WB Comments on Ltr to US Tennis Industry-PART I

Discussion in 'Junior League & Tournament Talk' started by HIGH-TECH TENNIS, Oct 9, 2012.

  1. Soianka

    Soianka Hall of Fame

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    Vicky Duval's parents are both doctors, so I don't think they fall into the category of many other parents.

    And yes, I know of some people who have gotten free training because their children showed promise at a young age.

    I know of some others who are very good athletes but never made it that far and it was because of money. One girl made it to 4 star level and is playing DI tennis but I know her parents struggled with providing shoes, strings, lessons, etc. She is a tremendous athlete and excelled in track and field and did well in tennis, but I think college will be as far as her tennis gets because her parents did not have the money to go further early in her tennis life.

    There must be hundreds of similar stories.

    I would venture to guess that kids who get "gobbled up" and get free training and equipment are a fraction of the talented athletes whose parents simply cannot afford training and were not in the right place/right time to be offered such things.

    I've also noticed that a lot of the people who get such offers have boisterous parents who are good at marketing their children. Good example - the Parks Sisters.

    Those parents are over the top with their proclamations, starting a website when the girls were very young, boisterious, obnoxious, etc -- and the girls got free training, equipment sponsors, and are very good players who may have a shot at the pros.

    But when I knew them as little girls, they did not seem more remarkable than many other little girls with normal parents.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2012
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  2. Soianka

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    I say all of that to say, cost is a prohibiting factor for American juniors.

    I don't think all of the players with talent and potential find sponsors early on.
     
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  3. tennis5

    tennis5 Professional

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    I think those two really hit it on the head.

    1) Cost - astronomical if you play indoors.

    TCF says if you are talented, some academy will pick you up....
    But, let's be honest, not every academy is the same.

    So, the gold standard would be for me Bolliteri, if they would pick you up for free.........

    But, for the 99% of the other kids, most are going to have to pay for it.

    And to get to the Bolliteri level, unless your dad or uncle is a pro, you have to pay for the beginning.

    2) At the high school level, tennis is not cool.
    Football, basketball, baseball, lacrosse, ice hockey - so much cooler and fun as it is a team sport....
    Friday night football - big deal with the social aspects.
     
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  4. valsmokes

    valsmokes Banned

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    Yeah it was cheap and many kids play there compare to here in USA. I am not sure about public courts. These were semi public they belong to the city and if you want to be a member of these courts there is anominal city fee per month.
     
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  5. coaching32yrs

    coaching32yrs Semi-Pro

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    You need a good frame of reference to see the athleticism on the high school football and basketball teams vs. the athleticism of the top 25 ranked sectional players. You had to play or coach football or basketball. The top 25 sectional players are good tennis players but are not, as a whole, elite athletes. There may be 1 or 2 exceptions. Conversely, the athletes at the skill positions in football and virtually all the basketball players are elite athletes- much better than the tennis players. For tennis players to get to the pro level they must be blessed with superior one in a million athleticism.
    80% of the top American junior boys just don't have it. It doesn't matter how hard they train.
     
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  6. TCF

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  7. Number1Coach

    Number1Coach Banned

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    You reallly believe that ? Most people thought when they were voting for obama they were getting Kobe , we got a guy that is way underqualified because he has never put a day of work in in his life .

    Do yourself a favor get out a dictionary and look up the definition of what and athlete is not your made up version .

    Our problem in the USA any kid with talent for tennis we tell him to go to college where it is set up to make you fail at going pro .

    BTW I have been to skid-roe and have seen a lot of these so called athletes living out of shopping carts and none of them can run the 40 in a sub 5 second time , because they dont fir the definition of and athlete.
     
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  8. TCF

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  9. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    85? I paid 85 once in Maui at a resort because that was the only way I could get on the courts.

    Over here, club pros start at 50 and go up to 75. The elite ones in other clubs are more expensive.
     
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  10. Soianka

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    Of course money is a factor in success in tennis.

    You have repeatedly said Deiton should go to college because his father does not have enough money to support him in the futures and challengers.

    Do you really think if we chose 2 or 3 guys from the futures circuit and paid their travel, coaching and tournament expenses that we would not greatly increase their chances of success on tour?

    I am talking about juniors whose names most of us would never know because their parents never put them in a position to be able to get to elite status because they could not afford top coaching, tournament fees, travel fees, and equipment.

    Sachia Vickery's mother worked 2 jobs in order to keep her daughter in high level tennis. The girl travelled by Greyhound to tournaments instead of flying.

    Sachia is a big talent but obviously money was an issue for them. There was no one throwing money at them to pay for her training and travel expenses. Her mom had to sacrifice time with her daughter and work in a dangerous environment just to give the girl the bare minimum so she could train at an elite level.

    Obviously, there are some families not even in a position to do that...so money matters.

