Our Policies When Working Together With High School Coaches, Academy Players and Parents
When a high school player uses an outside certified trainer (such as our academy), the roles of both team coach and trainer are different and we offer the following to try to better work together with high school coaches for the best interest of each player. Any overlap between these roles should be communicated between trainer and coach if issues arise. Here is a breakdown of roles/definitions we assume of each…
- Personal Trainer (Academy): A professional paid for by the family to develop the player in the sport of tennis. They generally work on a roadmap with each family and player to develop proper technique, then more specialized skills, to better compete in the sport. A private trainer manages a player’s personal development in the sport of tennis, based on their own personal or family goals.
- Team Coach (High School): A person hired by a school who manages players within a team environment, motivating and encouraging players, managing lineups, promoting sound work ethics, building their programs’ principles and much more. Team coaches are responsible for setting team rules, maintaining proper discipline and setting goals for their team’s in-season performance and expectations for players’ off-season commitment to their sport.
Crossover Issues Between Trainer & Coach: A high school coach training technique may be essential to a beginning player, to get them started in the sport. But in-season it should not be a primary focus for two reasons: 1) Competitive players in-season should be focusing less on technique and more on strategy and mental focus. 2) Having an outside trainer developing their skills with the addition of a coach using a different teaching methodology will ultimately break down progress and frustrate players and parents.
Collaboration: Staley Tennis Academy stresses the importance of working alongside the high school coaches of our academy players. Coach Staley’s coaching experience includes five years as head coach to a high school girls team and one year for boys, plus past assistant roles. He has seen the frustration from both a coach’s and trainer’s point of view as well as players’ and parents’ perspectives when personal trainers do not communicate with high school coaches (and vice versa).
10 Things We Want H. S. Team Coaches To Know When Sharing Players With Our Academy
- Please note that each one of our players has his or her own specific roadmap for development and each is in different phases.
- Team coaches who are quick to correct technique may very well be sending mixed messages to players and going against their training. Our teaching methodology uses progressions for building proper skills such as swing paths, among other things.
- Building fundamentally proper technique is a work in progress and ultimately happens over time. Tennis is a slow gratification sport; in other words, it takes time. Trying to correct technical matters in-season is often a setback for the players’ offseason development and detrimental to their in-season performance, as most of these changes take time for muscle memory to form through repetitions.
- Players involved in our academy are working for you and your team as well, not just at our academy. Our academy can be instrumental in boosting your success rate as a coach if collaboration happens between coaches and the academy/trainer.
- Team coaches should focus on team. Our trainers should focus on the individual player’s development which helps the team.
- Our trainer is a USPTA Professionally Certified tennis instructor. Our goal is to develop each player over time to the best of his or her ability in regards to the number of hours they are able to be on court training at our academy.
- If a player is instructed by a high school or team coach to do something differently than what they are taught at our academy, a quick phone call or text to discuss discrepancies usually will get trainer/coach better insight to collaborate and fix any issues or misconceptions that may arise.
- Our trainers will actively attend both USTA and high school events to watch and take notes on our players. Our attendance in any high school event is not meant to interfere with or supersede a team coach’s duties, only to monitor our players’ performance in competitive events.
- A school or team coach who actively works with our academy will benefit far greater than teams that don’t. From additional court time to proper instruction, there are many benefits to players that will lead to more success in high school tennis.
- It is our academy’s policy that players should take part in both USTA events through our academy and also embrace and participate in high school team sports to become a well-rounded player. We will never advise an academy player to avoid participation in high school team tennis unless there is evidence that involvement there is detrimental to development (very rare).
If you’re a high school coach and have players that are ready to commit to off-season workouts throughout our academy (or if you need to consult with us on your player(s) currently working here), please contact us.
We’re here for our players to succeed at all levels, including in high school tennis!