Originally Posted by chalkflewup
There's nothing wrong with taking a break at all. My kid takes 2 days off a week but that's more physical than mental. Ask any serious junior tennis player if they want to take a mental break over the Winter months. There's your evidence. The majority like to compete.
Now the parents might need a break but I don't think the serious junior will unless the parents force the child to play. I do think many parents need a mental break and in some instances professional guidance.
I don't know too many kids that enjoy final exams. Given the choice, my kid would prefer to take a mental break from school but tennis and competitions are enjoyable and a release.
What do you mean by serious junior tennis player? Are we talking about the nations best or the more mid-level national players? Yes, we still like to compete but if you take a couple months off you are more likely to be injury-free and mentally rested. You feel rested and eager to compete (which you always should).
Their is definitely no forcing of the child to play considering they pick their tournament schedule. If the parent needs a mental break that isn't good. They are not the ones competing, they are the ones who should be having fun just watching their children play (as long as they have good sportsmanship).
Those are finals, totally different things. I agree with you, tennis should be 100% fun and enjoyable. And that is what we are trying to preserve.
Every family is different and I'm just sharing our experience. Every season that we have taken a couple month break we have done better then when we didn't take a break in both their mental and physical performance. They were not taking a break because of pressure put on by the parent, but because they need a little break from the heavy competition that tennis brings. They are not future pros and we are not trying to groom them to be. We are trying to keep tennis as fun as possible.