time and effort, it takes a certain love for the game to do something that doesn't make you a lot of money compared to the time spent in trying to accomplish this task.

    If I've been guilty of saying a negative, subjective response to anything anyone has written here or in any of my articles I've written for ADDvantage Magazine, TNNIS & COACH, **********, The Tennis Source, (and, yes, I've had feature articles in each of these publications), then my first response is to say I'm sorry. It is not only NOT my intention to be negative, but in fact to be objective in my responses or in my instruction.

    I don't know if this note here will help you understand my point of view and my personal opinion of things, but I hope you will at least recognize that my intention has been always to first help others...and second to offer my opinion on questions asked...just as you do.

    I certainly have better things to do than to contribute to a forum that produces the kind of distaste that I obviously produce in you. It is not only not my intention, but it makes me simply not want to contribute here. One of the reasons I have not been around here is that it seems that so many posts start becoming attack points for so many. It not only gets old, but it is counter productive at best.

    Personally, I think my qualifications of producing several hundred top state, national and a few world-ranked players is respectful enough. I would think my coaching record in Southern Calif. and in Arizona of over 1000 team wins against fewer than 40 league losses over a 30 year period is some level of proof I know a little about coaching and teaching tennis. My over 150 published articles in various tennis publications should carry some level of recognition.

    Not sure what you have produced, Bill, (not to mention I offer my real name and not hide that from anyone here...If you remember once, we spoke on the phone and I promised I would not mention your name here...which I have not), but I do know that from your countless posts, you have a depth of tennis background that is respected. I have commented on this many times in many posts.

    I feel my own accomplishments should be recognized with a similar respect.

    But, whether I have your respect or not, I feel my responses have been conducted in ways that demonstrate some agreement with Vic and you and others....and some disagrement with Vic, you and others.

    I don't find that offensive, negative, nor done in poor taste.
     
  36. CoachingMastery

    CoachingMastery Professional

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    Among those I've taught, coached, or worked directly with:

    Debbie Graham #1 in the U.S. as a junior (2 years her high school coach)
    Suzanah Lee #1 from Korea (1 Year her high school coach)
    Steve Schultz Top 10 in So Cal. (2 years his high school coach)
    Paul Robinson Top 20 in So Cal. (1 year his high school coach)
    Cong Tran Top 20 in So Cal (2 years his high school coach)
    Bach Nguyen Top 30 in So Cal (1 year his high school coach)
    Katie Lankford Top 10 in Arizona (1 year her high school coach)
    Justin Pitch Top 5 in Arizona (2 years his high school coach)
    J.D. McDonald To 20 in Arizona (3 years his high school coach)
    Chris Jochum Top 20 So Cal (1 year his high school coach)
    Russ Brose Top 20 So Cal (1 year his high school coach)
    Hien Ngo Top 5 CIF (3 years his high schoool coach)
    A.J. Bartlett Top 5 Utah (5 years his club pro)
    Jessica Watts Top 5 Utah top 110 U.S. (2 years her club pro)

    In addition to these, I've trained hundreds of others in camps, clinics workshops, private lessons, and other learning environments.

    If you want documentations, I have over 40 articles written about me in the Los Angeles Times, the Orange County Register, the Arizona Republic, The Spectrum, and other documents.
     
  37. heretoserve

    heretoserve Rookie

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    HaHaHaHa..

    You need to read closer.

    So you have coached a lot of high school tennis. Not many top jrs I know go to there high school practice. I wonder if youre league match records count when your teams play each other?? You have been teaching 35 years and this is what you are presenting?

    Well I hope your at least a good mentor.

    I could name more world ranked players I have "worked with" then this list. I have been teaching 10 years.
     
  38. heretoserve

    heretoserve Rookie

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    Not sure what in the hell all those other things are but I would sure like to see how many articles you have in the La Times. Wait I'll look now!......................................................................................................................
    Could you post this fantastic article about your self please? I saw something but couldn't get to the article.

    Could you also post some of your research articles.


    Thanks!
     
  39. heretoserve

    heretoserve Rookie

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    Oh and Andre and Steffi are both members at RedRockCountryClub where I recently worked for a year. So I am their club pro(1 year).
     
  40. CoachingMastery

    CoachingMastery Professional

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    What is your problem? Am I attacking you? Have I accused you of something?

    Wow...you wanted to know who I've trained. I could list another fifty players who were ranked in the USTA that I've trained too.

    Most pros who have made it anywhere had more than one coach in their career.

    What's your point? That I'm not qualified to be an experienced instructor? Or do you have another agenda? Have you spoken at USPTA Conventions? Have you been a keynote speaker anywhere?

    A winner seeks ways to improve himself; a loser only tries to find chinks in the armor of others.

    Why don't you put your real name and where you teach now and who you have taught?

    I'm sorry you have such a chip on your shoulder...but I do see a trend.

    I think you really need to get a life.
     
  41. Moz

    Moz Hall of Fame

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    It's weird because you look like an adult in the video of your serve.
     
