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ga tennis 01-10-2013 10:14 AM

Not Enough Hours In The Day!!
 
I am getting frustrated!!! My daughter goes to public school and doesnt get home till after 4;00. When she gets home she is usually tired from a long day at school. All of her tennis friends are homeschooled. She usually practices around an hour and a half a day and tournaments on the weekend. Im just concerned that with her going to regular school she is not getting enough time on the court. I wanna put her with her academy full time but cant afford it. So my question to you guys is do you think an hour and a half is enough for a girl that just turned 11????

barringer97 01-10-2013 10:20 AM

according to all of those studies, yes.

But then you read stories like this:

http://norcaltennisczar.blogspot.com...t-kidding.html

Quote:

Azarenka's dedication paid off with her first Grand Slam singles title in the recent Australian Open and the No. 1 ranking. She is 17-0 with three titles this year entering the BNP Paribas Open, Wednesday through March 18 in Indian Wells.
"She would say, 'I can't go home. I feel terrible. I can't volley. I need to work on my volley," Sacramento State men's coach Slava Konikov, a 50-year-old Minsk native who taught Azarenka from age 8 to 14, said with a heavy accent. "I coach 34 years, and I never see anything like it. Most say, 'I don't have time today.' That's why she's No. 1 now. She told me all the time, 'Coach, let's go.' "
Azarenka's parents, Alla and Fedor, named their daughter Victoria because it's Latin for victory. Alla, who managed a tennis center, introduced Victoria to the sport at 7 and asked Konikov, an acquaintance, to work with her.
"She always told me, 'I want to be No. 1,' " said Konikov, who also coached countrymen Max Mirnyi, a former world No. 1 in doubles, and Vladimir Voltchkov, the first qualifier to reach the Wimbledon semifinals (2000) since John McEnroe in 1977. "She give me big energy every practice. ...
"I tell the (Sac State) guys, 'You need to believe you can be better.' 'Oh, no, Slava, it's tough.' Victoria Azarenka, every practice was like last practice (of her career). It's easy for coach. ...
"I'm like, 'Come on, you're a kid.' 'I want to be No. 1 -- what I have to do?' 'You have to work five or six hours a day.' "
No problem. Azarenka, who grew to be 6-foot, practiced five days a week and played matches or tournaments on weekends.
"She was never sick," Konikov said. "She never missed practice. Same with Mirnyi and Voltchkov. This is very important. She played very fast and hit hard. She told me, 'I want to play like a man, not a girl.' "
And these were not normal lessons and practice matches.
"Any ball, if it go out, she play it," Konikov recalled. "She never see lines. She play fence to fence."
Azarenka did not want a level playing field. She wanted to play with handicaps. Anything she could do to make life on the court tougher on herself, she would. Playing against boys and men. Giving herself only one serve. Giving her opponent the doubles alleys. Starting games at 0-15 or 0-30.
Azarenka's biggest handicap, though, was built-in. Impatience. If anything, she had too much desire. Konikov recalled the first time he saw Azarenka play.
"She was very nervous and throwing her racket," he said. "Her problem from the beginning was that after one practice, she wanted to feel she learned something. 'I need to learn the forehand today.' 'No, maybe (it takes) two months or two years.'
"I told her, 'If you be more patient, you'll be a great tennis player. Tennis is not easy. It's a tough sport.' At 10 or 11, she started to understand."
Still, Azarenka was never satisfied and needed constant encouragement.
"She was crying every single practice if something was wrong," Konikov continued. "We talked a lot: 'You're great, better than yesterday. You beat this girl.' 'No, she's terrible.' She beat her 6-0, 6-0 but was not excited. Every time, 'No, I want to be better.' "
In contrast, Konikov mentioned students at the Spare Time Junior Tennis Academy, where he also teaches in Sacramento.
"(I say,) 'You're missing so many balls. How do you feel?' 'I feel great.' 'Maybe you need to start crying. Why you're not No. 1?' " Konikov said.
With her talent, size and desire, Azarenka clearly was headed in that direction.
"She wasn't my first student," Konikov noted. "I had Mirnyi and Voltchkov. Max said he wanted to play with her (when she was) 11 or 12. Max was (23 or 24). He said (afterward) she can be No.1."

WARPWOODIE 01-10-2013 10:38 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ga tennis (Post 7109945)
I wanna put her with her academy full time but cant afford it. So my question to you guys is do you think an hour and a half is enough for a girl that just turned 11????

