The 'Everyball' 80 ball drill

See here the 'Everyball' 80 ball drill with Mike and Miles.

Player initiates each set of 8 balls with a serve.  Coach then feeds a 'neutral' (no spin, slow-medium speed) ball side to side into outside third of player's court.  Player has to play cross-court into outside third with a rising ball over baseline or deep side-line.  Player aims to recover in 20 seconds ready for next set.

10 sets of  8 balls. 

Miles scores 51/80 or 63% rising balls, 30 on FH, 21 on BH.  Serving percentage 40%, average time between points 26.44 seconds.   A great drill for establishing a baseline competency/current position and setting some improvement goals for the future. 

Video shows set 5 of 10 for Miles.  8/8 rising balls, great job!

Key factors for the coach:

  1. Neutral ball feed encourages player to generate own pace with full body mechanics, work hard with feet behind ball and find appropriate trajectory (speed, spin, height) to achieve aim of rising ball over baseline/deep side-line
  2. Timing of feed to replicate that of opponent's contact point
  3. Tough to gain all information above so either video and chart later or have a buddy to help 
  4.  Drill can be easily adapted to squad situation - hit 8, pick up 8 and ready to go again.  Total rising balls achieved by a squad in 5 minutes (roughly 300 balls fed).  Our Academy record this week was 190, achieved by 12 players over 3 courts.

Well that's not true/possible/do-able.....

What's your criteria for establishing the truth?  Laboratory proof, empirical evidence?  Because it just 'makes sense'?

Are we closed to everything we can't explain?  Rejecting all inexplicable elements of 'things' because we've made up our minds that such things aren't possible, we run the risk of shrinking the world and the possibilities around us to only what we can comprehend. (Rob Bell)

I think that's a sad place to be, fundamentally because it takes away our imagination, our creativity, our ability to dream.

Two choices - tear each other apart or build each other up

It's what it really boils down to isn't it?  We can either tear each other apart or build each other up.  On a personal level but also on a wider cultural one.

As tennis clubs/centres/coaches/parents/players/volunteers, our ultimate success depends on the overall health of our industry

The stronger the industry, the more jobs, the more resources, the more knowledge gained and shared, the greater the improvement both on and off the court.

A culture of back-biting, where players hope their mates/rivals lose, where coaches talk down other programmes or colleagues, where parents are less than complimentary towards each other.....we've all been there at some point, all played a part in this....  

Don't get me wrong - healthy and respectful competition is good, it drives up standards, but competitive collaboration, recognising the strengths in each other, the great contributions made at all levels of the sport, the victories no matter how great or small - well, that kind of culture is just better for all of us. 

It's quite hard though, goes against the grain and our human instinct.

Requires some real intentional behaviour and change in attitude.