Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by Stergios, Mar 2, 2013.
Wow I'm impressed. You've made some excellent progress. Definitely keep the videos coming.
No freaking way. Not happening.
He won't know. Just make an educated guess based on who he is playing. Since they won't have official ratings either it will be just a lot of conjecture and speculation. I doubt it really matters much though in the overall scheme of things. If he is still playing, improving and enjoying it a year from now or 5 years from now, that will be more important.
So far all of these "beginner to pro threads" I have seen. Most guys stop posting after they realize after an initial rapid ascent through the lower ratings, things get a lot harder at the upper levels.
That's true--but this case is a little different because he seems to be getting world-class daily coaching. So if he sticks with it it'll be an interesting experiment.
Is his coach world class?
His coach is a 25 year old Futures player, but I never heard about his coaching merits and qualifications. I also took lessons from a Futures player once....not better than an experienced, trained coach at 5.0 playing level.
As to the 5.0 standard, I just hope it is not a guess or judgement related on the written NTRP description of 5.0 level as that is quite subjective, and a real 4.0 level could fit that verbal description as well.
why is a Greek rating system not used here?
the whole thing is just odd.
After all these feedback I'll try to do my best in documenting the process and as I mentioned before, and you're very right, I'm taking injury prevention very seriously.
I'll keep you posted,
Thanks for giving a thump up to the chosen schedule of mine.
I'm starting slowly to compete. I played more or less ten times before I started the project. Then I stopped since I changed all I've learnt by my self. Last friday I had my very first match after I started taking lessons.
I think by the end of the month I'll add two to three matches a week to my schedule (What do you think? More or less should I play?).
I'm having lots of fun. Although I had my first mental break down not long ago. I'll talk about that as it might be interesting to others too.
Currently I'm living on savings. I changed quite a few things in my lifestyle in order to afford it. I sold a few things and I moved to a tiny apartment in order to finance this project.
And to say no to work it's not always easy. But one has to make a choice .
Although I might be taking some small projects (2-3 days a month) from time to time as this project needs some pockets . Oh, in case you wondered, I was working as a film production co-ordinator mostly.
I know what you mean.
I always ask for advice and always think it twice. At the end I'm making my own mind and keep the advice I got as reference to my failures and successes. And learning goes on...
You're right about being analytical it helps a lot me too. But as you said a coach is something much needed. Especially if part of your goal is to improve as fast as you possible can. And honestly in my case I don't know if I would have gone any further with this project with out Paris.
Well done so far on the serve. I'd be impressed if you got to 3.5 in a year, though.
Good luck to you!
This. I've seen 3.5s who didn't have as good a serve as you had back in September. Not knocking you as you are obviously an athletic person, but I'd say this is more of an 'NTRP 3.0 to 5.0' project.
On that note, the only thing I'd offer on your serve (and by no means am I a teaching pro) is to work on your toss. If you look at your serves in March vs your 'shadow swing', the main difference is where you land.
In the actual serves, you land falling to your left and not as much 'into' the court. But your shadow swings have you going forward, and not nearly as much to your left, if at all. My best guess is your toss needs to be more into the court and less over your left shoulder.
Just my $0.02.
hehe! Thanks .
You're right. And I'm working on that as well. I just started to play a few matches. Hope that will help. Although my coach is very skeptical about playing at this early stage of the project.
If you have any advice though of how this project could be possible I would like to hear it.
That's true! I could do that. But being a 5 in the number it's not the goal at all. Although a good strategy for someone who's goal is as such :wink:.
As Goober, very thoughtfully said, it's not about the number but about the real skills.
So any other advice on how to improve if you have the time and motivation needed?
Thanks to both of you for sharing your thoughts,
Thanks for posting. As I mentioned previously it's something I'll give my best possible shot. Wish me luck and if you have any thoughts or ideas of how this would be by any means possible, please share them.
You got a vein there I must admit. And that was my previous concern before going public with this project. You can see that on my story up to 2009 (up to 2012 is in my 2013's bucket list but not in priority at the moment).
As long as I'm healthy emotionally and physically I'll keep going. Also the discussions we're having here are giving me a great deal of motivation to keep on going.
But life some times is unpredictable. But one thing is almost certain. And that is that as far as I committed to posting here, I'll let you know of these ups and downs as well.
Cheers & thanks for the great question,
Sorry I forgot to answear the last one.
I don't have a backup plan. At least not at the moment. And I avoid making one on purpose. I actually try hard not to make one. And that's purelly beacase I know that since I do that, it will mean to me that I'm having second thoughts of the success of this project. And that to me it's not the 100% I'm aiming for.
Wow, I'm becoming very sincere here .
(That was a not2self thing, apologies )
I think that most of commenters have agreed of how of a hi level is a legit 5.0.
And I might be the one who knows the very least of it in here.
Although I had the pleasure to see players playing live that are way more than five. But it wasn't very clear before I sat in court, behind the base line at eye level that I understood the bullets that the players were firing of their rackets.
And that was a moment that took my breath away for a while and got me thinking of the project. But still it was that very moment that made the experiment more interesting and appealing to me.
I'll go for it.