I've read many of your past post and you struck me as someone with a lot of money:oops::)

But as to your question, 1.5 hours of practice, 3-4 days per week should suffice. Quality practice time over quantity. Mix it up with drills (fed balls, work on mechanics, practice serves), practice matches with older/level based players, one on one coaching with personal coach. Don't worry too much what the other kids are doing or what their results/rankings are. The pressure is on them (the homeschoolers) later in their journey when return on investment doesn't add up. Be patient, it's a long journey, and your kid could be a late bloomer.

TCF 01-10-2013 10:52 AM

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ga tennis 01-10-2013 10:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TCF (Post 7110019)
We practice about like what warpwoodie suggests. I am fine with it.

But we met these 2 eastern euro girls and they are on court 5 hours a day...EVERY day! The dad says they watch tennis channel constantly. They eat and sleep tennis.

The last 2 weeks we have trained with them and my girl spent 3-4 hours each time. She has improved at a scary rate in just 2 weeks. I said no yesterday, and might again today for a break.

These obsessed girls could burn out soon, we shall see. But yeah.....there are girls around the world spending many more hours than we are on court.

I know ALOT of girls like this. I just feel like we need more but its so hard when she has been at school from 7:30 to 3:30 :( Her little mind is exhausted!!!!

TCF 01-10-2013 11:02 AM

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MarTennis 01-10-2013 12:16 PM

Two words...
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by ga tennis (Post 7109945)
I am getting frustrated!!! My daughter goes to public school and doesnt get home till after 4;00. When she gets home she is usually tired from a long day at school. All of her tennis friends are homeschooled. She usually practices around an hour and a half a day and tournaments on the weekend. Im just concerned that with her going to regular school she is not getting enough time on the court. I wanna put her with her academy full time but cant afford it. So my question to you guys is do you think an hour and a half is enough for a girl that just turned 11????

Hell yes! 8 hours M-F and tourneys on weekends is more than enough, if at least an hour of each 1.5 is intense and well programmed.

I have been pondering the practice quality and schedule issues for my 10 year old. He has academy from 10 hours per week M-Th, they are diligent about warm up and warm down (25 minutes total), and well programmed in terms of keeping players moving for the remaining time. Once I was confident on that front, I thought about where the gaps remained. Nutrition and sleep, not lack of court time or practice was my conclusion. I gotta get expert on home cooked meals and enforcing bedtime and naps.

GA - perfect the off court stuff that contributes to health and performance. This will allow your charge to be intense with the limited time she has. You can make a decision on academy a little later after you assess all the alternative remedies.

Fulltime academy may lull you into thinking everything is being handled.

p.s. My charge is in public school. Between 2:40 and 4pm is home work, snack, decompression/(nap he won't take) and drop off to Ferriera/Bareis which runs from 4-6:30pm. He is dog tired at conclusion.

Soianka 01-10-2013 12:30 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ga tennis (Post 7109945)
I am getting frustrated!!! My daughter goes to public school and doesnt get home till after 4;00. When she gets home she is usually tired from a long day at school. All of her tennis friends are homeschooled. She usually practices around an hour and a half a day and tournaments on the weekend. Im just concerned that with her going to regular school she is not getting enough time on the court. I wanna put her with her academy full time but cant afford it. So my question to you guys is do you think an hour and a half is enough for a girl that just turned 11????

Could you work out some sort of barter with her coach/academy with you donating some coaching hours to the academy for reduced tuition for her?

Ash_Smith 01-10-2013 01:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ga tennis (Post 7109945)
So my question to you guys is do you think an hour and a half is enough for a girl that just turned 11????

Without wishing to sound glib...enough for what?

LeeD 01-10-2013 01:34 PM

Why and for what?
For playing junior tournaments, it's adaquate.
For winning state tournaments, it's not close.
Some sacrifice is needed. Why spend 6 hours at home? Dinner takes one hour, homework maybe 2...maybe more if they're not smart.
That still leaves plenty of time for more tennis and sleep by 10.

LeeD 01-10-2013 01:36 PM

Tired from a day at school?
Something is wrong with her. Or she's exxagerating to get out of homework or practice.
Every athelete I know went to school from 8-3, went to practice from 3:30 to 6, and some like me went to work from 8-11PM, napping during transport times.
Swimmers practice morning and afternoons, and most have jobs.

