This remains our most popular download.
I had a huge number of requests for my presentation, “Starting with a bang: warm-ups for juniors” from the LTA North Conference in Leeds. I’ve prepared this planner to help you put warm-up theory into practice! You can use the “Starting With a Bang” planner to prepare and track your warm-up agenda each week.
For the drills and background to the warm-up agenda, see my post giving you the full session from the LTA North conference in Leeds.
Get the hand out here!
Ready to move
- Objective – to get players moving in varied ways with good precision and quality
- Principle – movement of whole body, not just feet, to include a ball to establish the ready, read and react
Movement drills for warm ups
- ‘Groundstroke volley drill (1 player)’ – in service boxes with one player as feeder and the other moving. Moving player plays alternate groundstrokes and volleys, with emphasis on moving forwards to a variety of volleys and moving back for a variety of deeper groundstrokes
- ‘Groundstroke volley drill (2 players)’ – as above with both players alternating groundstrokes and volleys
- ‘One leg rally (1 player)’ – goal is to focus on positioning of outside/back leg in the set up on groundstrokes. In service boxes with one player as feeder and the other moving. Moving player plays all groundstrokes off one leg to find good set up and maintain balance through the stroke
- ‘One leg rally (2 players)’ – as above with both players playing off one leg
- ‘Ker-plunk’ Aim is to judge positioning in relation to first bounce, and to have the second bounce on the racket placed on the ground. One point is earned every time the ball bounces on the strings
Ready to play
- Objective – to play every shot on time and on balance with precision, care and intensity
- Start to develop sharp movement, feel and timing for the ball
- Principle – set the minimum standards for the lesson and the players
Racket warm up drills
- ‘Quarters’ – use lines to split each service box into 4 quarters. Players rally cooperatively and cannot hit 2 consecutive balls to the same quarter. As variations, add an overarm serve to the drill, serving to any quarter, or use a cone to block out a chosen quarter to reduce the options for the opponent
- ‘Inside out’ – mark out a tramline down the middle of each service box. One player (the actor) can hit anywhere either inside or outside the marked tramline. The reactor must return by hitting to the opposite
- ‘Inside out with spin’ – as above but the actor chooses the spin and the direction, and the reactor hits opposite direction and opposite spin
- Two ball drill – players in service boxes rallying with 2 balls at the same time. To increase the challenge, try one yellow and one orange ball giving different speeds and bounces
Ready to learn
- Objective – to engage brain as well as body; to set personal and session goals around quality rather than just outcome; to know “what will I learn today?”
- Principle – switch on the brain; get into learning mode
Brain drills for warm ups
- ‘Hand grenade’ – throw and catch between 2 players, 1 as feeder and one as reactor. Use 3 balls, two yellow and one orange. The yellow ball bounces before the catch and the orange ball is the hand grenade and mustn’t bounce
- ‘Run around hand grenade’ – feeder throws up 2 balls at a time, with one yellow and one orange ball in one hand, and one yellow ball in the other hand. The yellow ball bounces and the orange ball is the hand grenade and mustn’t bounce
- ‘Racket Hand grenade’ – throw and catch between 2 players, 1 as feeder and one as reactor. Use 3 balls, two yellow and one orange. The yellow ball bounces and the player catches on the racket, and the orange ball is the hand grenade and mustn’t bounce