Who Leads the Tennis Training?

Thirty years ago, not many people knew what performance training was. At least it wasn’t mainstream.

Today, parents, athletes, sports coaches, and anyone with a voice seems to think they know what’s best when it comes to performance training. Still, unfortunately, many performance coaches are falling prey to the pressures.

The performance coach isn’t powerful enough in his or her conviction of how a tennis player or team should be trained. Often, the performance coach is easily persuaded by the player, parent, or coach to do some “drill” they watched on YouTube.

When a player, parent, or coach can’t see the big picture, the reason you are progressing, they become bored. 

That’s human nature today. What makes the situation worse is that there are five million tennis footwork and speed drills on the internet, and everyone who searches them thinks they are experts.

In addition, when a player watches the top pros like Serena, Coco, Federer using these drills, their mindset is this must be the secret sauce, and “I should be doing it, too.”

Often, coaches only aim for an exercise that might get a higher social media following or a quick share. They have fallen prey to forces outside of right and wrong – It now becomes what others want to see.

The importance of having the initial meeting before you start training an individual player or take on a job with a team can’t be overstated.

During this meeting, you need to clarify that your role is to improve performance and win bonus points for exciting, jaw-dropping drills.

Your job isn’t to get more likes on social media, and it certainly isn’t to please parents or coaches by doing everything they want to see.

Of course, you will listen and take in productive advice that may help you decide on specific strategies to improve performance, but you are not going to be “bullied” into doing drills you know are not effective.

Lastly, I hope coaches do some of the circus act drills because of outside pressure.

What I mean is, if performance coaches are coming up with these circus act drills on their own –  that’s disturbing to me. It means we have such a long way to go in our profession to clean up how we teach.

A singular DRILL is like a messenger. Its job is to deliver valuable input to improve a specific pattern or skill. 

If the drill doesn’t abide by human laws of motion, have sound biomechanical carryover, and drive one of the variations of the 7 Movement Speed Patterns (linear acceleration, max velocity, shuffle, Lateral Run, Hip Turn, backpedal, jump) or the linking skills (split step, Glide Step, deceleration techniques), or some other intentional skill, then it’s not doing its job.

Teach to the athlete or team’s needs. Don’t allow outside influence to have you do something you know is incorrect!


Young coaches who have not been established yet are often easily persuaded if they don’t have control of their program. The Certified Tennis Speed Specialist course is designed to give young, experienced coaches the proper tools to stick to their guns. The skills, patterns, methods, and philosophy in the CTSS are proven and based on science and years of experience. Don’t make the mistake of allowing this educational course to be untapped. Sign up now by clicking this link to jump light-years ahead with your tennis speed performance knowledge – -> www.CTSS.co

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