Am I off base here?

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by mrw, Oct 21, 2007.

  1. mrw

    mrw Semi-Pro

    May 31, 2005
    As I related in another thread, I am attempting to add a bit of diversity to my back hand. I am a lefty. At any time that I have sought professional council regarding my game, I have always sought out another lefty.

    I recently stopped at a local tennis facility to see if I could scare up someone to fill that bill.

    I walked up to the desk and asked the lady behind the counter about lessons. I said I was looking for a left handed pro. She says, "all our pros can teach both right handed and left handed students. It doesn't matter."

    I respond by saying that she may feel that way and to an extent that is true but I prefer left handed teaching pros.

    With a smirk she says " I have no idea who here is left handed" (the smirk doing the job of ahole which was left unspoken.)

    I said "well I can see that this is not the place for me" and I left.

    I still think I am correct. Left handers see the game differently than right handers and further, it's my $$$. If I wanted to learn Russian, I would seek someone fluent in the tongue not someone who first thinks in English then speaks the word in Russian.

    What say you, is smirk lady right??
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2007
  2. WBF

    WBF Hall of Fame

    Jul 18, 2007
    Somewhere in NY
    Depends what you need help with. A lefty could probably be most helpful in terms of tactics, knowing what spins and so forth is most effective against a righty.

    Of course, you can then point out that righties might know the same thing, as they are the ones experiencing the differences a lefty game gives them, and might be able to better describe the problems they have.

    If you're talking stroke mechanics or your standard coaching, I can't imagine it mattering for anyone worth their salt.

    That being said, the lady sounds a bit condescending.
  3. TheShaun

    TheShaun Hall of Fame

    Jun 9, 2007
    i don't think you're off base and you raise a good point. a lefty can teach the "game craft" of a lefty to another lefty better than a righty could. as far as stroke mechanics go, i don't think it would matter so much. i totally think you're in the right to search out a lefty coach. hope you find one!

    btw, as i was reading your post it got me thinking to my regular instructor, who's a lefty. but rarely does he do any instructing as a lefty, he plays well enough as a righty. all of his demo shots are done with the right hand. once we had a lefty in our class and he would show that person how to hit with his left hand. he became a decent righty by playing and teaching his daughters who are both righty.
  4. herosol

    herosol Professional

    May 29, 2007
    hmm i dont think you're wrong
    obviously lefties have many differences in play style then rightys
  5. Bagumbawalla

    Bagumbawalla Hall of Fame

    Jun 24, 2006
    Whatever the normal ratio of right-handers to left-handers in the everyday world, I imagine it is much greater in tennis (and many other sports like boxing) where it is habitually discouraged. It is only lately that players are discovering their natural left-handedness can be an advantage.

    So, a left-handed tennis instructor is, then, especially rare.

    I agree, completely, that when you buy a product or a service, you should get what you want-- if for no other reason than-- that is what you want.

    Having said that, suppose the woman responded that Federer happened to be visiting that day and was giving free lessons and had one hour still available, but of course (she points out), he is not left-handed. Would you have accepted his instruction?

    If your answer is yes, then clearly, there are other factors involved than left-handedness. Only you will know what they are.

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