Halton Tennis Centre (Halton UK) and Everyball Tennis launch 'proV3'

We are delighted at Halton to launch a new charitable initiative called proV3.  

The objective behind proV3 is to support the careers of aspiring but vulnerable* professional players currently ranked outside the WTA/ATP top 250.

Such vulnerabilities include:

  • high rates of burn-out, drop-out & injury
  • high stress/anxiety due to lack of resources (principally financial) as well as access to first class facilities, coaching and sparring partners
  • low to nil income due to small prize money purses at lower tier events
  • potentially ill-equipped and/or unprepared for life after tennis

Our strategy to achieve this objective comes through the pursuit of our HaltonUK definition of winning - to 'identify, gather and mobilise all our resources to go as far as we can'.  In this our behaviours will be driven by 3 key values (the V3 bit!): 

Excellence - the quality of being outstanding in all we do

Community - shared learning, experience and support.  A sense of 'belonging'

Team-ship - actively willing each other on, celebrating success, working together with other coaches & organisations [The image of a lone piece of charcoal struggling to stay alight versus a glowing bed where each piece heats and is heated]

Our tactics involve (and not limited to this list):

  • Provision of free court time, coaching, strength and conditioning, planning and competition scheduling
  • Redistribution of financial investment 
  • Periodic coach support on the road
  • Professional support and further personal development opportunities that experts in their field 'give' to proV3 players
  • Accommodation options
  • Training weeks to access

Current proV3 players

22 year old Beth Grey has been training under the HaltonUK/Everyball Tennis banner for the last 15 months and is our HaltonUK and now proV3 player ambassador.  She is currently ranked WTA 613 (rise of over 300 places during her time with us) in singles and 289 in doubles having just won two 25K events with her regular doubles partner Olivia Nicholls (Loughborough Tennis).  Beth plays in the main draw second round in Obidos, Portugal 25K event today after beating fellow Brit Freya Christie (524) yesterday.  (Beth and Olivia pictured below)

Toby Martin has been using Halton as his training base through the winter and spring whilst recovering from injury and he looks forward to progressing back up the ATP rankings over the remainder of 2018.

Gosling Tennis' Katy Dunne coached by Richard Hawkes (WTA 242) who grew up as a junior at Halton between ages 12-18) also continues to use facilities and sparring partners from time to time at Halton.

For further information on proV3 and to get involved in the project either as a player or in a support capacity, please contact Mike James, mikejames@everyball.net

Everyball Tennis P.R.I.D.E Programme winners recognised

At Everyball, we believe in P.R.I.D.E - Personal Responsibility In Developing Excellence

During our first training session back yesterday following the easter break, we recognised winners of our P.R.I.D.E programme which challenged players to go out a do a series of activities 'off their own back and outside of the recognised/scheduled training environment' over a period of 6 weeks.

Finn Lester, DJ Mentiply, Millie Day, Amelie Brooks (pictured right to left) and Natalie Bell (not pictured) racked up some serious hours and in doing so no doubt further developed their games, fitness, confidence, and sense of responsibility in that they are the captains of their own ships!!

A super busy Easter period for Everyballers with many highlights - here are a few....

Alexandra Hildreth - winner of girls 18&U Rickmansworth Grade 3 (pictured below)

Miles Groom - winner of boys 14&U Doubles Nottingham Grade 2

Jasmine Conway - winner of girls 14&U Doubles Nottingham Grade 2.  Jasmine also reached the semis of the girls 14s singles and quarters of girls 16s singles

Ethan Taank - winner Stony Stratford 12&U Grade 4 singles

Ashton Taank - winner 9&U Grade 3 events at Paddington and Bishops Park

Michael Broner - winner 16s G4 Stony Stratford, runner-up 16s G3 Finchley Manor

Joshua Oakley - runner up 12&U boys doubles Sutton Grade 2, semis boys 12&U Nottingham G2, 

Millie Day - runner-up Leverstock Green G4 16&U girls

Tegan Stockdate - runner up 9&U girls singles Stony Stratford Grade 4

Ben Spencer-Jones - runner up 14&U singles Stony Stratford G4

Jospeh M-Brown – ¼ finals Rickmansworth G3 beating seed 4 along the way

DJ Mentiply - semi finals Boys 14&U singles Rickmansworth G3

Oliver MCcay-Brown - semi finals Mens Singles Berkhamsted G4

Can tennis become more promiscuous??

Great article in The Times yesterday by Matthew Syed on why English football's reluctance to embrace 'idea sex' is stopping the game from evolving.

A few excerpts:

'And this brings me to English football, where there is precious little sex - at least when it comes to ideas.  The game is insufficiently promiscuous.  The walls between football and the rest of the world, far from being porous, are often high and unbroachable....

This prudishness can be seen in other ways too.  The same old managers, with the same ideas circulate from club to club.  Conferences are too often led by the usual suspects.  Virtually no women operate in coaching roles anywhere in the Premier League.  With each passing World Cup, there is a rush to copy the latest success story with scant recognition that innovation is not about mimicking the status quo but transcending it.  Many coaches teach in the way they they themselves were taught, as if the world could be changed by standing still.

The power of cross-pollination of ideas can even be seen with many technical innovations pioneered by elite athletes....Novak Djokovic learnt his famous 'slide' footwork by leveraging insights from his love of skiing, Indian cricketers improved the reverse sweep by integrating techniques from tennis.  Other innovations, from Dick Fosbury's flop to Jan-Ove Waldner's hidden serve, follow this pattern.  They reveal the power of 'idea sex.''

What can tennis learn from this? Are we (coaches & players) constantly learning from other sports and sharing our own ideas, constantly innovating, trying new things, failing fast and trying again?  Can we be, dare I say it, more promiscuous?

Everyballers in action today at the Sutton Grade 2

Supported by coaches Ed Taylor and Seb Callcut, 8 Everyball players take to the courts today at the Sutton Easter Grade 2 competition.

Miles Groom, Sophia Mezzone, Amelie Brooks (withdrawn as in final of TE in Portugal!), Millie Day, Jasmine Conway, Emily Ineson, Dean Dean, Alexandra Hildreth.

All the best and fight for everyball!!

No ball bounces twice in front of you.  No ball goes past you.

Everyball is played with courageous purpose!

Coaching versus teaching

The attraction of telling or dictating (traditional 'teach' model), besides being quick and easy, it provides the dictator with the feeling of being in control, says John Whitmore in 'Coaching for `Performance'.

There is yet another problem with the dictating end of the traditional management (coaching) spectrum: the problem of recall.  Quite simply we do not remember very well something we are told.

Coaching is more about engaging the learner in his/her learning, in bringing out the 'oak tree-ness' in the acorn rather than our athletes simply being empty vessels into which we pour our knowledge and information.