  42. smoothtennis

    smoothtennis Hall of Fame

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    Why is a 'professional' like yourself bagging on Dave in this manner? Isn't this the very thing you detest in others in reference to treating Vic Braden this same way? It is so confounding to watch our tennis 'professionals' sometimes.

    Dave seems to handle himself in a very upright manner on these forums from what I have seen.

    What is your point with Dave - either produce the expose, or be nice.

    And no, I don't own his book. But I do believe in treating people with respect.
     
  43. Bungalo Bill

    Bungalo Bill G.O.A.T.

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    Respect goes both ways. I dnt believe people (including Dave) have given Braden due respect. I think the opposite. Just because you say you give him respect but fail to provide insight and information to counter a negative post, is not giving a person respect.

    For instance, I can say I dont like certain things of what Braden says. That is because I also provide the good things that he says.

    If a person only presents the bad but not the good and then says "but I respect him." Is in my opinion a phoney and a BS'er. Period.

    There are plenty of things Vic Braden provided that have helped tennis immensly. I provide many in my instructional advice, in this post, and elsewhere. Many of these things we take for granted. Many of them are like the commercial that says "we don't make the clothes, we make what goes in it."
    • Knowledge of toss height and the physics of a ball picking up speed allows us to develop an acceptable range to teach tossing to a player.
    • Knowing that you are legally blind when the ball is 5ft from you helps a player track the blur without worrying if something is wrong with him when his coach say "watch the ball."
    • Knowing that the wrist release is what is actually happening and that it happens naturally can help a player increase power.
    • Knowing that stepping into the ball is more about timing than power, helps players do it so they can help their kinetic chain work better.
    • Knowing that the trophey pose is a detriment if taken literally can help a coach and a player realize that the serve is a continuous motion.
    • Knowing that arm speed is the key to more power in the serve, helps work on his kinetic mechanics to improve arm speed.
    • Knowing that the non-dominant arm folding into the body helps accelerate the hitting arm for power is a gem.
    • Knowing that you dont need to try to come over the ball to add topspin because the ball is only on the strings for 4 milliseconds is priceless.
    • Knowing that jumping to increase serve speed is futile, leg thrust adds a small percentage of power and compared to the arm. Therefore, we can stop trying to do something with our legs that it can't provide and do something with our legs that it can provide, like better timing, improved kinetic flow, support for improved rotation.
    • Hit up on the ball and watch the blur!
    • Knowing that developing a rally stroke will improve consistency.
    • Tossing further out in the court is good for power.
    • If you can't do the split-step it is acceptable to perform studder steps as you move towards the net.
    • Tracking the ball for overheads from you opposite elbow pointing up is better than pointing at the ball with your finger.
    • Footwork is essential to better tennis
    • When using an Eastern grip, lock down the hand to sync it with the elbow.
    • Keep your elbow close to your body when volleying.
    • A good volley can be made using Eastern grips.
    • Swing through the ball and out toward the target before breaking off to your followthrough.
    • The human brain can not process information quicker than the ball is on the strings.
    • The ball is on the strings for only 4 milliseconds.
    • State of the art facility in Coto de Caza during its time. Developed a way for balls to be continually fed to pros to keep the lesson going
    • Used humor to improve a players ability to retain information.
    • Taught his instructors to play with the opposite arm until they reached a 3.0 level so they could understand what a beginner went through.
    • Was a proponent of the forward game and the all-court game.
    • Showed why players can get to net quicker by using neutral or forward stances vs. open stances.
    • Taught the importance of using your legs to help with ball lift.
    • Taught early preparation.
    Throughout the posts I provide, many of them had fundamental timeless principles I learned from Braden. It was common sense stuff. And as I said, I dont agree with all of his instruction. However, the things I don't agree with I make sure I keep it in context and try to understand where the person is coming from before I disagree publicly.

    I simply do not take a sentence in a book and hold someone to it forever. That was my point about reading Dave's book and finding poorly communicated information and holding him to it forever as well. Even after he has gone on to explain what he meant further.

    Taking a few examples, and turning into something they are not is what I have heard from these two. It doesn't matter to me if they said it "lightly" or pointed it out "professionally", if all you do every time a Braden thread comes up and say "yeah, he was a goof on that stuff" and never ever point out what he contributed, sorry, but I dont think that is respectful.

    Even Pat Dougherty who was itimately behind the Bollettieri videos was disrespected here by people like 5263.

    People like John Yandell has been disrespected in his analysis of information from people like Pushing who called him out on something ridiculously stupid.

    I dont just backup Braden, I also backup these people because I ask myself, "what the hell have you done better?"

    It is not fair to dish on someones instruction that you dont like without providing the good. If Yandell and I go around and around on something, he also knows I publicly support and encourage the things I do agree on in his instruction. And there is more good than bad!!!! Sometimes what I dont agree on was simply a misunderstanding!

    No, sorry, the OP was right in calling this out. There are a ton of little gems in Braden's teaching if one is willing to accept it.
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2009
  44. smoothtennis

    smoothtennis Hall of Fame

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    He may be ok Bill, it's the manner in which he called Dave out - not the content. There is a difference.
     
