Most Tennis Lessons Are Useless (video)

tennis_balla

Hall of Fame
Here’s a video a friend of mine sent me today.


As a coach myself who’s been coaching over 17 years, played competitively etc, I have to completely agree with this topic, especially coach beside different coaches on two continents, several different countries, it’s all the same.

Like it was stated in the video, there are lot of good coaches out there, however the majority are bad and just looking for a paycheck and it’s the same type of lesson, same drills week in and week out. I’ve seen coaches do the same drills with 4 different players, 4 different lessons that day. It’s like it was the theme of the day for everyone. Almost as if they saw a new drill on YouTube and implemented it that day, all day.

Another topic I’d love to see covered by those guys is coaches claiming they have the same energy and willingness to coach all 9 or 10 straight hours they’re on court that day. Not happening.
 

jdawgg

Rookie
Paraphrasing here:

Mark: "There's a student that just wants a workout and a glorified ball machine at 100/hr..."

Ian: "Here's the problem, most students want that but they aren't honest enough with their coach or themselves to know that"

Ian: "When push comes to shove, if you ask them if they want to change their grip and get worse for a month before they get better, the vast majority of tennis students do not want that path."

Mark: "Is it the idea of instant gratification?"

Ian: "At the end of the day most humans don't want to change their habits."

I've been the coach who didn't get as many lessons because I was trying to change peoples habits and help them get better. But the next guy just does the same boilerplate lesson and says "good" on every shot and "more brush" and gets more lessons that way. So who was the naive one here? I was, and so is Mark Sansait. As the other pro said, it's all about providing value to the student. If they believe the lesson was worth the $100 value then that's what counts. You can't gatekeep what other peoples values should be.
 
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Miki 1234

Semi-Pro
Here’s a video a friend of mine sent me today.


As a coach myself who’s been coaching over 17 years, played competitively etc, I have to completely agree with this topic, especially coach beside different coaches on two continents, several different countries, it’s all the same.

Like it was stated in the video, there are lot of good coaches out there, however the majority are bad and just looking for a paycheck and it’s the same type of lesson, same drills week in and week out. I’ve seen coaches do the same drills with 4 different players, 4 different lessons that day. It’s like it was the theme of the day for everyone. Almost as if they saw a new drill on YouTube and implemented it that day, all day.

Another topic I’d love to see covered by those guys is coaches claiming they have the same energy and willingness to coach all 9 or 10 straight hours they’re on court that day. Not happening.
Its pandoras box right there.
Tennis is a pyramid scam.
And in such worst coaches will trive first.
Its almost impossible to see short term progress and there is nothing tennis offers in long term except few lousy price money tournamets were you end up playing for free.
To make a living as 100% honest coach is next to impossible.
So most dont even try to get to 10%
And very few will be able to tell since as i said it takes years to make real progress with a player and even if that happens years have passed and its the end of the road.
Pro tennis players are born that way. Great coaching cant make that happen , maybe just speed it up a bit.
So you are left with decent to good players countless hard hours as a coach for almost no real results right away and long term still nothing special and the end is there already when player reaches college years.
So from 14 to 18 work like a mf so kid can go to college and you barely make a living while risking all along that kid wakes up on the wrong side of bed and quits or fires you. So better to coach granny or tennis school. Or deluded tennis fans if you can take the talk.
Same or better money less work just more sleaze.
Or be an extra sleaze and destroy kids with somewhat potential with stories of grandeur so they believe you anything you say and work less hehe.
 
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curly_2350

New User
Coaches make a living by providing a fun, social experience that gets you moving a bit. Usually in groups and usually to kids. (Non beginner) adults getting lessons to get better would be less than 1% of the average coaches income and workload I’d imagine. Adults think they want to get better but they don’t wanna practice 10 hours a week, they don’t want to show up when it’s cold or drizzling, they won’t reschedule other things to make time. They just like the idea of getting better for a few months but in reality have more important adult things to do.

Exact same thing with teaching instruments or language. You make money off adults in these fields by selling big courses as a one off for the one week they are interested. They are not going to be showing up for lessons week after week for years.The regular solid business is selling lessons to parents of kids who will make them go year round.
 
