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-   -   How far can a kid go with hard work? (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=443934)

Le Tenis 10-24-2012 06:02 PM

How far can a kid go with hard work?
 
After reading the Talent Code, I pondered long and hard about some of the theories propagated by the author. Without inciting any comments about anyone's kid, I was wondering what all of you think about how far hard work can take kid in tennis ( assuming top coaching and early start) 1. Average kid, top coach, plays/trains all the time, average physical attributes (neither fast nor slow, not tall or short ) driven

2. Above average kid, top coaching, plays/trains all the time, above average height for tennis, faster than most but not the fastest, above average intelligence, driven

Could kids like these ever have a chance of going pro (money making)? Or is a decent junior ranking the best they could hope for?

Some argue that children at an early age should have DNA tests to see if they have fast twitch or slow endurance type of genes to see what sport would be most suitable ... Interesting proposition that could eliminate future
disappointments perhaps?

Postpre 10-24-2012 06:25 PM

I think hard work can take someone a long way in tennis, especially if the kid is above average physically. How physically gifted was Jim Courier, or David Ferrer, or Mardy Fish, or Juan Carlos Ferrero, or Carlos Moya.....?

In a post-match Olympic interview, Murray commented on Mo Farah's last 400 meters in the 10,000 meter final (53 seconds), and said that he himself can run 57 seconds for 400 meters flat out. This is not great speed. Now, if he trained specifically for 400 meters he would run faster, but it shows that his base speed isn't overly impressive. A lot of hard work has gone into him being a great mover on the court.

tacoben 10-25-2012 06:47 AM

IMHO, a hard worker will always trump someone with natural abilities.

Woolybugger 10-25-2012 07:47 AM

Look at Brad Gilbert.

coaching32yrs 10-25-2012 08:58 AM

You can go far in tennis without the elite level of athletic ability, what I call the top tenth of 1 percent in athletic ability. Top 25 TRN- absolutely. Starter on a top D1 school- absolutely. Top 150 pro- absolutely not. You need that top tenth of 1 percent in athletic ability to be a successful pro. No way around it. Sorry if that shatters a few dreams- but it is better to shatter them at 14 than at 24.

cmb 10-25-2012 09:47 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by tacoben (Post 6974170)
IMHO, a hard worker will always trump someone with natural abilities.


you sound like a highschool coach.


at the college level you need talent. Ballstriking ability wins big matches. Hard work is nice, but when you look at a college lineup....I guarantee that the hardest worker on the team is not in the lineup.

he is what I call a RUDY! lol

Number1Coach 10-25-2012 10:24 AM

Can I ask a question to the board and seeking honest answers ,How many on here have really worked and got in great shape and at that level have trained to the point where your so exhausted all your body could do is throw up and then repeat that type of training 6 to 8 times a year ?

Le Tenis 10-25-2012 10:44 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TCF (Post 6974337)
Gilbert's intangible was his mind. Mentally tough and able to analyze which points were important, where to parcel his maximum efforts, how to read opponent's body language and get into their heads.

Many with Gilberts limited talent, who worked just as hard, failed to do what he did. He was clearly a top player in the mental aspects of the game.

All the top players have something....mental, physical, or a mix of both, to go along with the hard work.

In your opinion, how much of the mental aspect can be taught from childhood? I read once that Boris Becker thinks all tennis players should play chess...

Number1Coach 10-25-2012 11:09 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TCF (Post 6974337)
Gilbert's intangible was his mind. Mentally tough and able to analyze which points were important, where to parcel his maximum efforts, how to read opponent's body language and get into their heads.

Many with Gilberts limited talent, who worked just as hard, failed to do what he did. He was clearly a top player in the mental aspects of the game.

All the top players have something....mental, physical, or a mix of both, to go along with the hard work.

TCF in your opinion what is a high% shot ,how and why ?

BMC9670 10-25-2012 11:22 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Number1Coach (Post 6974628)
Can I ask a question to the board and seeking honest answers ,How many on here have really worked and got in great shape and at that level have trained to the point where your so exhausted all your body could do is throw up and then repeat that type of training 6 to 8 times a year ?

