Can you coach during early junior tournaments?

BMC9670

Hall of Fame
Noobie questions here. My son turns 8 this spring and has been playing for 2 years. He wants to try playing in some tournaments this summer. Is coaching allowed at the lower age brackets like B8 and B10, or is it not allowed at any age?
 

PatrickB

Rookie
Some tournaments and leagues may allow it specifically (e.g. NM high school rules allow coaching through the fence by the designated coach), but if it's played under straight USTA rules, coaching is generally not allowed at any level of juniors except on authorized rest breaks.
 

jgravagna

New User
First of all I would not recommend your young player play matches until 10.Furthermore, no coaching is not allowed in matches.
 

BMC9670

Hall of Fame
First of all I would not recommend your young player play matches until 10.Furthermore, no coaching is not allowed in matches.
My strategy has been not talking to him about playing competitive matches yet, but now he is asking to. Even though he is 8, he is physically on par with 10 YO and is getting quite good. His group lessons are with kids 10-12 and they play a lot of point-scenario drills, so I think he's getting the competitive bug.

Why would you not recommend him playing matches until 10? I understand starting them too early as far as physical and mental burn-out, and I make sure he's not playing more than 3 times per week 1 to 1.5 hours at a time, but now he's asking to play matches.
 

tennismom42

Semi-Pro
My strategy has been not talking to him about playing competitive matches yet, but now he is asking to. Even though he is 8, he is physically on par with 10 YO and is getting quite good. His group lessons are with kids 10-12 and they play a lot of point-scenario drills, so I think he's getting the competitive bug.

Why would you not recommend him playing matches until 10? I understand starting them too early as far as physical and mental burn-out, and I make sure he's not playing more than 3 times per week 1 to 1.5 hours at a time, but now he's asking to play matches.
Use the NOTEBOOK method instead. Get him a couple of different notebooks. Have him write in it before/after practices and before/after matches. He can put strategies, "don't forgets," what to do if... in the notebook.

He can reference the notebook during the match

8 is fine for tournaments.
 

BMC9670

Hall of Fame
That's a great idea. I saw some pros doing this at the US Open last year.

Do young kids get any help in tournament matches in terms of keeping score, changing ends, and other "logistical" things? He knows these things academically, but I would assume it's going to be a lot to think about the first few times out.
 

PatrickB

Rookie
That's a great idea. I saw some pros doing this at the US Open last year.

Do young kids get any help in tournament matches in terms of keeping score, changing ends, and other "logistical" things? He knows these things academically, but I would assume it's going to be a lot to think about the first few times out.
Not formally, though frequently if your juniors are having trouble with this, an official might ask an unaffilitated adult to come on court to help them keep this kind of thing straight.
 

jmdlaw

Banned
I seen beginner level tournaments where the parents will jump in and correct scores and correct the server on which side, - not that is legal but it happens
 

eeytennis

Semi-Pro
Well, if the tournament goes strictly by USTA rules, then no. If there are score disputes (which there often are in the younger age brackets) then go get the tournament director or an official if they have one.

Let me just say though, why would you want to coach your son anyway? Let him play and have fun at this age. Also, let him learn to compete without being so dependent on you. You know those kids that always look at their parents after every single darn point...do you want your son to be like one of those kids?
 

trojankid

Banned
You should just let your child figure it out on his own just like you do with his Math, Reading and English . Once he get through the 18's and hopefully he makes it to college the coaches then will apply what you should have done as a parent and start teaching them what is going on during their matches.

And once again we repeat the circle of tennis and the thought "let them figure it out on their own"!

Coaching should start early as possible.
 

ga tennis

Hall of Fame
You should just let your child figure it out on his own just like you do with his Math, Reading and English . Once he get through the 18's and hopefully he makes it to college the coaches then will apply what you should have done as a parent and start teaching them what is going on during their matches.

And once again we repeat the circle of tennis and the thought "let them figure it out on their own"!