D

Deleted member 780836

Guest
Did anyone here buy any courses from Ian? I watched him coach students on his channel and it does not inspire confidence. He is good at the clickbait and matchplay videos, but I wouldn't take him seriously for instructional videos based on his youtube content.
 

Chas Tennis

G.O.A.T.
Stroke Development & Change

Are there any estimates for the use of high speed video when developing or changing stroke techniques? What is the percentage of instructors/coaches - for each tennis level - that utilize high speed video as a necessary part of their instruction/coaching for stroke technique development & change.

Example, say, 95% of ATP coaches are routinely using high speed video for developing or changing stroke techniques.

These are guesses with little data, so any estimates would be an improvement.

ATP ____ %
Challenger ____%
Div 1 College ____ %
Other College _____ %
Junior Players _____ %

Top 1/3 Other Players ____ %
Middle 1/3 Other Players ____%
Bottom 1/3 Other Players ____ %
 
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Dartagnan64

G.O.A.T.
Are there any estimates for the use of high speed video when developing or changing stroke techniques? What is the percentage of instructors/coaches - for each tennis level - that utilize high speed video as a necessary part of their instruction/coaching for stroke technique development & change.
What's the point for rec players that have virtually no ability to translate what they see on high speed video into an actual change in motor skill?

Most of the reason people don't get better at tennis is because they don't put in the practice time to develop change. And why would you when the incentive is merely for ego. None of us is making money at tennis so we are not going to dedicate 3 hours a day to practice. And that's really what you need to make a major overhaul.

The techniques you need are not difficult to explain. They are difficult to develop. And it's probably more on the learner than the coach.
 
Paraphrasing here:

Mark: "There's a student that just wants a workout and a glorified ball machine at 100/hr..."

Ian: "Here's the problem, most students want that but they aren't honest enough with their coach or themselves to know that"

Ian: "When push comes to shove, if you ask them if they want to change their grip and get worse for a month before they get better, the vast majority of tennis students do not want that path."

Mark: "Is it the idea of instant gratification?"

Ian: "At the end of the day most humans don't want to change their habits."

I've been the coach who didn't get as many lessons because I was trying to change peoples habits and help them get better. But the next guy just does the same boilerplate lesson and says "good" on every shot and "more brush" and gets more lessons that way. So who was the naive one here? I was, and so is Mark Sansait. As the other pro said, it's all about providing value to the student. If they believe the lesson was worth the $100 value then that's what counts. You can't gatekeep what other peoples values should be.
Reminds me of the saying that there are people "who know the price of everything and the value of nothing."
 

curly_2350

New User
I doubt many if any are using it. Coaches are 90% there for the mental aspect, 8% fitness and footwork. Most players are using very similar strokes to what they had when they were 12. It is fascinating footage to see what’s really going on but doubt it’s very helpful really. We don’t play tennis in slow motion.
 

ptuanminh

Hall of Fame
Not a coach so my opinion doesnt count for a whole lot. From a perspective of an adult learner, i think its totally stupid to only take 2 hours of lesson a week and hope to improve in 5 6 months. I benefit a lot from one hour private lessons once in a while (since they are expensive). But the time i put in to practice what i learn in those sessions is a lot more, could be months for a simple thing. so if an adult learner only take lessons and dont practice, goood luck.
 
Maybe it's also the sweet spot of delusion:

- student thinks he's going to improve by not practicing but still keeps coming back for more even if he doesn't improve [because we know he's not practicing]
- coach encourages practice but has no way of enforcing it and even if he did, maybe he doesn't want to

I think someone of average intelligence and curiosity could find resources on the internet and if he followed them, he could make dramatic strides. Having a knowledgeable coach to make course corrections early on could save a lot of time.

It's the diligence and work ethic that's lacking on the part of the student.
 

Miki 1234

Semi-Pro
Stroke Development & Change

Are there any estimates for the use of high speed video when developing or changing stroke techniques? What is the percentage of instructors/coaches - for each tennis level - that utilize high speed video as a necessary part of their instruction/coaching for stroke technique development & change.

Example, say, 95% of ATP coaches are routinely using high speed video for developing or changing stroke techniques.

These are guesses with little data, so any estimates would be an improvement.