I have. Track and Field at the college level - distance runs, interval training, ladder training, circuit training, weights, swimming, technique work, etc, etc. Very intense training with top national coaches. Worked to the point of exhaustion/nausea on many occasions.

I was one of the hardest working people on the team, and I was good, but not great. I had teammates who went on to compete at the world-class level. Did they work harder? Do more? Eat better? Have more discipline? No. They had something I didn't and no amount of work was going to get me to that level.

jgmellor 10-25-2012 11:36 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BMC9670 (Post 6974741)
I have. Track and Field at the college level - distance runs, interval training, ladder training, circuit training, weights, swimming, technique work, etc, etc. Very intense training with top national coaches. Worked to the point of exhaustion/nausea on many occasions.

I have too. It's fairly common even at the high school level in a hard working program.

Quote:

Originally Posted by BMC9670 (Post 6974741)
I was one of the hardest working people on the team, and I was good, but not great. I had teammates who went on to compete at the world-class level. Did they work harder? Do more? Eat better? Have more discipline? No. They had something I didn't and no amount of work was going to get me to that level.

Completely agree.

Number1Coach 10-25-2012 12:28 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BMC9670 (Post 6974741)
I have. Track and Field at the college level - distance runs, interval training, ladder training, circuit training, weights, swimming, technique work, etc, etc. Very intense training with top national coaches. Worked to the point of exhaustion/nausea on many occasions.

I was one of the hardest working people on the team, and I was good, but not great. I had teammates who went on to compete at the world-class level. Did they work harder? Do more? Eat better? Have more discipline? No. They had something I didn't and no amount of work was going to get me to that level.

Nice to hear, let me give you a follow up question , not sure what sport you were doing but this will apply " did you 'believe' during that time that you could make it to the highest level or did you have doubts ? "

Also were if any doubts were cause of your results ?

BMC9670 10-25-2012 02:14 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Number1Coach (Post 6974894)
Nice to hear, let me give you a follow up question , not sure what sport you were doing but this will apply " did you 'believe' during that time that you could make it to the highest level or did you have doubts ? "

Also were if any doubts were cause of your results ?

Honestly, yes. I believed I could one day compete in the Olympics (Oh, the confidence of youth!) I competed in the sport since I was 10 and was always at the top level. I graduated HS top 5 in the state and competed well nationally. I worked hard because I really loved it and had dreams of being the best. Now, I believed this because from age 10 to 20 I continually improved - which is extremely motivating. But, I stopped improving Junior year in college - at 22, after years of training, competition, and hard work (I worked hard in HS as well). It was devastating. Looking back now, I think I simply just hit the top of my capability. Period. I couldn't work my way to better performance any more.

To ad: I think track is a good indicator of this issue, because there aren't a lot of other attributes you can use. You can't out-think opponents. There is no trickery or gamesmanship (besides intimidation, but growing up with 5 older brothers, I was never intimidated). So, hard work can take you far, but you need more than that to be the best.

Number1Coach 10-25-2012 03:39 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BMC9670 (Post 6975081)
Honestly, yes. I believed I could one day compete in the Olympics (Oh, the confidence of youth!) I competed in the sport since I was 10 and was always at the top level. I graduated HS top 5 in the state and competed well nationally. I worked hard because I really loved it and had dreams of being the best. Now, I believed this because from age 10 to 20 I continually improved - which is extremely motivating. But, I stopped improving Junior year in college - at 22, after years of training, competition, and hard work (I worked hard in HS as well). It was devastating. Looking back now, I think I simply just hit the top of my capability. Period. I couldn't work my way to better performance any more.

To ad: I think track is a good indicator of this issue, because there aren't a lot of other attributes you can use. You can't out-think opponents. There is no trickery or gamesmanship (besides intimidation, but growing up with 5 older brothers, I was never intimidated). So, hard work can take you far, but you need more than that to be the best.

I have mentioned Ray Brown before he works with us from time to time and watching him run was the first time I had ever been up close to and Olympic level runner and what beauty it was to watch him run with DB , the guy was smooth as silk .

