TENNISBYMIND - The footwork issue.
One of the questions that recur again and again by tennis coaches is, what about footwork? How come there is no reference to mobility issues within the methodology?
The answer is long. I'll be brief about it and try to relate only to the main principles without dealing with details as they appear at "Biomechanics of Baseline Strikes in Tennis".
In order to illustrate it - let's say a boy who reached the age 7-8 and decides to adopt tennis as a fun game. Playing about 3-4 times a week, one hour at a time, for eight months a year-by the time he is 12-13 of age, he will hit between 300000-600000 strikes during that period. Examination of the experience gained in this process of the trial and error (or "memory movement as it is known in tennis), brings him to a stage that can not be simulated in adults who begin to play later on in their lives. All those principles trained with young people are based on encouraging them to perform better, accompanied by a constant demand to speed up the footwork. It simply does not work with adults. Many instructors tend to give up (and rightly so) this requirements. It is usually being substituted by a general approach, which is a mixture of easy returnable strikes that do not impose intense movement. Breaks in order to give repeated explanations about how to perform certain strokes, combined with compliments that help to create good feeling with the trainee. Those measures create for the trainee a high sense of progress, exceeding by far its actual true value. In real life, trainees find out to often that there is a huge gap between their own ability perception and the actual performance which is needed in response to different type of strokes in play, even strokes with low intensity.
TENNISBYMIND is trying to solve precisely this problem. I'm not claiming that ongoing practice could be spared, just an attempt to offer better linkage with the principles of the game through the mind. Emphasis on the practice of consciousness with no discounts, plus the ability to analyze failures during impact by the trainee,
leads to better outcomes in this stage.
Eventually footwork results from this exercise.
In the future I will try to explain how each component contributes to each particular part of the method.