Are there so few? I really didn't know that; Does anyone know how many? I tried once to find out at USTA's website but didn't found the answer although I might missed it.
Well, it's all relative. There are probably a whole bunch of 5.0 level players that just play Open tournaments (or just coach) and don't really have a ranking. So whatever the "official" number would be, it would be wrong. Probably by a large margin.
Paris is realistic indeed but an optimist at the same time as me.
Actually it took him 8 years to get to the finals of Orange Bowl in 2005.
Here is what Orange Bowl Tournament Director, Lew Brewer has said " I remember Paris very well. His performance at the Orange Bowl that year was outstanding. He was the first player ever to make it to the finals who had also played in the qualifying event - quite an achievement ! "
And that's a hell of a progress for him I believe. Of course I'm biased on that as he is my coach and by now a good friend but 23 in the world at age 17 isn't bad either he has also played in all four grand slams, some twice.
You're right, there is more to learn than loose when you give yourself on something.
And definitely I'll agree that it's the journey that counts the most!
Thanks for posting,
This is from a few years ago, but the proportions don't change much. To put it in perspective, 5.0 is the top 1 to 1.5% of the playing population while about 85% of the popoulation falls between 3.0 and 4.0. So out of 300,000+ USTA members that year, only about 3,000-3,500 had a season-end 5.0 rating. There were less than 150 players rated 5.5.
I don't know what it is about tennis that makes ordinary people think they can become extraordinary athletes in a short amount of time. My advice is to be patient with your progress. Learn to walk before you try to run. Instead of saying your goal is to be a 5.0 player in a year, you should be saying you just want to be the best player you can be. Set smaller goals along the way such as acquiring skills/shots, maybe getting ready to play your first tournament.
Great thing about tennis is that you can play the rest of your life. When I see these threads about people setting a lofty goal of being a pro, a DI player, or even 5.0 within a year or two my immediate thought is that you are just setting yourself up for certain failure. Will you enjoy the sport less playing 4.0 tennis a year from now? There's a lot of good tennis at 4.0. Just enjoy the fact that you're playing and you're improving.
After watching your old serve i was all ready to laugh at your progress (or lack of) but DANG! You really have improved!
Keep it up man! you are obviously an athletic person ... I still doubt you can get to 5.0 in 1 year BUT my doubt is mainly based on the fact that I don't think you can get enough match experience by then ... You very well may have strokes on par with 5.0 given your improvement in your serve in such a short time.
Goran, I completely agree. Assume that you cannot reach your potential until you have put in your hours and just grind it out. Plus, it should be fun! The point of playing the game is that you enjoy the game right?
I heard people became ATP Pro in 3 years when they started tennis at 50 years old.
So getting to 5.0 in a year is possible. But it is a tough journey.
For the first 6 months, focusing on basic FH, BH and serves. DON'T play any matches in the first 6 months.
Good luck. Looking forward more stories.
No. Maybe teaching pro you mean?
Absurd, the notion of making ATP playing pro 6.0 in 3 years.
Easy, for an adult to become a teaching pro within 3 years of tennis. He only needs to be a good 3.0.
Wow what a comment; I'm humbled with your openness on the general idea.
I didn't know Deion Sanders before your comment. He has an interesting life as I read a little on him. I might also check his book.
I do have a great team and with out them this project would have been out of question most probably.
As for the mind game I have taken a note as many of others have mentioned it as a crucial part of the game. Though I do my best for it as I mentioned earlier. But if you have something in mind that I might be missing or you think it will give me an extra boost, please let me know.
And thanks once again for your uplifting comment. Much needed .
Just a quick note to let you know that I'm getting to all the comments in here. As I take note on advice and new ideas. If you have asked me something that I haven't answered yet, I will soon as I'm getting to them in a linear order.
Although, I'm tempted to answer some great posts on the spot as I'm reading them, I keep my self in order .
He got 2 ATP points.
could you cite a name of that alleged player?
I wanted to answer to your comments as as soon as I read them. As you're giving such a good feedback and Ideas. Although as I mentioned earlier today it might take a day or two. Apologies.
As DakotaM and others did, you got it very right. The aim is to be the best possible in a year from now. And I'm glad we share this same goal .
Of course its a bold goal. But that's part of my character. Although very quite outside I'm always aiming for the best. The main Idea was to challenge what's possible today. Take it further and share it with others. And that's why I considered a playing level of five to be the appropriate for the project.
Thank you for wishing me luck. As I've said before it's much needed and always welcomed .
And as I mentioned in DakotaM's previous comment, I have recently commit my self to share what I learn from this project in this forum as well as my Wordpress site.
A separate thread will be created as I see others will agree on that too. And as you advised I will post any updates such as my serve progress in that new thread too, so it would be complete.
To be motivated is essential for the successful completion of the project. And to possibly motivate others a part of it.
On a personal note, let me acknowledge you that this discussion has given me tons of extra motivation and I'm thankful I took the step to share this project with others.
The feedback I already have taken on my serve is beyond my expectations. And it will serve well on my progression. I'll try to provide as much as possible useful info in here the following day, weeks and hopefully months to come.
