Talk Tennis

Talk Tennis (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/index.php)
-   Junior League & Tournament Talk (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/forumdisplay.php?f=36)
-   -   When to pull the plug (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=435107)

crosbydog 08-06-2012 01:06 AM

When to pull the plug
 
My 11 year old has been taking privates once a week for a year now from the relatively best coach in our area. We have shlepped down to Florida a couple times for her to take 4 lessons with a name coach. She qualified for her section's sweet 16 tournament in the 10's after Playing a year but now in the 12s she can only beat mediocre or younger Players. After spending a ton of money on 3 lessons with a name Florida coacher his week she again beat a mediocre player and a 10 year old, 4th and 5th seeds, in a Local Florida tournament until she lost in the back draw semi finals to another mediocre player from Venezuela. So my question is when do you pull the Plug and move on? She is somewhat driven and does want to improve and says tennis is her sport. (she does volleyball too for the camaraderie but can't make the select teams) Is she washed up in tennis at 11? Is she doomed to mediocrity because we live in the ******* and there are no good coaches? Except the #1 G12 is from Ohio :-(

chalkflewup 08-06-2012 04:10 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by crosbydog (Post 6785898)
My 11 year old has been taking privates once a week for a year now from the relatively best coach in our area. We have shlepped down to Florida a couple times for her to take 4 lessons with a name coach. She qualified for her section's sweet 16 tournament in the 10's after Playing a year but now in the 12s she can only beat mediocre or younger Players. After spending a ton of money on 3 lessons with a name Florida coacher his week she again beat a mediocre player and a 10 year old, 4th and 5th seeds, in a Local Florida tournament until she lost in the back draw semi finals to another mediocre player from Venezuela. So my question is when do you pull the Plug and move on? She is somewhat driven and does want to improve and says tennis is her sport. (she does volleyball too for the camaraderie but can't make the select teams) Is she washed up in tennis at 11? Is she doomed to mediocrity because we live in the ******* and there are no good coaches? Except the #1 G12 is from Ohio :-(

I think some soul searching needs to be done...

What do you mean by pull the plug?
If she loves it, why move on?
Do you believe her level of play has stalled because of where you live?
What are her goals for tennis?
Are her goals aligned with your goals?

Doomed to mediocrity is a bit strong in my opinion. If my kid was mediocre in something that he/she loved, then they're a champion in my book.

crosbydog 08-06-2012 04:48 AM

Pull the plug = stop throwing good money after bad
Her goals are to be a pro and recently to play in the Olympics
My goal for her is for her to qualify for a
national tournament and eventually be #1 in her age group (whenever)
The "best" coaches in my area don't give the rapid fire feedback of a Rick Macci and her current coach's best two students are "just" top 50 boys 14 and top 90 girls 12s. I do think the coaching is less than stellar but my spouse is knowledgeable about tennis technique but that hasn't helped. I'd move to better coaching but until she dominates in her district then her sectional...

andfor 08-06-2012 04:55 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by crosbydog (Post 6785898)
My 11 year old has been taking privates once a week for a year now from the relatively best coach in our area. We have shlepped down to Florida a couple times for her to take 4 lessons with a name coach. She qualified for her section's sweet 16 tournament in the 10's after Playing a year but now in the 12s she can only beat mediocre or younger Players. After spending a ton of money on 3 lessons with a name Florida coacher his week she again beat a mediocre player and a 10 year old, 4th and 5th seeds, in a Local Florida tournament until she lost in the back draw semi finals to another mediocre player from Venezuela........

^^^^This is exactly the kind of thoughts processes that burn kids out on sports or extracurricular activities in general. Sometimes even school.

Quote:

Originally Posted by crosbydog (Post 6785898)
She is somewhat driven and does want to improve and says tennis is her sport. (she does volleyball too for the camaraderie but can't make the select teams). :-(

^^^^This is what motivates kids to get better. Focusing on improvement and learning, effort and having a good attitude about what they are doing often pays off in the long run. 11 is young and playing more than 1 sport is a very good idea up through 14-16 or so.

If my kid loved an activity, continued to improve, even if it was at a slower rate than I hoped for, I would do my best to support them. I suggest finding more info about what motivates athletes and people in general from first hand experts. Check out Dr. Allen Fox, Dr. John F. Murray and Jeff Greenwald to name a few. Remember, everyone improves at different rates. I'd rather see my kid mediocre at 11 and motivated to continue to play and at 18 be closing in on their potential, still improving and have and appetite to play college tennis. So many kids who were superstars at 10, 12, 14, 15 etc. are no where to be found on the tennis scene at 17 and 18.

