Choosing the Right Tennis Instructor

Finding a good Tennis instructor or coach can be difficult. Often times, they are former college or high school players who might look good hitting a ball, but in actuality, have little to no experience teaching how to hit that ball. Part of attaining certification from the Pro Tennis Registry (PTR) or US Pro Tennis Association (USPTA) includes taking courses in the basic principles of teaching progressions and coaching tennis in addition to standard education courses.  All of our Columbus tennis coaches and instructors are trained, certified, and experienced in teaching you the best of the game.

Here are some helpful things to keep in mind, and seek answers for, when screening potential instructors.

I’m going to need to see some credentials . . .

On national certification—ask about their NTRP rating, and to which level. Bottom-line is that no teacher can teach beyond their own capabilities. If your coach is rated at a NTRP of 4.0, but you want to get to a 5.0, then you’ll want to find an instructor with a higher rating.

Have they ever received a high rank in the United States Tennis Association (USTA)? Tennis Instructors who’ve never been ranked, or never even competed for a USTA ranking for that matter, won’t have the same tournament experience to offer. Always ask about their ranking status; the higher, the better.

How many years have they been teaching professionally? What ages, skill levels, and locales have they taught? With a variety from year-round or part time, indoor centers or outdoor clubs, to summer camps, recreation centers, or tennis clubs, the type of experience gained can vary greatly. Knowing whether it has been an actual career for them, or more of a hobby, will let you know the quality of teacher you are likely getting. Depending on if you are looking for yourself or your child will weigh on your decision too, as different ages and levels require separate techniques when it comes to Columbus tennis instruction.

When drilling the new guy or gal, take the opportunity to get a feel for their personality. Assess how they are reacting and responding to your questions. If you don’t think you can get along with the person, chances are, your lessons will be no fun. A personable and reliable professional who is also upbeat and full of encouragement translates to a good time on the court.

Now, I’m going to need to see some results . . .

There’s no substitute for experience. Not to beat a dead horse, but as mentioned above, tennis teaching experience can be gained across many settings. Experience gained at a summer kids’ camp is inferior to that gained at a year-round club. If your potential Columbus Tennis Instructor has spent the bulk of their time with children, then they’ll be hard-pressed to provide proper tennis instruction to an adult. Also, the skills required to teach to a single person are different and more demanding than the skills needed when teaching a group. These are considerations which will impact the quality of your tennis lessons.

A great Tennis Instructor gains knowledge from the great effort they’ve made to educate themselves. Ideally, they’ve read numerous quality tennis instruction books, viewed instructional videos, and attended many courses and workshops on proper stroke technique. There are no short-cuts in this business.

If your coach is worth the good money you’re paying them, then you should expect to start seeing results from your first lesson. Additionally, with each consecutive lesson you should see continued improvement. If this isn’t the case, then you need to insist that your coach work with you while on-court, not at the ‘next lesson.’

Here at Elysium Tennis, we’ve got a variety of instructors waiting to be paired up with you.

Your next win is just a few lessons away!