    Either way, this is an empty challenge because as soon as we name someone...you are going to say that that person sucks and your 8 year old daughter could beat them. :)
     
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  11. Rktennis1

    Rktennis1 New User

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    I've worked with a lot of good kids and in no way do I think money is the issue. Trust me, no club or teacher is going to turn away a potential professional tennis player because of lack of funds. Having a kid like that brings in 20x more juniors and publicity. Heck, a lot of the good kids at academies dont have to pay because they bring in other kids. Now, I'm sure their are a lot of kids playing small college or mid major d1, they could have been great college players but couldn't afford the grind. I was one of those kids. But truly elite potential gets noticed and wouldn't be turned away.

    I do think "tennis" in general gives off an expensive vibe to low income parents , so they choose to never even start playing. This perception is probably untrue, but very real. I have parents all the time just assume they cant afford before even looking into it.
     
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  12. Soianka

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    Then why did Sachia Vickery's mom have to work 2 jobs to support her daughter's tennis when her daughter was already the #1 14 year old in the country?
     
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  13. Rktennis1

    Rktennis1 New User

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    After writing that even I forgot how much travel costs...so yeah that is tough. So, I quess I could say the instruction is always there for low income families, but all the travel and etc.... I could see that being a barrier.
     
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  14. Tennishacker

    Tennishacker Professional

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    When the kids are young/starting out, the costs aren't too bad, but when they start playing competitive tournaments, that's when thing get really expensive, GAS, hotels, food, time off from work...
    Junior tennis is a year round sport, most months you have tournaments every other week, plus national tournaments.

    Huge time commitment for parents to shuttle kids to tournaments.
     
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  15. TCF

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  16. TCF

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  17. Rktennis1

    Rktennis1 New User

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    TCF, I Dont disagree with you. From my state Indiana, we have two of the best players in the country. One wealthy, one not. So, I agree. If the talent is there, the money will be too. I didnt realize the vickery girls mother probably needed two jobs anyway to pay for things, regardless of tennis. No one put that in context for me.
     
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  18. Soianka

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    Her mother said she specifically got a 2nd job as a bartender in a strip club to pay for her daughter's tennis expenses.

    <sarcasm> How come the 3 coaches didn't recognize Sachia's talents and agree to work for free? </sarcasm>

    Isn't that the way it works in your fantasy?

    You also need someone to recognize the talent and be knowledgeable enough to develop the talent.

    I know a couple of local players who I am convinced would be world class if they had the proper training early on.

    They are big, strong and fast but ended up working with local coaches who frankly are not good enough coaches to develop to a player to an elite level.

    The examples of poor kids who have "made it" (because they were discovered by the right person early enough or because their parents were exceptional promoters or because their parents sacrificed and worked extraordinarily hard) are exceptions to the rule, not the rule.
     
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  19. Rktennis1

    Rktennis1 New User

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    You say you saw the potential of some kids that could have been world class. If only they had better coaching.... Not saying you're wrong, but predicting world class is nearly impossible. So many things have to go right for that to happen.
     
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  20. cmb

    cmb Semi-Pro

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    and elite training is even cheaper in france. you guys will think im lying if I tell you the truth
     
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  21. ClarkC

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    The above quotes are provided as reading comprehension quiz material for any juniors who are currently preparing for the PSAT, SAT, or ACT. But I have to forewarn any junior players who are reading that the test makers are not kind enough to use bold font for the key sentences.
     
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  22. TCF

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  23. coaching32yrs

    coaching32yrs Semi-Pro

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    Some of the posters on this thread don't understand the realities of tennis. I believe they never played and competed in the sport at a high level. They freely throw around terms like could have been an elite player or world class player. They don't get it.....there is one young American male in the top 80. There are no world class players in this country who just didn't get the right opportunity and coaching. The academies and training programs are starving for top players, because they believe it attracts other full paying juniors. My player, a 4 star not an elite athlete, was offered a scholarship at a tennis program- and he didn't even ask for one! I know one player, a 3 star, training on a full scholarship. Most of the programs have 3 or 4 levels. One or 2 kids at the very top helps fill the lower levels with full paying customers. Tennis parents wrongfully believe their junior will get so much better hitting with the hotshot junior in the area.
     
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  24. TCF

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  25. Soianka

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    Reading comprehension or perhaps inventing a story to fit ones absurd contention.

    I guess some of us might believe that Sachia Vickery's mother worked 2 jobs so that she could pay 3 coaches because she didn't want to accept free training.

    However, in reality she actually did accept free training but it was not enough to get Sachia to the top levels of tennis and they could not afford elite level tennis without an extraordinary effort (2nd job as bartender in sketchy place, missing time with children, etc).
     
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  26. Soianka

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    Yep. Kind of like the father who claims his 7.5 year old can beat the nations top 12 year old.
     
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  27. Soianka

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    Your player was offered a scholarship years after training at a high level.

    How about the kid who is a track star, excelled in soccer as a young kid (father is a soccer coach) and plays tennis but has only been coached by her parents until age 8 and then the local community tennis center coach who does not teach solid fundamentals and footwork, and does not get decent training until she is in her late teens; yet she makes it to a 4-star level, and is currently playing DI tennis.

    But I guess you would have us believe that this kid would only ever be a DI player even if she had an excellent coach starting at a young age....because of the example of "your player."