Oh and I never thought about the value of this documentation in my later years. But this couldn't be more true! Good point.
PS. I'm geting on the rest of your post bellow as I ran out of the number of allowed emoticons.
It is a great goal indeed and I'm happy you seeing it as such.
I don't know if I'll be able to kick your *** . But one is certain and that's that I'd take any given opportunity to play you by the end of the year.
And I'm honestly keeping a note for this idea.
Oh and you heard right, all of that can be found in Greece : ).
Althogh by the age of six we only knew I was good at fixing and occationaly braking things . I'm awkwardly lucky I don't have kids and I'm not married just yet .
Ok Stergios. Thanks for your replies. I'll be watching your threads (videos and comments) and progress during the coming year. I'm just getting back on the court after being sick for 2 months. It feels great. Was able to actually play competitive sets (only 1 each day) Wednesday and Thursday.
It looks like we're both pretty motivated. But a word of caution, don't get too cheerfully 'high' on the motivation thing because there will be times when you won't be very cheerful about getting out on the court to practice, but that your commitment requires you to do it anyway. That is, things can get a bit tedious at times ... seem like a 'chore'. But this is where the serious passion and capacity for working toward your goal, for improving, comes in -- enabling you to work out of ruts that you might (and probably will) get into, and move from one plateau to the next.
If you never were an athlete as a child, you will never be one now.
It starts around 6 years old, when you find you can run, throw, jump, catch, and react quicker than any other kid in your class.
I knew it by 2nd grade for sure.
Me too. I actually won an award for being the best all around athlete in my high school my senior year (a long time ago ... athletes are on average quite a bit better now, I think). But alas, time and lots of wonderful partying over the years, has taken its toll.
I was the worst ever starting PF my senior year, and for sure, the worst ever OLB in Varsity football.
Of course, I was 5'6" and 117 lbs. when I graduated....
Anybody who plays varsity high school football at that size has my respect. We had a 5'6" fullback. But then he weighed about 190 lbs. and he was pissed off ... all the time. He was like this angry, furious bowling ball rolling down the field. Absolutely minimal athletic ability, but strong as a bull. With, I'm guessing, about the same IQ. You did NOT want to get in his way. Unless you knew stuff that he didn't. Which of course a lot of people did. So, he got tackled a lot and remained frustrated and angry. Great blocker though.
Well I think you can probably get to 3.0 or 2.5 relatively quickly through some "intense training". However it will be hard from there and I see moving from 3.0-5.0 in 8 months which would be about what you would have left as reletively impossible.
Our two running backs, Al Allston (6'2, 220lbs, and WayneMcConico (6'3, and 210lbs.) were all city and all state NorthernCalifornia.
I never failed to tackle either one on one on one drills. That's offensive lineman, one of them behind 5 yards, and me on the defensive side, taking on the lineman, who usually weighed in over 230, up to 275 lbs. The lane is 7 yards wide, and I gotta stop them for less than a 5 yard gain at worse.
Well Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi from Pakistan supposedly started tennis at age 14 and was a Top 20 Jr. by age 18 and turned pro the same year so I guess anything is possible. Although the former seems 100% impossible to me it is corroborated by the player himself according to interviews I read but I have to think there's some embellishment in there somewhere
Well according to ATP website and his bio there he started playing tennis at 12, and before that practiced cricket (hand eye coordination, stroke mechanics) and swimming.
So far all those stories of people starting tennis at 14 or later and later became worldclass have never been confirmed, as far as i know.
For boys there is a technique -coordination winownwide open up to age 14, for girls it closes a bit already at 12.
so an adult starting in his late 20s, very difficult to get to advanced level 5.0 at all, maybe after 3 years.
The Pak doubles player above became top ranked jr at 18 , 6 years later (NTRP 6.0).
Apparently he is an exceptionally gifted athlete and tennis player who had the benefit of all the necessary advantages as a youngster. Given this, I don't think it's that far fetched to have reached world class playing level in 5 years.
Ok, so he started playing tennis at 12, reaching top tier world class level in 6-7 years. This is more plausible. Was he world class level, just not top tier, during his 5th year (ie., at 16-17)?
Stergios, your thread (and a few others) has motivated me to start my own sort of diary or journal thread tracking my comeback from 36 years away from tennis and also from my most recent Crohn's disease flare up.
I'm going to start it later today (here in the tips/instruction forum) after I get done editing some video from a set I played on Thursday March 7 with one of our fellow Talk Tennis members who was in Fort Lauderdale with his family.
Looking forward to following your thread(s). Best wishes as always.
The bio on the ATP site is put together weird... but in this interview he clearly says the first time he set foot on a tennis court was 14.
"When I was 14, my mother took me to the tennis courts to see if I had any talent in tennis. The coaches at the court were really surprised that it was my first time."
By age 16 the ITF picked him up for sponsorship..
"In 1997, his father, Ehtsham, wrote a letter to the International Tennis Federation for his son to be one of 10 juniors on their annual development programme. “If I had not got onto that course, I would have had no chance and would have probably studied at college in the [United] States,” said Qureshi."
Sorry, hastily put that together, gotta hit the sack, interested to see what you guys think though
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