Coaching should start early as possible.
It is the hardest thing as a parent to just sit back relax stay positive and let your child play.My 8 year old daughters coach told me the best thing i can do as a parent is to let her figure it out. I only tell her to come on or good shot no coaching.I have an 2 or 3 times over ruled her calls if she makes a bad call because i would rather embarras her now than to have her think cheating is acceptable. I dont want her to get the reputation of a cheater and not have friends because one of the reasons we play tournaments is to meet friends who are on the same journey she is on.
 
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CitationJet

Rookie
ga tennis,

I think trojankid's, er Brad's, response was an attempt at being facetious, at least if I'm reading his comments correctly. He is advocating parental coaching involvement at every step of tournament play, which in later years MIGHT (Disclaimer here before flaming begins: I am not a coach, I am not an expert in the psychological aspects of the game, I'm just a parent expressing my opinion as to what I think MIGHT happen.) lead to mental weakness in the player in their later years.

My 7.5 year old's coach has also told us to move back and let him work it out on his own when playing competitively (and he has been playing B10U tournaments about once a month beginning this year), but provide support on the sidelines, and to also use the notebook method. We also do not interfere with his lessons with his coach; unlike some other parents who find it hard to let go control and interfere at every opportunity, we find it reasonable to let him go one on one with the coach while we listen and then back that coaching up within the family. So far it has worked out very well!

Good luck ga tennis, and relax a bit. :)

You are exactly right! It is the hardest thing as a parent to just sit back relax stay positive and let your child play.My 8 year old daughters coach told me the best thing i can do as a parent is to let her figure it out. I only tell her to come on or good shot no coaching.I have an 2 or 3 times over ruled her calls if she makes a bad call because i would rather embarras her now than to have her think cheating is acceptable. I dont want her to get the reputation of a cheater and not have friends because one of the reasons we play tournaments is to meet friends who are on the same journey she is on.
 

ga tennis

Hall of Fame
ga tennis,

I think trojankid's, er Brad's, response was an attempt at being facetious, at least if I'm reading his comments correctly. He is advocating parental coaching involvement at every step of tournament play, which in later years MIGHT (Disclaimer here before flaming begins: I am not a coach, I am not an expert in the psychological aspects of the game, I'm just a parent expressing my opinion as to what I think MIGHT happen.) lead to mental weakness in the player in their later years.

My 7.5 year old's coach has also told us to move back and let him work it out on his own when playing competitively (and he has been playing B10U tournaments about once a month beginning this year), but provide support on the sidelines, and to also use the notebook method. We also do not interfere with his lessons with his coach; unlike some other parents who find it hard to let go control and interfere at every opportunity, we find it reasonable to let him go one on one with the coach while we listen and then back that coaching up within the family. So far it has worked out very well!

Good luck ga tennis, and relax a bit. :)
Thanks!! I do need to relax..Its hard!!
 

BMC9670

Hall of Fame
Let me just say though, why would you want to coach your son anyway? Let him play and have fun at this age. Also, let him learn to compete without being so dependent on you. You know those kids that always look at their parents after every single darn point...do you want your son to be like one of those kids?
You should just let your child figure it out on his own just like you do with his Math, Reading and English . Once he get through the 18's and hopefully he makes it to college the coaches then will apply what you should have done as a parent and start teaching them what is going on during their matches.

And once again we repeat the circle of tennis and the thought "let them figure it out on their own"!

Coaching should start early as possible.
You are exactly right! It is the hardest thing as a parent to just sit back relax stay positive and let your child play.
This is not what I meant to ask. I shouldn't have used the term "coaching". I was simply wondering if there is help with the "logistics" to help navigate a first tournament match. That's all. I'm not wanting to instruct him on strokes, strategy, and "coach" him on court and I agree with your posts above. But if a match gets off track, do they get help o do we step in and help? That was my question and I think this has been answered here.
 

ga tennis

Hall of Fame
My daughter when she was 7 i would always notify the umpire that she has trouble with keeping score and they would always help out.
 
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