Tennisopolis : Tennis Social Network

“Hey D, How Many Tennis Lessons do I need Till I am Good”?

It is hard to discuss money in most contexts without sounding vulgar. But as soon as a coach hears the question titling this blog the translation is usually, “what is the least amount of money I can spend and get to enjoy the rallies” so the pressure is on. In all honesty, who isn’t concerned about getting quality for their “dough-re-miii”? Assuming you already have good coach, I am going to break down some factors directly affecting your rate of improvement and also advice on the most effective approach to your lessons with your coach. 

The general and rather boring response to everyone is “it varies”. I continue to give the client a guestimation based on a few points.

  • Good athleticism and coordination tend to be rewarded in most sports. If this is amongst your stronger suites, chances are you will catch on quicker
  • Consistency in lesson taking is key. The more you practice the higher your rate of improvement particularly in the first few weeks where all players enjoy exponential growth in improvement rate.
  •  Your innate level of talent or ability to replicate what the coach is delivering. The more talent you have the less time it takes to catch on, fortunately for those of us  who are not naturals, hard work does make up for a talent shortage.
  • Tennis is somewhat similar to your math class and depending on who you ask, more engaging. Regularity is as important as consistency. One of my coaches in junior tennis used to say for every 1 hour private lesson you take, put in 2 hours of practice; “if you do not use it you lose it”.
  •  Lastly but not least genuine, invested interest makes any task easier learnt. I have heard all sorts of entertaining reasons that tell me that the client’s interest will be short lived; “their tennis outfits look so cute on tv”, “the women have nice legs”, and “I got a group-on”. Some of my long serving members gave me the following reasons, “I need a good work out and running is not engaging enough”, “I played when I was younger and I miss the game”, “I enjoy the competition” among others.

It is important to be strategic about scheduling your lessons. Instead of arbitrarily showing up for a lesson when you can swing the lesson fees for that particular hour, save for 5-10 lessons (most bulk buying comes with discounts anyways), and space them over the corresponding number of weeks. In between lessons, ask your coach for connections of similar level of ability so you can re-enforce once or twice a week.  For those who live in parts of the world where the weather is not always conducive, learning the game during the outdoor season is a little more accommodating on your pocket.

A good coach is as important as the time and money invested, take time, research your coach.

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Tags: Coaching, Tennis

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Comment by Sandra on March 17, 2012 at 4:51pm

Well said.  Just make sure you get a coach that wants you to get better and not one that just wants to collect the pay check.  What you put into it is the key to getting better.  I think if you balance the private lessons with a clinic you get the best bang for your buck, especially if your coach is running the clinic.  You get to practice what you are learning in your private and your coach is there to evaluate how well you are translating the lesson into practice.  Also your coach can see what he/she needs to work on in your next private.  Saves alot of money.

Comment by TennisWithD on March 16, 2012 at 6:35pm

Thanks Tim! Do you know anyone there? Seriously!

Comment by Tim Prapong on March 16, 2012 at 6:16pm

Hey, that is so well written! Why isn't it on tennis.com or something like that? lol

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