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The Tennis Business Discussion Forum Archive

[tennisbiz2] Starting a student without a racket or ball

From: Steve Garcia <>
Date: Thu 5 Oct 2006 10:20:24 +0100

Hi Ronald,

I always start a new student without a racket and without a ball, because it
allows them to find the right swing without the complication of actually
trying to hit the ball. I normally do this for a couple of minutes.

I then give them the racket, show them the semi-western grip and after a few
minutes they are swinging without restraint. This means that they will do a
full "looping forehand" without worrying about the ball flying over the

By this time the swing is natural - they have never known anything else - so
when I finally introduce the ball after about 5 - 10 minutes depending on
the student, they continue to swing correctly. Obviously there will be
differences in how quickly a student hits the ball accurately, but at least
the swing is correct right from the outset.

After about 20 - 30 minutes I introduce the double handed backhand in the
same way.

In a single one hour lesson with a student who has good hand/eye
coordination I can confidently expect them to be rallying with me at a basic
level. If a student does not have very good HEC, then it takes a little
longer for them to hit the ball well, but at least they are swinging

I think the idea of a few weeks swinging without a ball would be very dull -
but a few minutes doing this could be the most important few minutes of a
new students tennis life.

If their swing is correct right from the start, then they can't go far

Steve Garcia

Received on Mon Oct 09 2006 - 08:50:45 CDT

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