  45. Bungalo Bill

    Bungalo Bill G.O.A.T.

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    I think he is fed up like I am fed up. I can see it from his side. In the past, the same thing happened and he wasn't a part of the debate.

    People calling out Braden's mistakes without giving credit to what he has contributed?

    I can say this only because I sprinkle a lot of Bradens research with my advice. I do feel the game has moved on or broadened from the come forward game Braden promoted a lot to a baselineish game.

    I took a lesson from Braden just for kicks about 5 years ago, he filmed my stroke as normal and I used the SW grip and open stance to hit my forehands. He didn't say a word about it but instead focused on how my rotation was slightly moving away from the ball.

    Serves as well. He was focused on how my legs and torso could provide additional energy to my arm to speed it up. He didnt say "use your legs more" for nothing, he knew that the arm is what provided the majority of power and nothing else and he tried ot make it go faster. Here is an example:

    This is a study from an article in Popular Mechanics (http://www.popularmechanics.com/outdoors/sports/4221210.html):
    [​IMG]

    I think the people who appreciate what Braden provided are the ones a bit annoyed by certain peoples position on things and I think balancing things out against these people is healthy, proper, and right no matter how emotional the debate ends up being.

    You have to realize who Braden is. He is a researcher first and foremost. He is constantly coming up with and testing new ideas. Some of those ideas are useless or to some like 526-ZERO stupid, dumb, and "out of touch". Sorry, but a researcher is gonna come up and test some "bad" ideas or ones that dont catch on.
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2009
  46. heretoserve

    heretoserve Rookie

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    I certainly apologize for what seem like attacks on Coaching Mastery. But I'm sorry any one who makes a completely off base comment like this needs to be stopped. Vic has done countless studies of hundreds and hundreds of tennis pros serves. Including Billie Jean, Jimmy Connors, Tracy Austin, Ilie Nastase and on and on and on. That's just the old days. Him and his camp continue to do research projects on current players such as Roddick, Federer, Bryans etc, etc, etc. We should for sure stop speaking in the past tense as Vic is on top of all modern techniques.

    I think Dave is well aware of this. So the question is why lie? Well the truth is Dave's main competition in St. George is the Vic Braden tennis college. His unwillingness to respond to any of these comments is evidence that there are other motives involved here.

    I do not know the circumstances of which he left Green Valley but I really don't think it was because of Vic's teaching "philosophies". I could find this out with one phone call by the way. Working with Vic was important because he was doing advanced research that I had access to. He doesn't even have a philosophy. I have certainly never heard of any one not wanting to be involved in that. And if they didn't it shows there character.

    I simply feel bad that your forum has been hijacked by people plugging there own products. You want to sell books and plug websites that's fine. But until you have put in any actual research on the game your not a researcher. So instead of saying that other peoples research is wrong show your own. I love learning about our wonderful game.

    My apologies again. I to was exited to see Coaching Mastery's seemingly unbiased comments in other post. I'm sure he is a good person. As I said in the original post I am good friends with Vic and know what he has contributed to tennis. He as well as myself are completely open to counter research. However your opinions are not research.
     
  47. heretoserve

    heretoserve Rookie

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    Yeah I have seen Vic find that primary flaw hundreds of times and just help peoples games immensely with just a couple comments. It's very cool. Thanks for pointing that out.
     
  48. smoothtennis

    smoothtennis Hall of Fame

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    That's a professional response. Nice tone, facts and disagreements still there, but much better tone. Not trying to critique guys, I swear, but I hate to see pro's start posting like the common layman with nothing at stake.

    Let me mention to you and Bill, I learned my grips, and all my first tennis from one of Vic Braden's books at the library when I was just starting out. I would take it to the court with me (yeah, seriously, LOL). I always took from Braden whatever was there of value to me, and appreciate not just the man, but the information he provided, modern, old, new, whatever - much of it helped me when I had nobody to learn from.

    I also learned more later form Yandell's Visual Tennis, although I have opted for the more modern stroke mechanics these days.
     
  49. Bungalo Bill

    Bungalo Bill G.O.A.T.

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    Hahaha, I am not so "professional".

    Maybe it is time to disect Smiths book. Let's examine it in the real spot light, critics and all.
     
  50. Bungalo Bill

    Bungalo Bill G.O.A.T.

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    That is exactly what you do. You take what works for you and ditch the rest, next instructor. I am sure it would be much appreciated to think that you take only what is mentioned by your favorite instuctor. However, that isn't reality in playing nor in coaching.

    I laugh when Dave says I am a "Braden follower". What misinformation that is when I have learned and gathered various gems from a lot of instructors. Including coaches that aren't part of the game of tennis!

    I also have never gone on record saying I follow only one set of instruction or methods. That is just silly words being put in someone's mouth.

    I simply appreciate what the Braden did and still does just as much as I appreciate what John Yandell did and is doing, or for that matter Will at FYB!
     

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