ATP ____ %
Challenger ____%
Div 1 College ____ %
Other College _____ %
Junior Players _____ %

Top 1/3 Other Players ____ %
Middle 1/3 Other Players ____%
Bottom 1/3 Other Players ____ %
Almost none do that.
What would be the point.
You have 3 days before tournament to chamge a stroke?
If you ever spoken with a pro player you would know they would rather cut of theor hands then change a stroke in most cases.
These are all myths.
 

Raul_SJ

G.O.A.T.
Did anyone here buy any courses from Ian? I watched him coach students on his channel and it does not inspire confidence. He is good at the clickbait and matchplay videos, but I wouldn't take him seriously for instructional videos based on his youtube content.
Disagree. Have watched Ian's "VIP videos". 3.5 players fly in from across the country to take private lessons. Pay around $500 or more a day for private lessons.

Ian and his two assistant pros Kevin Garland and Meghan (or whoever is there now) film everything on the tablet and do a great job giving immediate feedback and correction on the court.

Three excellent coaches looking at your strokes. Wow.

Not cheap but it is some of the best Adult 3.5 live coaching we have ever seen. The fact that these people fly in from everywhere speaks for itself.

Don't know about Ian's online courses. Never tried them. But his free instructional videos are solid.

Ian has said his main passion is teaching in person on the court.

And it shows.

 
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Deleted member 771407

Guest
What's the point for rec players that have virtually no ability to translate what they see on high speed video into an actual change in motor skill?

Most of the reason people don't get better at tennis is because they don't put in the practice time to develop change. And why would you when the incentive is merely for ego. None of us is making money at tennis so we are not going to dedicate 3 hours a day to practice. And that's really what you need to make a major overhaul.

The techniques you need are not difficult to explain. They are difficult to develop. And it's probably more on the learner than the coach.
Anybody can do it. I'm as recreational as it gets and video helped me a lot. Just the last two days my serve improved considerably because I stoped doing something I had no idea I was doing. I helped me see how close I hit the ball on my forehand. It helped me see the timing of my splitstep. It helped me see how stiff I was on some shot and relax my arms more. It helped me see that I wasn't coiling correctly on smashes. Etc, etc...
 
D

Deleted member 771407

Guest
I doubt many if any are using it. Coaches are 90% there for the mental aspect, 8% fitness and footwork. Most players are using very similar strokes to what they had when they were 12. It is fascinating footage to see what’s really going on but doubt it’s very helpful really. We don’t play tennis in slow motion.
I use completely different strokes. You can learn too if you get serious later in life. It's just that most adults don't care.
 
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Deleted member 771407

Guest
To keep his rep intact, Ian needs to disassociate himself from the guy with unkempt beard - looks highly unprofessional and lackadaisical in a business environment.
And also, Mark Sansait's negative outlook on stuff does not bode well for Essential tennis- he seems to believe most businesses are there to ripoff customers - it's far from truth. they provide highly valuable service and some bad apples don't make the whole thing bad. Ian seems like a decent fellow - he needs to surround himself with normal people at the minimum and great folks if possible!
I agree that the bearded guy is useless at best and cringe at worst. I'm sure he is nice but all he does is agree with everyone and nod his head, on every video. It's very distracting.
 

Harry_Wild

G.O.A.T.
There are worth while coaches, teachers of tennis but are very rare as one knows that can improve your game in a lesson or two. Best coach is watching tennis matches and see how a great top 10 tour player works through a match to win it. Remember that person will play all styles of opponents and personalities as she/he goes through the draw. I am talking about winning a match, not improvement in tennis strokes like hit the fore hand correctly, footwork, basic tennis fundamentals like that which most tennis instructors should be good at instructing, doing at the 2 - 4.5 level player. Remember, many players have great looking correct forehands, backhands and loose to someone that does not have such polish strokes all the time in tennis.
 
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Dragy

Legend
Biggest benefit I got from time with coaches came down to two things:
- Input regarding things I missed, even with video - it's both about their experience and many players observed, and about a sipmle glance from a side, fresh view. Those things might not click immediately, but since I carried them with me from session and figured out why they noticed and addressed those, I could also find some useful grain.
- Immediate feedback and immediate suggestion. Both allow for proactive practice.

