Philosophy (for Elite Tennis)
There are a number of principles that our training methods and tennis development pathway draw heavily on. It is important that any parent who sends their child to our school understands clearly, and is in alignment with, these principles.
Principle of Strong Foundations|
There are no short cuts on the road to elite tennis. The most important work in elite player development is often unseen, "beneath-ground", right at the beginning of the journey: i.e. the laying down of technical, mental and physical foundations. They could take 2-3 years to take root before the results start becoming outwardly visible. The deeper the roots, the higher the potential and this is something we take our time with, requiring patience from both the children (eager to compete and win in the short-term) and parents (eager to see tangible progress quickly).
Just as we do with our players, the school itself has chosen to take the long and arduous route of patiently laying down rock solid roots. Even before we became a school we created a world-class (and proven to be prolific) system of producing national and international junior champions from scratch. Our results speak for themselves, and we are certain that our track record of developing "home-grown" talent would compare extremely favourably with any other training environment anywhere - including those that promote themselves to be the best in the world.
Principle of Stability|
We very strongly believe in continuity and stability. Instead of seeking out players who are already accomplished (developed by others), our preference is to work with players from their technical beginnings and see them through the whole of their tennis journey.
We ask that parents allow us, as coaches, to be fully invested in their child knowing they can then expect to get the very best out of us. If they take their child from training centre to training centre then no coach can truly be invested in them, nor take responsibility for outcomes.
If we can have the trust of parents and know that they will hold their nerve during the inevitable difficult moments, then we will be able to work to a mutually agreed long-term trajectory without an imperative for short-term results. Conversely, we are with you for the long haul, the progress of your child will become our personal responsibility and we do not not select and discard players on the back of results.
Before applying for a place please research us, research our history - and do the same for alternative academies / training options. Please apply to us only if you believe we are the best choice for your child.
Principle of Diminishing Peers|
To put this in extremely simplistic (but not too inaccurate) terms, let us consider one year group:
At age 7 there may be 50 children in every neighbourhood who could go on and play county level tennis;
By age 9 there may be 50 children in every county who could go on to compete at regional level;
By age 11 there may be 50 children in every region who could go on to compete as a national level junior;
By age 13 there may be 50 children in the entire country with a realistic chance of competing internationally;
By age 15 there may be 50 children in the whole world with a chance of making it as a top 5 world ranked JUNIOR (18&U) tennis player;
By age 17 there may be 5 children in the whole world with a chance of making it as a top 50 ATP or WTA ranked player.
Why is this important? Because many parents of elite performers panic when they suddenly find their children without "similar-level or better" peers in their training environment. The reality is that genuine elite is always found out in front of the pack, with very little company. If you seek out the pack you will not find the elite, especially from age 13 onwards.
At Tennis Avenue School we have a team with vast international experience ready to step in at the right time and support elite players with bespoke, personalised programs designed for the next part of their journey. It is a change of gear, perhaps even a change of direction, but not a change of vehicle or driver (which would go against the Principle of Stability)