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Bill Patton's Articles (20)

The Art of High School Tennis book by Bill Patton

The Art of Coaching High School Tennis

An intimate look at the world of high school Tennis through a coach's eyes for other coaches, players, and parents. 



Added by Bill Patton on March 6, 2014 at 9:30pm — 2 Comments

Life / Success Coaching through Tennis

Recently, I have gone professional with life coaching.  Since 2010 I intentionally began to give life lessons through Tennis, but really those lessons began much earlier.  So, lately I have heard the calling to not only teach Tennis, but to coach life.  The results have been amazing, and energizing to my clients and to me personally.  I want to reach out to you.  Do you know anyone who would benefit from a powerful and fearless two hour conversation, phone is fine, in regard to their Tennis,…


Added by Bill Patton on November 22, 2013 at 10:31am — No Comments

I can now edit your Tennis Video of you hitting and offer suggestions.

I found this great site called, which allows people to prepay for a $5 amount for a wide range of services.  As for me, send me a clip of you playing for about 1 minute and I will edit the video, and give you at least ONE strong concept to work on and develop your game.  Generally, I can get this done in two days turnaround, sometimes much faster.  

Added by Bill Patton on October 2, 2013 at 4:31am — No Comments

Getting Involved

I have decided that I like my new career as a mobile Tennis professional who goes here and there teaching.  Recently I dedicated myself to helping follow up with new people to Tennis, especially in the East Bay Tennis group. I want to help everyone find a great place to play.  Of course, it would be nice if I also picked up a few lessons from that, but I will help people regardless.  Currently I am weighing a geographical switch to my Tennis, will I gravitate more toward Oakland, Hayward, or…


Added by Bill Patton on September 18, 2013 at 9:36am — No Comments

Haha Sucker Moment

Recently I had one of those moments where I caught the suckers off guard.  Its a great idea to hit a completely unpredictable low percentage shot, just to make them think.   It was doubles, and I had been lobbed.  When lobbed 99% of the time I lob back.  My opponents began to drift forward cautiously so they could come to the net, but still be in position to hit an easy overhead if I did not lob perfectly.  I had looked over my shoulder to see them on my way back.  So I.... turned and ripped…


Added by Bill Patton on November 16, 2012 at 11:31am — 2 Comments

Invited to Pro-Am, as the Pro

This does not happen for me too much, because I peaked at a 5.0 level during my playing days, but I was invited to play in a Pro-Am as a Pro, presumably with 3.5 players and lower.   Either way, serious training has commenced today!  Got out for some hits with a 3.5 lady I know who is friendly, available and always ready for a hit.  

I told the promoter of the event, that I would be a standby in case he could not find someone else, but I have to get ready just in case.  Tomorrow the…


Added by Bill Patton on October 29, 2012 at 1:48pm — 2 Comments

The Total Serve

In a short while I am going to post two videos.  Radha aged 9, is going to attempt the first serve of her life. As a coach who really values teaching beginners, its great when you can start a kid properly.  When you inherit a player who was not taught well, or simply struggled for whatever reason with the serve, it takes a bit longer for them to learn the ideal pattern.  It's ok, its what we do.  Videos coming soon!

Added by Bill Patton on October 15, 2012 at 9:13am — No Comments

Off to SAP Open

Glad to have a chance to see Steve Johnson, and bring my Super Slow Motion Camera to see the pros up close and slow...  Its a great teaching tool.  Then to show clips to my students compared to what they do.   

Added by Bill Patton on February 14, 2012 at 9:31am — No Comments

Anatomy of a High School Tennis Section Champion Team (Part Two)

From defeating the second place team 5-2, when it easily could have been 4-3, we never again lost two matches to the 2nd place team.   That's a nice feeling.  We break our season down into four pieces.  1. Pre-Season Preparation. 2. First Half of League Season. 3. Second Half of League Season. 4. Post Season.   When you are planning all year for postseason, it's a lot less of a pressure feeling when you arrive.  It's a little tougher on teams that win league, but have not really thought "We…


Added by Bill Patton on November 18, 2011 at 9:29am — No Comments

Anatomy of a High School Tennis Section Champion Team (Part One)

I love high school tennis.  23 seasons of coaching high school tennis have been enough to this point, but if I can find a way to get back in, while still serving my club to the utmost, then I will. 

I think any high school coach can take something from this blog post. 