But that all came from guys who were interested in helping me improve.
 

tennis_balla

Hall of Fame
The online coaching someone referred to earlier is good, but then it’s not. It’s a great way to help someone out who maybe doesn’t have access to coaches in their area or there are no good coaches where they live or can’t afford lessons. The problem with online coaching videos is that sooner rather than later the one posting will run out of content. There is only so much you can discuss and show when it comes to fundamentals, which is what most are looking for in an online coaching website.
Sooner or later the website will run out of content and start bs posts like the myth of the racket snap on the serve. Basically start posting fluff to keep things going. Or have a bunch of videos explaining footwork in huge detail when it’s not necessary.

A few years ago, I remember a bunch of former pros got together such as Annacone and Gilbert I believe and made a website for online coaching. Free memberships were offered here and you could even send in your video to get it personally assessed by a pro. Great idea but from what I remember it never really took off. There is a lot of great, free, content already on YouTube if you know where to look it almost doesn’t make sense to shell out money for these services. It’s definitely an over saturated market.


Now in terms of real on court coaching, some club players just wanna hit with a good player with tips thrown in, some wanna maintain their current level, others wanna improve but when they find out how difficult it’ll be they shy away from it. Most club players in my experience prefer group lessons/clinics. There’s a social aspect to it, they meet new people, it’s cheaper, there’s no pressure to get better and they have an extra hour of scheduled tennis per week.
However, going back to tennis coaches, some should be used car salesman :laughing: It’s amazing how they’re able to sell the little they know with words, goofy teaching aids and contraptions and drills that are complex and look advanced but are all fart and no poop. I see it daily unfortunately.
 

Dragy

Legend
The online coaching someone referred to earlier is good, but then it’s not. It’s a great way to help someone out who maybe doesn’t have access to coaches in their area or there are no good coaches where they live or can’t afford lessons. The problem with online coaching videos is that sooner rather than later the one posting will run out of content. There is only so much you can discuss and show when it comes to fundamentals, which is what most are looking for in an online coaching website.
Sooner or later the website will run out of content and start bs posts like the myth of the racket snap on the serve. Basically start posting fluff to keep things going. Or have a bunch of videos explaining footwork in huge detail when it’s not necessary.

A few years ago, I remember a bunch of former pros got together such as Annacone and Gilbert I believe and made a website for online coaching. Free memberships were offered here and you could even send in your video to get it personally assessed by a pro. Great idea but from what I remember it never really took off. There is a lot of great, free, content already on YouTube if you know where to look it almost doesn’t make sense to shell out money for these services. It’s definitely an over saturated market.
Absolutely agree, tennis is played on court, and there's only so much you can pick up as "knowledge" without try and test, at least, and mastering, at best. There're likely stages where you wanna return once previous step is solidified on court, but with limited court time many rec players won't get past couple of fundamental pieces of knowledge (and that'll already be a lot, actually).

Would be great to have access to some complex service based on actually tennis facility - getting court time and maybe some partner matching, and organized competition. And on top of that, financed by membership fees, get some clinics and some individual observation and suggestions - video based or on-site based - all included.
Maybe it's a bit niche idea with not everyone willing to pay membership when public courts are available, and many prefering to purchase exact hour of dedicated attention from a coach. But the community and convenience might be both more motivating and efficient.

Imagine if tennis tips forum had it's own facility where we could meet, play, learn? Have courts, tennis walls, ball machines and slow-mo cameras under direct sunlight? I would pay my fee!
 
D

Deleted member 771407

Guest
Yeah adding cameras on some courts and giving access to the video for those who whish it would be awesome too.
 

Ash_Smith

Legend
Its pandoras box right there.
Tennis is a pyramid scam.
And in such worst coaches will trive first.
Its almost impossible to see short term progress and there is nothing tennis offers in long term except few lousy price money tournamets were you end up playing for free.
To make a living as 100% honest coach is next to impossible.
So most dont even try to get to 10%
And very few will be able to tell since as i said it takes years to make real progress with a player and even if that happens years have passed and its the end of the road.
Pro tennis players are born that way. Great coaching cant make that happen , maybe just speed it up a bit.
So you are left with decent to good players countless hard hours as a coach for almost no real results right away and long term still nothing special and the end is there already when player reaches college years.
So from 14 to 18 work like a mf so kid can go to college and you barely make a living while risking all along that kid wakes up on the wrong side of bed and quits or fires you. So better to coach granny or tennis school. Or deluded tennis fans if you can take the talk.
Same or better money less work just more sleaze.
Or be an extra sleaze and destroy kids with somewhat potential with stories of grandeur so they believe you anything you say and work less hehe.
Ummm... what???