If you were heading towards that ,then that's impressive , I talked with Ray he told me his time out of the blocks was 3.9 which is crazy but knowing Ray was running the times he ran and still missed the cut is crazy. He has cleaned the boy up quite a bit ,still more to go trust me but that's for your words and insights .

If your ever in Ca and are physically there to train on speed we are allways open to all advice to continue to improve , No substitute for speed .

coaching32yrs 10-25-2012 05:50 PM

Track speed does not equate to tennis speed. I've read that Federer has average "track" speed for a pro tennis player, but his court speed is off the charts. It's all about anticipating, reading the way the opponent's body and racquet line up, and knowing tendencies. Some players have the super natural ability to put all this together and get a quicker start to the ball. Athleticism for tennis is not measured by your time in the 40.

Bowtiesarecool 10-25-2012 06:00 PM

It's not just about hard work. It never has been. Unless you're a natural, you need to have an excellent imagination in order for your brain to process the constantly changing relationship between you and the incoming ball, on the fly. You need experience and good memory recall in order to know just what to do with that information once the ball gets to you.

Hard work will only get you learning faster, and prevent you from becoming lazy.

Number1Coach 10-25-2012 08:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by coaching32yrs (Post 6975414)
Track speed does not equate to tennis speed. I've read that Federer has average "track" speed for a pro tennis player, but his court speed is off the charts. It's all about anticipating, reading the way the opponent's body and racquet line up, and knowing tendencies. Some players have the super natural ability to put all this together and get a quicker start to the ball. Athleticism for tennis is not measured by your time in the 40.

If you have any players on or near the same road as my player PLEASE preach that to them.

tommyfr 10-26-2012 01:57 AM

if you have an average athletic kid at 10-12 years old and start to practice hard, it is probably too late.

But if you started in some scale already as a toddler, then it is different.

My daughter is 2 years old and loves running around, jump, climb, throwing balls....our neithbour girl, same age weighs 4 kilo more (13 vs 18 kg) and is used to be carried around etc, watch tv and eat, eat ,eat.. a bit clumsy describes well her motor activity style.

Neither of the girls would probably make it if theys started serious tennis or sport practice at age 10. But if they start with such activity very early, with variety, some coaching, and many hours daily...the sky is the limit....if both got the same exposure from today, probably my daughter would come out as the more successful anyway, but that might not be "talent", just that we fed her differently and encouraged activity differently from birth to 2 years of age...so it would not be genetic...

But if my daughter practice 1 hr a day, and neighbour girl 4 hours a day, say from 3 years of age to 10 years of age, I would guess she would be the one with better skills

the same with fast/slow twitched muscles, that can also change with lot of training (research fact)

BMC9670 10-26-2012 12:05 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Number1Coach (Post 6975238)
I have mentioned Ray Brown before he works with us from time to time and watching him run was the first time I had ever been up close to and Olympic level runner and what beauty it was to watch him run with DB , the guy was smooth as silk .

If you were heading towards that ,then that's impressive , I talked with Ray he told me his time out of the blocks was 3.9 which is crazy but knowing Ray was running the times he ran and still missed the cut is crazy. He has cleaned the boy up quite a bit ,still more to go trust me but that's for your words and insights .

If your ever in Ca and are physically there to train on speed we are allways open to all advice to continue to improve , No substitute for speed .

While I was good, realistically I was not headed that way. I thought I was, but there is a marked difference in decent college level and world-class level. I got to train with world-class athletes as they are prevalent in college track, so I experienced this close up.

Another analogy to tennis: As a hurdler I was a technician. I worked hard to perfect my technique, which compensated quite a lot for non-world-class speed and size. I could beat many better athletes because of this. BUT, at the top level, EVERY athlete had perfect technique AND world-class size and speed. Some things you can improve, but only to a point. In tennis, I believe you can win a lot of ways and make up for weaknesses, but the top players have it all.

gplracer 12-02-2012 06:36 AM

Some of it is personality too. Some kids have the personality that they love doing the same thing over and over. They will hit against the wall for hours and think nothing of it. I think that helps with coordination but it has to come from within.


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