Good luck.

ga tennis 08-06-2012 06:20 AM

I find myself getting caught up in the now sometimes and feel some of what your feeling.The best way to do it is keep thinking big picture.As long as shes improving every day and enjoying it then keep going.My daughter lost earlier this summer to a girl she beat 6-0 6-0 last year.I was devestated!!!I let myself get caught up in the now.Try not to worry about the losses just keep trying to improve everyday.GOOD LUCK!!!!!!

MomTennis 08-06-2012 07:19 AM

As a parent it is always a goal that your child should be the best but....

the key is what is your child's goal - that is the important factor and then you as a parent should support her in reaching that goal.

crosbydog 08-06-2012 07:20 AM

Thanks for the input - I have read Mental Tennis by Allen Fox and learned a lot. I will try to look at the big picture and think long term
:-(

ga tennis 08-06-2012 08:00 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by crosbydog (Post 6786512)
Thanks for the input - I have read Mental Tennis by Allen Fox and learned a lot. I will try to look at the big picture and think long term
:-(

Read the book Mindset.It is written by Carol S Dweck.

floridatennisdude 08-06-2012 10:53 AM

She is 11 and wants to be a pro/Olympian. Good for her to dream big. An 11 y/o has no concept of how big the world is, you probably do. It's a parents job to support and encourage. It sounds like you do both now to a bit of an extreme. Realism is setting in.

Her goals will change over time. If her improvement curve stops sloping up as rapidly, she will figure it out. When she is 14ish, she'll probably meet some college players that will encourage that route. Then you support and encourage that next goal.

As far as the money, be creative in finding another 4 week project next summer. Put her in a college camp for a week or two. Try one down south and another closer to home. Who knows, she might like those better. Experiment with another pro or club near home and see if another coach inspires her more.

Lots of options, have fun with the journey!

t135 08-06-2012 04:53 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by floridatennisdude (Post 6787074)
have fun with the journey!

There it is right there

Alohajrtennis 08-06-2012 05:06 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by crosbydog (Post 6785898)
My 11 year old has been taking privates once a week for a year now from the relatively best coach in our area. We have shlepped down to Florida a couple times for her to take 4 lessons with a name coach. She qualified for her section's sweet 16 tournament in the 10's after Playing a year but now in the 12s she can only beat mediocre or younger Players.

I think Girls 12's can also be particularly frustrating. Lot's of pushers, moonballers, etc. If you are concentrating on building her game for the long run, she will lose some(or more) matches to to players with weaker fundamentals who just have more match experience, etc. Bang you head against the wall stuff. That's stuff that's hard to learn from any amount of lessons, just need lots and lots of matches, sanctioned as well as practice matches.

10ismom 08-06-2012 05:58 PM

Crosbydog......I think Aloha pointed out a good point. Success in G12s does not mean much in developmental term, especially if your daughter wants to be a pro.
I have a couple of suggestions to add. First, you should make sure your daughter understands what the pro development path involves, amount of hard work, dedication over several years, etc. Also let her know that the chance of reaching her goals as a top pro and Olympian is pretty slim.
Granted that you already had Macci evaluated her and he saw no major flaw for a pro potential, if she is willing to put in that kind of work then you should give it try.
I am sure you read and did a lot of research on US women pros. Many recent pros I've seen or read about would be home schooled, play tennis several hours/day from middle school on. Many families did bring them back and forth for good coaching, private academies or USTA center in FL and trained full-time when they were a bit older. Look up Christina McHale, Lauren Davis, Sloane Stephens, Madison Keys etc. It is good that you are cautious and gauging how and when to proceed. If she continues to progress well, you should give it a try. It looks like you are not having Serena or Sharapova but she might be one of the above names. McHale is in this Olympic, you know.

NetNinja68 08-14-2012 07:17 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by crosbydog (Post 6785898)
My 11 year old has been taking privates once a week for a year now from the relatively best coach in our area. We have shlepped down to Florida a couple times for her to take 4 lessons with a name coach. She qualified for her section's sweet 16 tournament in the 10's after Playing a year but now in the 12s she can only beat mediocre or younger Players. After spending a ton of money on 3 lessons with a name Florida coacher his week she again beat a mediocre player and a 10 year old, 4th and 5th seeds, in a Local Florida tournament until she lost in the back draw semi finals to another mediocre player from Venezuela. So my question is when do you pull the Plug and move on? She is somewhat driven and does want to improve and says tennis is her sport. (she does volleyball too for the camaraderie but can't make the select teams) Is she washed up in tennis at 11? Is she doomed to mediocrity because we live in the ******* and there are no good coaches? Except the #1 G12 is from Ohio :-(

It's really all relative. We as parents we want our children to be the best, yet just when we think they are, someone pops up around the corner who seems more talented or gifted at the same age. I have a 7 yr old daughter here in the Atl area who just started competing in the 10&U's 4 months ago and made it to the state L1 qualifier where she actually won some matches. Currently she is 38 in the state and I've found myself pressing her to execute more drop shots, volleys and slices in her recent matches only to abruptly put myself in check and celebrate her victories while minimizing her losses.