Of course it's possible to make a living as a "100% honest coach" (although actually as I type that I'm not sure I know what you mean by that use of phrase).

You speak like the only goal for a coach is for a player to go pro - there is so much more to be being a coach and so many more ways to judge success and value than just whether a player goes pro.
 

Miki 1234

Semi-Pro
Ummm... what???

Of course it's possible to make a living as a "100% honest coach" (although actually as I type that I'm not sure I know what you mean by that use of phrase).

You speak like the only goal for a coach is for a player to go pro - there is so much more to be being a coach and so many more ways to judge success and value than just whether a player goes pro.
Never said it was the only way to judge.
But in this forum 95% of the topics are 3 players.
Coach that lives from coaching serious players needs to cope with that expetations day in day out.
No way around it, top is the only thing most people respect and want.
Meaning they want way more then they can achieve.
D3 college potential wants to go d1 and so on.
And that is prone to manipulation.
Most coaches exploit that the best they can, either deluding players or parents how good they are or deluding players or parents how good coach they are.
Or both.
Truth is the enemy in tennis.
No one wants to hear the full truth.
And thats fine.
But to really care to improve all students is next to impossible in such enviroment.
Its like walking a thin line between the conflict and progress day in day out.
Even to make a living would be a huge problem.
 
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giantschwinn

Semi-Pro
Ummm... what???

Of course it's possible to make a living as a "100% honest coach" (although actually as I type that I'm not sure I know what you mean by that use of phrase).

You speak like the only goal for a coach is for a player to go pro - there is so much more to be being a coach and so many more ways to judge success and value than just whether a player goes pro.
Ash, how can you make a honest living and accept all that money and pushing your students if the goal is not to go pro? What's the goal then. A quarter of a D1 scholarship? I see all these kids with the goal of playing for D1 schools. And I am thinking to myself, go hit the books and quit wasting your time with tennis.
 

eah123

Rookie
For adults, I agree that most in-person tennis lessons are useless for game/skill improvement. However, because most adults have busy lives, paying for lessons forces them to take out time to get practice that they normally wouldn't get. It is difficult for most people to find a practice partner with the same schedule. So I would argue that lessons help adult players maintain whatever level they have achieved. An adult who does a clinic once a week and then plays recreationally with friends on weekends should be a better player than if they did no lessons at all.
 
D

Deleted member 771407

Guest
Ash, how can you make a honest living and accept all that money and pushing your students if the goal is not to go pro? What's the goal then. A quarter of a D1 scholarship? I see all these kids with the goal of playing for D1 schools. And I am thinking to myself, go hit the books and quit wasting your time with tennis.
Ever heard of fun ? That's what it is about. Do you learn instruments or dance to go pro ? Same thing. It is a pleasure and a great feeling to become better at something you like.
 
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Dartagnan64

G.O.A.T.
Anybody can do it. I'm as recreational as it gets and video helped me a lot. Just the last two days my serve improved considerably because I stoped doing something I had no idea I was doing. I helped me see how close I hit the ball on my forehand. It helped me see the timing of my splitstep. It helped me see how stiff I was on some shot and relax my arms more. It helped me see that I wasn't coiling correctly on smashes. Etc, etc...
there’s a difference between Chas high speed video analysis and your “iPhone myself”.
Seeing yourself is invaluable to find flaws. It does very little to fix those flaws unless you put in the work. Most rec players don’t put in the work. Present company excluded.
 

tennis_balla

Hall of Fame
Most rec/club players know what they are doing wrong, that’s easy to spot. Anyone who’s been playing tennis for a short while can tell you what you’re doing wrong. Almost everyone here who responds to video threads asking for advice on serve, forehand etc know what the player is doing wrong. How to fix it, the simplest and quickest way possible and implement that in a match situation, something that’s new and doesn’t yet feel natural. That’s where the good coaches separate themselves from the pack.
 