    I'm sorry your reality is not the same as it is for everyone else.

    There is no need to condescendingly dismiss other people's experiences because they do not match your own.
     
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  28. hound 109

    hound 109 Rookie

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    This thread was hijacked 3 pages ago. Lots of good points....only one political comment....but a d*mn interesting original post was snuffed out & hijacked.

    fwiw, I disagree with 30% of Wayne Bryan's opinions. But I recognize his experience & the road he has traveled as a player & parent..... & I admire his huevos.
     
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  29. Stokke

    Stokke New User

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    Federer, Djokovic, Murray and Nadal all played tournaments at 12. Who are all these top players who waited until 14 to compete?
    As kids they worked on their athletic base AND winning 12s-14s.

    An elite 12 year old soccer player would, here in Europe, be someone who gets to train with one of the major football clubs. Rest assured - they have no time for tennis.
     
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  30. TCF

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  31. TCF

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  32. TCF

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  33. Soianka

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    The point is, you thinking your 8 year old daughter can beat the country's top 12 year old (by ranking) is evidence of (to quote you) "the mind of a delusional tennis parent"
     
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  34. TCF

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  35. coaching32yrs

    coaching32yrs Semi-Pro

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    When you have played thousands of matches under pressure you reach a certain level of understanding about the game. You can tell who has walked the walk. When you talk to a college coach or teaching pro they can tell you are one of them. You are an "insider" and get treated and talked to as such.
    I am sorry if you find this condescending. But it is true in tennis as it is in any industry. Many on this thread are not insiders. They try, but they can't fake it. They have never played the game at a high level. TCF is an insider, as is that crazy guy who is a medical student. You can tell. TCF drank the kool aid about his daughter. That's OK. We all did that. That's why we are on here.
     
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  36. TCF

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  37. Soianka

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    You described yourself as a "4.5 level" player.

    I don't think that exactly qualifies you as "one who played the game at a high level"

    or a tennis "insider," LOL

    I never claimed to be a tennis expert or "insider." One need not be one to offer their personal observations.

    By the way, these observations were shared by an actual top level high performance coach who coached girl referenced above later in her junior career.

    Same guy who developed Grace Min and a host of other top female juniors. But I am sure you know better having never even seen the girl I am talking about play.

    I bow to your expertise. Oh, great tennis "insider."
     
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  38. tenniscp

    tenniscp Semi-Pro

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    I am now convinced that Number1Coach lives on under the new name "TCF" , however this time the prodigy is a little 8 year old girl!

    "My oversized and super athletic kid who has been hitting tennis balls since 18 months and now trains with college players and other adults" Where have I heard that before? Brad Baughman comes to mind! He should come on this thread and promise TCF a D2 scholarship and their TW relationship will come full circle.
     
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  39. Stokke

    Stokke New User

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    Yes, that was my point. They played tournaments at age 12.

    They sure did. Again, my point was that they played tournaments at age 12.

    Sounds like a winning formula: Play different sports - and compete from an early age.
     
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  40. slice bh compliment

    slice bh compliment G.O.A.T.

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    Okay, I see your point, but the man has been coaching for thirty-two years. So he's got to be in his mid-50s.
    A good college player, 30 yrs removed from college tennis will probably be fine with relegation to the 4.5 level. There are many good 4.5s who could probably give him a great workout.
     
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  41. coaching32yrs

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  42. Soianka

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  43. TCF

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  44. TCF

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  45. coaching32yrs

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    Soianka I don't know what you are talking about or why you are attacking me. I'm here to help and learn. I am not commenting on the particulars of any coach or any player. My comments about coaching are in a general sense. In the vast majority of cases, not all, you can't accept 100% of what any coach says. I had differences with own kid's coach and he was and is a terrific coach. Sometimes the in game coaching in particular does not make sense. I wish someone had told me when me I was young to respectfully ignore in match coaching- unless it affirms what you were already thinking or makes good sense to you. Someone here told me about the app Coach's Eye. Great idea. Let's here some more stuff like that.
     
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  46. TCF

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  47. Soianka

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    LOL. Perhaps you should revisit your earlier post with your rude and condescending tone. Maybe then it will be clear who was "attacking" who.

    Your above post was not about learning and teaching.

    You have no idea what other people's experiences are and there is no reason to tell someone what you think their experiences are and what they do not "understand" or do not "get" and then tout yourself as a "tennis insider" in order to shut down the conversation with your authority as the last word on the topic.

    It's actually quite humorous that you are now trying to pretend that I sought you out and attacked you.
     
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  48. Soianka

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    Except I don't think anyone has argued that Abby is the best 12 year old in the world or the best 12 year old in the country.

    It's just that no one here believes that an 8 year old is going to be able to beat her.

    And most people don't seem to think Abby is as terrible a player as you seem to claim.
     
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  49. TCF

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  50. ga tennis

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    I haven't seen Abby play live before but i have seen her results.I know she beat a little girl i know that can straight up ball.The girl im talking about would not lose a game to any kid younger than 10.
     

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