Whilst hosting a live discussion on Life Lessons Through Tennis we polled parents to discover that dealing with winning & losing is the top life lesson they find players learn when playing, practising and competing in tennis.
In this follow-on live session with Adam Wharf, i2c’s Head of Performance, we dig deeper – much deeper – into competition in tennis. Then we move on to dealing with the outcome of competition; winning and losing.
- Why do we actually play competitions in tennis?
- How to choose tournaments to play
- Making sure you have open communication with the child about competing (where and when)
- What roles do parents, player and coach play in competitions?
Adam’s Key Points About Dealing With Winning & Losing
Start by asking why do we play tennis
Sometimes this discussion isn’t had with parents early enough in their kid’s programme. With some sports – particularly team sports such as hockey or football for example – it’s pretty clear that there’ll be competition. With tennis, because it’s a solo sport it’s maybe not so clear and parents don’t know what tournaments to enter.
Hopefully tennis is being played because children want to play and they’re getting even more from the sport when they compete. For sure, that’s open for debate.
How do you choose good tournaments to play?
The best advice Adam ever got on choosing tournaments was from a swimming coach. His idea was to group your tournaments:
- Enter 2 tournaments where you were the favourite – gives a good opportunity to practise the skills you’ve learned. This is the time you’re going to work really hard on the skills you’ve developed.
- Register for 2 tournaments where you’re right in the middle of the mix – not at the bottom of the draw, but not the favourite either.
- 2 tournaments where you’re the absolute underdog – where it’ll be really difficult and you’ll have to battle as hard as you can.
You can also try to balance out your wins and losses; a bit of winning and a bit of losing. That can be hard to do but it’s really important.
Don’t overlook the value of playing local
We always recommend playing at your local club and we recommend competing. Friendly competition is also a great way to compete too.
Hosted by Adam Wharf, Richard Marklow and Mark Tennant
Adam is the Head of Performance at inspire2coach. He has an impressive coaching career spanning more than 15 years, including work with Nick Bollettieri and the LTA.
Richard Marklow and Mark Tennant are the Director’s of inspire2coach; one of the UK’s largest tennis organisations.
More Information About Tournaments for Tennis Parents