ChaelAZ

G.O.A.T.
Maybe it's also the sweet spot of delusion:
- student thinks he's going to improve by not practicing but still keeps coming back for more even if he doesn't improve [because we know he's not practicing]
- coach encourages practice but has no way of enforcing it and even if he did, maybe he doesn't want to
I was a personal trainer for years, and this was a very similar experience overall to coaching anything. People come to you and pay ridiculous amounts of money, but many assume that by paying they will get some benefit from osmosis or such. There is also a percentage that do it for accountability and to say they are doing it. Neither of those scenarios benefit them for improvement really. Case in point I was training a client - female, overweight by about 50 pounds, low cardio level (out of breath walking up one flight of stairs), and joint pain/issues starting. Developed a workout regiment, nutrition plan, etc. as a complete package with benchmarks. On my wide the ONLY control I had was the time we had working out, reviewing, and tracking progress. About two month in she did have better flexibility and showed improve cardio, but tells me she is not losing enough weight so she is going to try another trainer. We had talked about her nutritional plan as a cornerstone of everything, and along the way she merely said, yeah I have been doing good. So I asked her about meals that week, and of course there were several trips to restaurants, large meals, and all kinds of splurge, but she just assumed (even though it was talked about from the start) that her working out and session would compensate. I laid everything out again, but she still thought it was something that I was doing that was keeping her from losing weight. I saw her go through 3 other trainers over the next several months at the gym. Could also give an example of an older cardiac rehab client that through their own will and learning was able to reach their goals with the exact opposite experience.

The parallel to me is, even if a coach is giving you excellent tools and training during a session, if there isn't a full commitment to improvement that the participant brings to their whole progress there isn't too much that can be done (that sweet spot of delusion rightfully mentioned). As much as a coach might be bad, so many students are just bad students. FWIW.


Overall in terms of coaching being useless, I haven't watched the videos, but I can surmise what they are referring to and can agree there are some folks out there who simply run drills and really are not tuned into individual player needs. Most coaching though? I dunno about that. For me, I've learn much about that both in assisting coaching (I was the drill runner but also helped players individually) and the years I spent with my son in tennis, from juniors programs, high performance coaches, high school tennis, and different tennis academies. It runs the gamut. I have been lucky enough to see some of the best coaching and have also had an unfortunate experience and having a very short lived time with someone who was a top level player, but the worst coach I have ever seen.
 

giantschwinn

Semi-Pro
Ever heard of fun ? That's what it is about. Do you learn instruments or dance to go pro ? Same thing. It is a pleasure and a great feeling to become better at something you like.
I'm talking about kids in a tennis academy, home schooled types. Not your casual players. Parents spending crazy amount of money and time on tennis and worse neglecting education. When goal is not matching money and time spend makes these lessons ripoffs.
 

Miki 1234

Semi-Pro
Here is how moratouglu academy works.
You bring your kid there, they have everything courts, coaches , sparrings you name it.
They see what your kid likes the best, drilling , technicque work , sparrings or matches and make a plan to include that.
Everyone there is a pro amd works hard.
So far so good right.
Well first miss is that kid kinda chooses what he wants to do, not what he needs.
If he cant play points he needs matches with slightly worse players, but he hates to play those etc...
They will drill the kid amd give him what he likes.
Second they dont react on minor issues directly.
Lets say kid is not giving his best, they will motivate him as best they can and stay positive as long as the kid doesnt snap all the way.
And then they react when its obvious.
Still kid has everything working for him so he feels he doesnt need to snap.
So that time can be a long one.
When kid decides he doesnt care but still stays there and coaches just push that.
Its all money after all.
So they avoid conflict at all cost.
Just give the kids what they want and they will stay longer .
If they would adress bad habbit right away then there is the very possible conflict with the kid and there goes possible months of money.
So coaches just stay possitive and take all the crap kids throw at them .
This is low lvl coaching but high lvl earning potential
 

