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Old 12-29-2012, 09:15 PM   #109
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Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 1,890

Originally Posted by Wegner View Post
Well, JW, I preached, in 1968, open stance, topspin, stalking the ball, finishing across the opposite shoulder. In 1971 I started putting a string 3 ft. over the net to promote topspin, I used this in Spain in 1973. In Brazil in the 1980s I experimented by putting the string 5 ft over the net, and I emphasized waiting for the ball to emphasize the Zone, always testing, seeing what gave out the best results. In 1989 I published my first book, "Tennis in 2 Hours" (a name that the Germans called me when I coached there in the 80s). I gave a copy of the book at the 1989 Sunshine Cup to the Russian coach, for the Russian Tennis Federation. Bud Collins confirmed the next year, on his first trip to Moscow that coaches there loved it and asked him for more copies. I learned from a Belgrade coach that is now in Australia that my 1989 book was in Belgrade in 1991 and well received by coaches.

Then came the 1990s, and for four years I participated with instruction in more than 100 New Tennis Magazine shows, and we sold DVDs with that instruction through the TV show. From 1994 to 2000 I worked for ESPN International as an ATP, Australian Open and French Open commentator. I started emphasizing hitting on the lower part of the strings for topspin. I then commented for another channel PSN, in 1992 for the whole year, doing Wimbledon.

I retired from broadcasting in December 2000 and dedicated my time to promote my modern tennis videos (the term came up in 1991 as a friend of mine started doing surveys for me in Boca Raton and I started using it, and Brad Holbrook said in a New Tennis Magazine TV show that I was "the father of modern tennis"). In the 2000s I started emphasizing more and more pulling across instead of just swinging across and I added two more videos in 2006 and 2007. Then I started to visit Europe again (where I had played so much in the 1960s), meeting with old friends that were now coaches (Tony Roche in Rome, Angel Gimenez and Pato Alvarez in Barcelona, and in England meeting with David Lloyd and laying out teaching his main Next Generation clubs top coaches the system, plus seminars in Belgium, Holland and Finland, with great reception).

Next, in 2008, 2009 and 2010 producing 4 more DVDs, the series Tennis Into the Future, I just authored a new DVD, The Best of Oscar, a compilation, stroke by stroke of my most salient video segments, and I am on the process of writing a new book. I know my methodology is quite controversial and revolutionary, but it is a real good service to kids and public at large.

This is a long answer to your question, but also need to say that Segura played open stance two-handed forehands which was a bullet, and I did not teach like he taught, neither like Gonzalez, I taught like Segura and Gonzales played, not how they taught, although Gonzales forehand was a bit continental and not his forte. But Gonzalez serve, his slice approach, his volleys were a beauty to behold. I also studied/copied, some of the best strokes of all time, including the modern players. You must have witnessed, being a pro player and now a coach, some of the incredible shotmaking of many champions and I am lucky to have witnessed the evolutions that the game took and proud to be a part of that.

Finally, to answer your question specifically, American coaches stress to play forehands semi-open, which is a bit less efficient than the open stance for pulling across, and, perhaps for that reason, they are not geting that much action on the ball. They are also not tracking the ball long enough. Other than that, the USA has some fantastic prospects. I would say, encourage them to yank the ball up and across. When you get the feel, the harder you hit, the more the ball goes in.

I wish you a very Happy New Year and the best in your endeavors as a coach and in life. I am 73 years old, semi-retired, enjoying life myself, and loving every day. Occasionally I have posted in Talk Tennis, and thought starting my own thread to post tips would be a fun thing to do. I have the time, and a ton of materials to post.

Best, Oscar
You still didn't answer my questions, but then I really didn't expect you would. But in a way that in itself does answer them.

I'm well aware how lucky I've been to have interacted with some of the game's greats like Gonzalez and Segura, to have played (sometimes succeeding and sometimes failing) in pressure situations, to have seen some amazing, almost superhuman, shot making as a spectator, coach and player (unfortunately sometimes too often against me), to have been able to travel, to have been able to meet many high-profile celebrities, and now to be able to help people play and love this game as I do. It's just that my experience differs from yours--in some cases by miles. It's because of my passion for the game that I have such strong feelings.

I thank you for the kind wishes, and I wish you the same--after all we are both very lucky to be doing something we love. We just do so in very different ways--and I'm not talking just about technique. You'll note that I have never once linked my website, Youtube, or testimonials to anything I've ever posted here. The only names I've dropped are some of those who've coached me, and for whom I will be forever grateful. I haven't named any of the tour players I've worked with either in the past or currently--and I take no credit for someone who may or may not have read something I've published. Happy New Year.

Last edited by JW10S; 12-29-2012 at 10:08 PM.
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