WARPWOODIE 01-10-2013 01:49 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LeeD (Post 7110454)
Tired from a day at school?
Something is wrong with her. Or she's exxagerating to get out of homework or practice.
Every athelete I know went to school from 8-3, went to practice from 3:30 to 6, and some like me went to work from 8-11PM, napping during transport times.
Swimmers practice morning and afternoons, and most have jobs.

Good point...these are indicators that the kid may not be into tennis as much as the parent.

TCF 01-10-2013 01:50 PM

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TCF 01-10-2013 01:53 PM

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LeeD 01-10-2013 01:57 PM

I've heard that, funny.
Had girlfriends with kids that age, and currenlty g/f's nephews that age.
Don't you believe it. There playing with their computers and texting when you think they're doing homework.
Yes, homework takes a real 2 hours. Maybe 3 if they're slow.
Texting and playing video games takes more than 3 hours a day.

hhollines 01-10-2013 01:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ga tennis (Post 7109945)
I am getting frustrated!!! My daughter goes to public school and doesnt get home till after 4;00. When she gets home she is usually tired from a long day at school. All of her tennis friends are homeschooled. She usually practices around an hour and a half a day and tournaments on the weekend. Im just concerned that with her going to regular school she is not getting enough time on the court. I wanna put her with her academy full time but cant afford it. So my question to you guys is do you think an hour and a half is enough for a girl that just turned 11????

GA, I'm in the same boat (but my daughter is 12). There is no clear cut answer (I've accepted this). We spend about the same time per day on average (1.5 hrs.; 5-6x per week) as you do and we make it very structured and focused (quality over quantity). Many times we have no choice b/c we live in a snow state so getting indoor courts is very difficult b/c the clubs reserve the courts for adult play (that's how they make $) . . . talk about frustrating :)

I've come to realize that because there is no playbook, no one has all the answers, and no one knows the exact ingredients of the elite athlete (we know elements, but not everything and not to mention luck and a sprinkle from God), we developed a customized program specifically for my daughter based on what keeps her leaving the court with a smile. For example, we don't play excessive number of tournaments b/c she doesn't like it and she said, I need time in-between to work on my game. We don't put her on the courts for 3-4 hrs. per day b/c that turns tennis into a chore for her and it impacts her school (she is straight A's/Dean's List and she is very proud of that). We always choose school before tennis . . . finals tomorrow, no tennis today :)

We don't chase points but play enough so she can qualify for good level tournaments. After that, let the chips fall where they may. The academy route is a non-starter for us and, fact is, they haven't produced much lately either. There's so much crap out there . . .

TCF 01-10-2013 02:06 PM

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sureshs 01-10-2013 02:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LeeD (Post 7110454)
Tired from a day at school?
Something is wrong with her. Or she's exxagerating to get out of homework or practice.
Every athelete I know went to school from 8-3, went to practice from 3:30 to 6, and some like me went to work from 8-11PM, napping during transport times.
Swimmers practice morning and afternoons, and most have jobs.

Did you read the OP? She gets home at 4. It can happen based on whether she uses school bus, public transportation, or gets picked up by a parent at a certain time.

This was the main reason we moved into a condo 2 blocks from school when my son entered high school. It is a 5 minute walk.

I know kids who come to the club at 3:30 after finishing school at 3. It requires good traffic and small distances, and eating something in the car.

School is different from when you were a kid. Classes are exhausting as the demands are more. Competition is much higher since your days.

hhollines 01-10-2013 02:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TCF (Post 7110559)
This is what amazes me about these eastern euro girls....they are begging to stay on court 5 hours a day. The 9.5 year old told me "I would play tennis every hour of every day if they let me". She knows every player, reads about them, loves Tennis Channel.

Yes, it's interesting but no clear cut answer either way. 5-6 hrs. a day doesn't guarantee success and 2 hrs. per day doesn't guarantee failure.

I don't get frustrated that much anymore because there's so many unknowns and this is just a game of "trial and error." If a family goes "all in," I hope to god it works but honestly (and the math bears out), 99%+ of those juniors will be looking for jobs and in this competitive global economy, so I hope they have many advanced degrees in addition to living on the court . . . however, as we know, many do not, and we never hear from them again.

This is perhaps the most morbid of all sports (or close to the top). My goal is to not have tennis ruin my little girls life. It's a very delicate balancing act. I wish success to everyone as we all go through this crazy junior tennis world.

TCF 01-10-2013 02:37 PM

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