I had been coaching at Kennedy High School in Fremont, where we snapped the Boy's 37 match league losing streak, and the girl's 71 match league losing streak, and were featured on High School Sports Focus (a…


Added by Bill Patton on November 15, 2011 at 11:17am — 1 Comment

Weight Lifting

The weights don't lift themselves.  Now is a good time of year to get in the gym and do two things:

1. A six week toning regimen for very healthy muscles.  Tennis Specific?  Anywhere from 3 - 5 sets, of light weights and anywhere from 12-20 reps.    I like to start a weight at 3 sets of 12, then build up to the same weight at 4 sets of 15, then go up in weight.


2. Four week power lifting program.   After you get all toned, you can do the same excercises  2 or more sets…


Added by Bill Patton on November 14, 2011 at 2:32pm — No Comments

Ways to Win

What are the best ways to win a tennis match?  What do you need to achieve?  If you want a workout, thats one thing, but if you have multiple matches in a day, then conserving energy is very important especially for the junior player who may have two matches in a day, or the league player who drives from this match, to that one. 

1. Over Power your opponent.   If you can overpower your opponent, then do it!   Hit the big serve, get the short ball, stay in control of the point then hit…


Added by Bill Patton on November 11, 2011 at 9:53am — No Comments

Good Meetings with Good People.

It's great when we can meet to discuss our philosophies, mission statements, objectives, goals and find a common ground.   Then truly creative things happen and everyone gets energized.  


Added by Bill Patton on November 9, 2011 at 2:48pm — No Comments

Unified Direction

"It's amazing what you can accomplish, when no one is worried about who gets the credit"  Woodrow Wilson.  

Truly most of our best experiences come as part of a team.   When you do something alone in isolation, and want to share that with others, they many times find it hard to care.  However, when you and your teammate work together and could not have done it alone, each one covering the others weakness, then there a true excitement of WE did it. 

Every enterprise I take on,…


Added by Bill Patton on November 8, 2011 at 8:59am — 4 Comments

Rebuilding is a bad word? I hope not.

It's an interesting thing to rebuild something.  Like an engine of a car, there is a rebuilding process.  First you have to take everything apart, maybe insert some new parts, or simply clean an polish the parts that were still good.  Of course, during the time of the rebuild, the engine is not working, and you may have to use alternate modes of transportation for a while.   

If you use a sports team model of rebuilding, then you go through the process of having to develop chemistry…


Added by Bill Patton on November 6, 2011 at 7:31pm — No Comments

Senior Tennis

I am excited today to host my first ever senior tennis clinic.  Of course, I have had quite a few students who were advanced in years, but this is the first ever official program just for seniors.  These will be some 3.0/3.5 guys.   

Anecdote:  I had a 75 year old guy who only wanted to hit, and the rule was "I can hit it anywhere, but you Bill, must hit it to my Forehand.  And don't piss me off, or I am out of here".    That was a weekly 'lesson' for  years.   It turns out my…


Added by Bill Patton on October 31, 2011 at 8:01am — 1 Comment

Unexpected Phone Calls

I got a call from Alan "" Margot.   Truly a great friend that I do not see enough.   Alan was looking for a placement for a family who lives in my area, to save them a drive to where he teaches.   It was nice of him to think of me.   

One of the great things about Alan is that he hosts tennis trips to cool spots for 4.0-5.0 level players.   3 hour morning clinic workout, big lunch, 2 hours of killer doubles in the afternoon, great dinner, then some adult beverages at…


Added by Bill Patton on October 29, 2011 at 10:14am — No Comments

A brief history of me...part deux

I love Michael Jordan, "I succeed because I failed".  

I tried out for my high school tennis team as a senior in high school, I had begun playing again toward the end of my junior year.  I was ready, but...  I got the flu the week before tryouts and barfed for days, lost 10 pounds, and ONE challenge match.  Losing that match 6-4 meant I did not make the team.  Something better came... I ran track instead and made lifelong friends, and learned about become a true athlete.  By the…


Added by Bill Patton on October 27, 2011 at 11:35am — 4 Comments

A brief history of me...

Hi there, I guess its time to start blogging.   I just want you to know that I am someone who has and does struggle with self confidence, so its really amazing to me that during my struggles, and through working out my struggles that the following has happened.

1.  I started coaching Tennis a game I nearly quit out of frustration on at least 10 occasions.    In my early 20s I went through a 3 year period where I played maybe 6 times.

2. In my second go around as a Tennis Coach,…


Added by Bill Patton on October 26, 2011 at 1:03pm — No Comments

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