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The Fall Of American Tennis | Coach JP Weber


  1. Brett

    Very true ! It’s happening the same in the uk ! Gone are the days when the parents drop the kids off and allow you to do your job !

  2. G

    Well I’m very opinionated on this subject. I have two kids in top 50 in the southern division. My son was top 50 in the country in the B12 with out playing a lot of national tournaments. Both are home schooled. I will say player development in the USTA is a FARSE and SCAM! It does NOT EXIST. I dont care what anyone says. It’s a TOTAL SCAM. They dont do nearly enough. Zonals lol seriously, This is only for parents with a ton of money to waste just to increase thier national ranking. The coaching is non existant.

    The main issue with the USTA and the fall of Jr Tennis in the US is the USTA. It’s NOT designed to develop jr tennis. The ONLY thing they do that adds any kind of value is structure tournaments. And these are NOT CHEAP! That has it’s own issues aswell. Especially with the national rankings. The USTA has not adopted techniques used by other countries. In other countries young prospering Jr’s are helped by subsidized government entities (Tennis Federations) which help develop a jr. player from a young age. Here in the US it’s up the PARENTS to foster there Jr. Development. With out the PARENT you have no tennis. Your dam right the parent is going to have a lot to say on how they are developed. If you want to correct the PARENTS actions then the USTA needs to provide more information on how to help the parents help the juniors. They shouldn’t be competing with the parent! To think it’s a parents problem is just ignorance. I’m sure in many cases this holds some truth but the real issue here is in US Jr development for tennis not the parents but the USTA.

    Academies are important because they typically offer structure. With out structure you can not harness the potential of a developing player. There needs to be formal structure in place for strong development to occur. And Academies provide this. The caveat is thier very expensive. This is the closest thing we have to a federally funded federation. The federation of the parent pocket book determines his ranking and his skill level for the most part. Unrealized potential is the death of a strong Jr development program in the US. It’s unrealized because we never have an opportunity to develop into something more than just potential!

    Most people that know what thier talking about say you need about 4hrs of Tennis a day a good day of rest and lots of match play. You break up the day with drills , technique, agility / strength training / conditioning then match play at the end of the day when their tired. You do this 4 to 5 days a week and two tournaments a month. This is what I would consider the magic formula. NOW THE SECRETE SAUCE IS THIS. I just gave you a recipe that works however the MAGIC ingredient is your KID. It rest on his or her shoulder and if their is no PASSION or HUNGER their is no champion. The hard part is knowing when to call it quits.

    I also disagree with comments regarding using heavy top spin. This is NOT to be confused with “pushing” or “moon-balling” Using “High Heavy” at a young age under 14 is extremely useful and beneficial. One just needs to look at Nadal to see if heavy topspin is effective. It’s very effective for multiple reasons. One it helps to establish consistency. 2) It keeps you in the points longer. 3) it Helps with point structure. A high heavy shot to the backhand sets up a short ball to the middle of the court which then sets up an aggressive shot to come in on. 4) It allows a student to leverage a High Heavy shot when needing to reset a point instead of moon balling. 5) It effectively replaces the push / moonball with a more effective shot. 6) Helps establish confidence. 7) Win’s matches. Once the kids hit’s 14’s and ball’s are hit with much greater speed and power. A high heavy which they have been doing for so long now becomes the defense mechanism. It’s also much easier to flatten a ball if you know how to generate a lot of topspin 6) A high heavy ball creates control allowing you to stay in the point longer thus generating many unforced errors from your opponent. Having a kid hit the hell out of the ball is a stupid statement. It’s just plain wrong! wRong and WRONG! Tell me how many matches does your kid have to loose before they just quit the game from hitting the hell out of the ball. Do you think they will be around till 16 if they just go out and rip balls. You have to EARN the RIGHT to “hit the hell out of the balls”. And this comes from great foot work and position on court, comes from proper technique and being able to properly transfer weight. This comes from patience and waiting making sure your hitting in your strike zone. This takes hundreds and thousands of hours of practice before you can start to hit the hell out of balls with any kind of success. What you need to understand that this is an effective teaching aid that typically stops having focus especially around the B14’s.

    If the USTA wants to turn around Jr. Dev in the US they need to open up multiple facilities around the country in large cities that have a high concentration of jr tennis players. They need to setup affordable programs for all levels from begging to the home school. They need to give aid to those kids that truley have a passion and tallent to realize that unrealized potential. They need to lessen the cost of tournaments. DO NOT SEND KIDS OFF to USTA Training camps to train with other coaches. The last thing you want is to have some “USTA coach” change technique with out first consulting the coach or some video analysis as to why it’s being changed.

    Another reason why Jr Tennis sucks in the US is how USTA pro’s teach tennis. The whole approach of feeding ball’s is wrong! The only time you take a basket of balls out is when trying to teach fundamental technique or you dont have a 3rd person hitting balls on the other side. A “coach” should never be feeding ball’s. He should be watching on the sideline giving either tactical information on how they need to fix the technique or strategical information on how they need to structure the point. Thats it. If your coach is feeding you balls and you know the fundamentals it’s time to find a new coach. This is how tennis was taught in the 80’s.

    Their is a reason why most colleges in America have a 70-90 percent roster of foreign players. The reason is simple the USTA is failing MISERABLY! FIX IT NOW. The fix is simple MONEY which the USTA has PLENTY of. Build facilities focused on Jr development in more parts of the countries where it’s needed. ATL, FL, So Cal, No Cal, Tx, NE. Make it affordable. And help the coaches help the parents help the kids.

  3. Frank Conforti

    USA college coaches have a lot to blame. Go see how many foreign players that played Usta ITA have played in USA schools. A lot more then you think. Let’s face it, the many reason why college coaches obtain foreign players is that they them self , CAN’T coaches so they fine players that might hide their insufficiencies.

  4. America’s reliance on academies is one of the causes of tennis falling. Academies ensure potential players can get enough on-court experience, but tennis professionals are starting to realize it is not a good practice that the tennis association remove students from family.

  5. coachjpweber

    I do not care if you say it came from me at all. I could care less. I just do not want it to look like Coach Lansdorp is just negative and mean. I think he is probably tough and demanding but I do not think he is mean. That is all. You do not have to give credit to Coachjpweber at all. It is good just to get this great man’s thoughts down while we still can. I think when you left it just with his part it made him look kinda bad. My thoughts sorry for any misunderstanding.

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