Monday, April 16, 2012

Strokes of Genius

Let us take a slight divergence from our discussion of 10 and Under Tennis and examine a popular video featuring world-famous tennis player Roger Federer. If you are new to tennis, or new to ME, let's clarify that Roger Federer is one of the top players in the world. Many consider him to be the GOAT (Greatest Of All Time).  I confess he is my favorite player. I discovered this video by clicking on a link sent to me automatically when I signed up to 'follow' RF on Twitter. Sure maybe it's self-serving and a marketing ploy, but you can't watch this video without marveling. Dude def has the skills. And that sentence just may be the UOAT (Understatement Of All Time).

Things I learned about RF and tennis by watching this string of highlights:
  • How a 45 ball rally that you ended up losing could still be your favorite point ever played
  • Why you need to be able to pair lightning speed with soft hands
  • Greatness has nothing to do with how hard you hit
  • Greatness has nothing to do with how fast you serve
  • Everyone makes the same face when RF's ridiculously amazing winner goes flying by
  • What Andy Roddick looks like playing without a hat
Now back to 10 and Under topics - I heard that during an interview, RF was stunned to discover that until recently, 10 and Under tennis (short courts, modified equipment, low compression balls) was not taught to juniors in the United States; that they were expected to use full size nets and courts and yellow balls regardless of their age or ability. I believe his response was, 'no wonder!' Apparently this 10U approach has been the norm in Europe and elsewhere for years. Check the online tennis discussion boards and you will frequently find people wondering why Americans are no longer dominating tennis. Many feel this is one of the reasons - 'they' (Europeans and others) have been using this method for years and it has really started to pay off.

But it's not too late! Let's get on board with this 10 and Under program and start seeing some results!