tennis_balla

Hall of Fame
Here is how moratouglu academy works.
You bring your kid there, they have everything courts, coaches , sparrings you name it.
They see what your kid likes the best, drilling , technicque work , sparrings or matches and make a plan to include that.
Everyone there is a pro amd works hard.
So far so good right.
Well first miss is that kid kinda chooses what he wants to do, not what he needs.
If he cant play points he needs matches with slightly worse players, but he hates to play those etc...
They will drill the kid amd give him what he likes.
Second they dont react on minor issues directly.
Lets say kid is not giving his best, they will motivate him as best they can and stay positive as long as the kid doesnt snap all the way.
And then they react when its obvious.
Still kid has everything working for him so he feels he doesnt need to snap.
So that time can be a long one.
When kid decides he doesnt care but still stays there and coaches just push that.
Its all money after all.
So they avoid conflict at all cost.
Just give the kids what they want and they will stay longer .
If they would adress bad habbit right away then there is the very possible conflict with the kid and there goes possible months of money.
So coaches just stay possitive and take all the crap kids throw at them .
This is low lvl coaching but high lvl earning potential
The example given is your first hand experience?
 
D

Deleted member 771407

Guest
I'm talking about kids in a tennis academy, home schooled types. Not your casual players. Parents spending crazy amount of money and time on tennis and worse neglecting education. When goal is not matching money and time spend makes these lessons ripoffs.
Oh ok my bad then. that's a small minority though
 

giantschwinn

Semi-Pro
The example given is your first hand experience?
That's how academy works. Not limited to Moratouglu. The top players go there for free/ scholarships. The mediocre ones pay the full price to be there. These mediocre players' parents have spend too much money to quit now. Most of them justify paying because they want their kids to play "D1 tennis".
 

sovertennis

Professional
It's a worthy discussion but ultimately the trio tried to come up with a cookie cutter synopsis for a more complicated topic. Sure, some coaches are not very good and their lessons reflect this, but after spending 20+ years in the business I am certain very few are in it to make money, because I've not seen, or personally experienced, that there is a lot of money to be made coaching tennis (that, on top of the lousy hours, often being at the whim of weather, few if any benefits and little chance of promotion). The sub standard coaches, in my experience, are those who fell into the job (eg played in college and didn't move on to another career) and found themselves 10-15 years later burnt out and with no other job possibilities. Thus, they continue with tennis instruction and offer bland, low energy cookie cutter lessons. They did not start out to be bad coaches, it just turned out that way.

I've never coached full time, but I've worked at clubs, camps and resorts. I'm the part time guy that they discuss, now in a public park. It's me, my basket and my player(s), all of whom are weekly repeats. I don't charge anywhere near 100 bucks an hour, frankly because I don't believe a tennis lesson is worth that much. It's a great part time job, in part because my income need is low and my "passion" (as the podcasters kept saying) is high.
 

jmnk

Hall of Fame
Most rec/club players know what they are doing wrong, that’s easy to spot. Anyone who’s been playing tennis for a short while can tell you what you’re doing wrong. Almost everyone here who responds to video threads asking for advice on serve, forehand etc know what the player is doing wrong. How to fix it, the simplest and quickest way possible and implement that in a match situation, something that’s new and doesn’t yet feel natural. That’s where the good coaches separate themselves from the pack.
^^^ this so much. I always say, if there was such a thing as 'theoretical tennis' I would be world class. Because I know what I, or an opponent does wrong. But I do not know how to fix it. Like for example, what drills to use to fix the problem. Anyone with some tennis knowledge can look at my volleys and say "well, you are swinging too much, volley is a short punch". Sure, I know that too - now, tell me how to fix it. A good coach knows how to fix it. And the difference between on-line course and in-person coaching is that each player learns differently. If you happen to find on-line instructions that suit you, great. But if that on-line course explains something the way that just does not jive with you - it will be impossible for you to get any value out of that.
Like take a serve. For some folks a concept of 'flicking the wrist' makes sense. For others it's 'hitting inside part of the ball". For others it is "just throw a racket at the ball". Without in-person session with a good coach it is hard to say what clues will work for a given person. Now, obviously, you need to back that one hour session with tens hours of practice for anything to make any difference - but that is a different topic.
 