The toughest but most crucial challenge is managing your own expectations and remaining positive to your daughter. At the end of the day if your girl is not giving it real effort or focus and seems to have hit a plateau, don't be afraid to take some time away from tennis...I wish I had a silver bullet solution for you but unfortunately I don't. Whether you decide the time & $$ is not in balance with the results or not, in the end all will work out for the best if you properly manage your personal expectations...Good Luck!

tennisdad65 08-19-2012 06:17 AM

pull the plug on what? you spending money or her enjoying the game?

If she loves the game, never pull the plug. Now if the cost of private coaching or travel/tournaments is the issue, definitely pull the plug on spending. If she loves the game she will figure out how to become a great player herself. Hitting the wall, ball machine work, play with local club 'seniors' etc.. Lots of ways to become a great player without playing tournaments or private coaching.

dirkpitt38 08-19-2012 09:35 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ga tennis (Post 6786334)
I find myself getting caught up in the now sometimes and feel some of what your feeling.The best way to do it is keep thinking big picture.As long as shes improving every day and enjoying it then keep going.My daughter lost earlier this summer to a girl she beat 6-0 6-0 last year.I was devestated!!!I let myself get caught up in the now.Try not to worry about the losses just keep trying to improve everyday.GOOD LUCK!!!!!!

I don't know how many times I get caught up in now, even when my son did an underhanded serve match point down. Wanted to pull the plug then but watch his second match and he played like I know he can.

decades 08-19-2012 09:40 AM

your goal is for her to be #1. not for her to be the best player she can be. kids are really extensions of the parents, aren't they?

floridatennisdude 08-19-2012 10:24 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by tennisdad65 (Post 6817627)
pull the plug on what? you spending money or her enjoying the game?

If she loves the game, never pull the plug. Now if the cost of private coaching or travel/tournaments is the issue, definitely pull the plug on spending. If she loves the game she will figure out how to become a great player herself. Hitting the wall, ball machine work, play with local club 'seniors' etc.. Lots of ways to become a great player without playing tournaments or private coaching.

One of the better players in our area pays for almost no coaching. He will play any junior or adult any time on any day. He doesn't have parents that have the means to pay top dollar. But he is such a good kid that several adult players in the area have helped him out. One donated his 4 racquets, another gave him a used stringing machine, a club hired him to work the pro shop, another is paying half of his 2x a week clinic fees. All his mother is left with is tournament costs.

There is a lot to say for "figuring it out on your own". This kid has proved his motivation and the community has paid him back for it. I take some pride when I read his HS tennis results in the paper and see how far he has come along.

t135 08-19-2012 02:26 PM

Really great responses here. Very good advice and opinions indeed.

drgchen 08-19-2012 04:14 PM

There is a lot of room to improve when you are 11 years old. There is almost no reason to take an 11 year old to Florida for private lessons with X coach who is supposedly the best. I used to love destroying those kids who came back from a summer spent in Florida with Big name tennis camp.

In your area there are likely good coaches. If your coach isn't playing out real games and sets with your kid they probably aren't any good. Every real point is an opportunity to learn. Your kid may not be working hard enough to become number 1. I knew people who played 8 hours a day as kids to get their national rankings. I think too many parents think that skill can be bought. People can be born with talent but it takes years of hard work to get up the rankings.

drgchen 08-19-2012 04:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by floridatennisdude (Post 6818542)
One of the better players in our area pays for almost no coaching. He will play any junior or adult any time on any day. He doesn't have parents that have the means to pay top dollar. But he is such a good kid that several adult players in the area have helped him out. One donated his 4 racquets, another gave him a used stringing machine, a club hired him to work the pro shop, another is paying half of his 2x a week clinic fees. All his mother is left with is tournament costs.

I strongly agree with the above. Years ago when I played more often, I was at or above the level of the majority of the local teaching pros. I would offer to pay them their hourly rate to play a match and get declined again and again. I was always happy to work with the local juniors helping them, giving them equipment advice, strategy advice, playing out tiebreakers. I never took money from anyone and we all did what we did for the love of the game. Plus I have a day job that pays well. A ranked 11 year old may not be good enough competition to play matches with adults but there may be local top players who wouldn't mind mentoring someone just because they love tennis.


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 06:43 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.6.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
© 2006 - Tennis Warehouse