Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The Sophisticated Buyer - How to Make the Most of Your Tennis Lesson

Whether it's a group lesson or a private lesson, there are several ways to make the most of your bottom penny, especially those of us who work the extra hour for it. Coaching daily, I cannot believe how many players lose out on quality gems due to stuff that can be avoided.

I made a quick list of things to help you maximize your lesson time.

10. Be punctual. Business-minded people say if you are on time, you are late. Calling the club or coach to say you are running late does not change the fact that you are cutting into your lesson. Coaches simply say “take your time”, literally.

9. If you are going to the venue for the first time, look at the aerial map, then look up the directions. The GPS leads people through detours and dead-end roads more frequently despite the technological advancement! Allow 20 minutes of insurance travel time.

8. Come from home or work dressed and ready to play, and if you want to feel like those boys and girls on TV before stepping on the court, then allow for locker room time. Players put their shoes on upon arrival to the court all the time.

7. A tennis bag can get in the way if you have to dash for your lesson. Your racquets, a water bottle, and towel will suffice for a 90 minute tennis class, even if you own the new Sharapova tennis bag.

6. Take a water bottle to the court. Not all clubs provide on-court coolers. A good size bottle can save roughly 4 trips to the water fountain.

5. Always bring 2 racquets to the tennis court. If you know your strings are about to break, just get a new string job. You do not want to scrounge around for a demo if you pop a string.

4. You know yourself best. Give your pro the heads-up ahead of time on areas of your game you are struggling with. You coach can come up or research methods to improve your game out of class rather through than on-court trial and error. One of my students gave me a flash card with areas she wanted to work on for the next lesson. Impressive!

3. There is the temptation to socialize during a group class or with the pro. Unless your clock is almost ticked out, do not give in. That cutie will be there after class to exchange numbers.

2. Turn off your cellphone or silence it. The temptation and seduction of a smartphone is undeniable. Once you check it, consider yourself gone from the matter at hand. Men or women, multitasking is grossly overrated!

1. Unfortunately we cannot all get ball boys and girls. Help the pro pick up balls, and fast! If you are a parent, pick up balls while the child plays (do not get in the way). Parents with 2 or more kids, while one kid is taking their lesson, the other kid MUST pick up balls. I affectionately call those kids garbage men and ladies.

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