Miki 1234

Semi-Pro
The example given is your first hand experience?
Moratoglu training camps, coached by the coach, see this vids he basically says it all, i watched few more cant remember the names now but this 2 will do .
Also I can find logical fallacy in most of his vids, in some its just a single word here and there.
He is very very smart guy and great bussines man , knows so much about tennis its crazy.
But in the end its bussines as usual.
How much he spends with a player, what advice he gives, talks a lot without saying nothing etc... its all calculated.
His personal gain does come first always.
His main moto is never coach angry.
Anger is to be controled not avoided.
Without it there is no chance to help in any way todays weak and spoiled kids which are vast majority on courts today.
Being always positive
sounds really good haha but its fail like any other .
 
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Rubens

Hall of Fame
Good instructors are rare. Too many instructors just feed balls from the basket, and say "aim higher" when the student hits the net, and "don't aim too high" when the ball goes out:oops:
 
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GuyClinch

Legend
I don't think tennis lessons are a scam or pyramid scheme. <g>

I think if you get private lessons - and do the ball machine - and hit with a partner - and then play matches - most people will improve (depending on athleticism and if you are near your ceiling). You can't just take some group lessons here and there and get better at tennis. Most of those bad group instructors are very decent instructors in private lessons.

For example I have only had about six privates in the last 4 years - so I don't really get a lot of lessons. BUT - every time they would video my serve with their phone and such. If you told any of them what you want to do - they would absolutely work on that. I told one I wanted to work on my forehand and they spent the whole lesson working on that.

Most people aren't going to do what it takes. Once you get to say 3.5 it takes many people some serious commitment to advance. I think most people are like me - they are happy enough with the level they play at - and are not going to pay an arm and leg in time and money to get better. But demolishing all those coaches like that - not cool.

They have some apps and such where you can get private coaches to come to some public courts - and that way you can save on court fees. The thing is tennis is really a sport for the rich - if you want lessons beyond the basics. I mean so rich you don't have to care about your money that much. So for you $500 extra on just private lessons is a nothing burger. If you have money like that - they are totally worth it.
 
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GuyClinch

Legend
It's a worthy discussion but ultimately the trio tried to come up with a cookie cutter synopsis for a more complicated topic. Sure, some coaches are not very good and their lessons reflect this, but after spending 20+ years in the business I am certain very few are in it to make money, because I've not seen, or personally experienced, that there is a lot of money to be made coaching tennis (that, on top of the lousy hours, often being at the whim of weather, few if any benefits and little chance of promotion). The sub standard coaches, in my experience, are those who fell into the job (eg played in college and didn't move on to another career) and found themselves 10-15 years later burnt out and with no other job possibilities. Thus, they continue with tennis instruction and offer bland, low energy cookie cutter lessons. They did not start out to be bad coaches, it just turned out that way.

I've never coached full time, but I've worked at clubs, camps and resorts. I'm the part time guy that they discuss, now in a public park. It's me, my basket and my player(s), all of whom are weekly repeats. I don't charge anywhere near 100 bucks an hour, frankly because I don't believe a tennis lesson is worth that much. It's a great part time job, in part because my income need is low and my "passion" (as the podcasters kept saying) is high.

Yeah there is not much money in coaching - for sure. Had a guy who gave me a lesson this last summer and he moved to Dallas to go into banking. Coaches are not in it just for the money. Sure they need to pay bills but this generalization is not fair - the reason coaches give cookie cutter lessons is that often what the student wants.

They don't want their strokes broken down - because they have to play in a match later this week for their 3.5 team. They just want to stay 'sharp' and hit with a pro - and they have the money to make it happen.
 

GuyClinch

Legend
For adults, I agree that most in-person tennis lessons are useless for game/skill improvement. However, because most adults have busy lives, paying for lessons forces them to take out time to get practice that they normally wouldn't get. It is difficult for most people to find a practice partner with the same schedule. So I would argue that lessons help adult players maintain whatever level they have achieved. An adult who does a clinic once a week and then plays recreationally with friends on weekends should be a better player than if they did no lessons at all.
This is a good point. If you are going to only practice one hour a week - you probably would get the greatest benefit from that one hour with a pro. So you can stay sharp for your league buddies or and social matches you might have.

I think that the reason why people think tennis lessons are a rip off is that they expect more then they can deliver.. Ever take a ski lesson? It's costs more but the main thing is it lets you cut the lines and ski with someone who is good. Maybe they give you a tip or two - but unless you are super rich and spend serious money - taking 50 lessons in a season - most don't seem to Ski much better.
 
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