Originally Posted by RF20Lennon
The main issue is work ethic and age at when they start playing. If you look at the top European guys they start playing when their 3 or 4. Americans on average start at around 8-10. The second thing is work ethic. The time spent practicing on the court and the pre-gym work out. For people who want to become pros they spend about 8 hours everyday for practice,stretches and workouts!! Americans usually don't even spend half the time! The reason Pete Sampras was so succesful was because he was originally Greek and he had the European work ethic in him. McCenroe and Connors worked EXTREMELY hard. mcCenroe said once in an interview as a junior sometimes he used to spend 6 to 7 hours on the court!! So when this improves America will get their new champion
Sorry but this post is so wrong about so many things. Just full of wrong information.
1. The Euros start later, many play soccer up until age 10-14, and practice less. A survey of top 100 players showed most spent less than 15 hours a week on tennis up to age 14.
2. There is zero advantage to starting a kid in tennis at age 3-4 vs 8-9. More likely will instead result in worse players, burned out players, injured players.
3. Sampras is an example of stars aligning. Found tennis racquet while a bored little kid on a rainy day and started hitting on his own, sister says he would excel at any sport they tried with him from age 5 so was a freak athlete from birth, met a great coach as a young kid, loved tennis from day 1 and was self motivated.
4. Johnny Mac was also playing other sports through his young years. Went to college. Was a freak in regards to hand eye coordination.
5. Johnny Mac has been yelling that tennis kids need MORE balance, other sports, and LESS court time. Thats why he opened his academy!
"The Academy has been built around McEnroe’s belief that a well-balanced life, one where kids participate in all sports, go to school, and then take up tennis, is what may work best."
Or we can go to John's own website for his academy and read his mission statement:
"John's passion and belief is that great players can be developed in urban settings, while still having the opportunity to live at home, pursue their educational goals, and participate in a variety of sports and extracurricular activities."
Sure all pros work very hard starting at age 15 up. But the idea that these guys lived for tennis from age 4 is total nonsense.