NTRP National Tennis Rating Program

Purpose of the project:

1.        Define the level of performance through self evaluation

2.        Define the hours per-week and days available

3.        Define the off-court hours per week conditioning

4.        Define the drills and exercises with time frames per week

5.        Define the number of matches per week

6.        Define the testing requirements for measurement


The goal we have is to give the player the ability to develop through a systematic method. The method covers all areas of development from conditioning to match play.

The tracking of skills to individual exercises to have a formula for success is the scope of this project.  Provide the player a system for themselves to customize their

individual goals and performance level to their schedule.




Project objectives:


Ensure that the system is well integrated to current standards in tennis ie: NTRP the USTA rating program for measurement of level.

Deliver a method of application “packaged” for development with full documentation, and procedures for success.



Personal objectives :


1.        Reduce the amount of entry time for a specific task or skill

2.        Allow better decisions to be made on individual development made in a more accurate fashion

3.        Increase the efficiency or reliability of a individuals progress



Benefits to be derived:


1.        The stages of development can be tested faster

2.        Information can be used to enhanse efficiency and quality

3.        Automation of the process will allow higher volume of activity based on individual workload.


Criteria for success

1.        Total cycle time reduction

2.       Delivery of functionality as defined by the customer

2.        Integration with other applications /sports goals




The process of self evaluation:


This is the process by which we can determine your level of play based on the NTRP rating system developed by the USTA.  The guidelines or general characteristics of various playing levels.  The system is a number system ranging from 1.0 to 7.0 with the highest being professional.  For the purpose of our system of development we will divide the group into 3 categories:  1.0-3.0 first group 3.0-4.5 second group 4.5-7.0 the third group of players.


RATING  FOREHAND  BACKHAND          SERVE                               VOLLEY                SPECIAL SHOTS      OTHER

 1.0 No concept of waist

Level stroke. Most

Often swings from

Elbow at eye-level

Most likely avoids

Backhands or misses


No knowledge of service motion or procedure.  Makes little contact with the ball at net or doesn”t go to net at all. Little knowledge of score keeping and basic positioning
1.5 Late preparation No follow through.  Erratic contact; No direction Avoids backhands when possible. No change of grip. Inconsistent toss and motion.  Infrequent contact on center of strings; No follow through ; No backscratch or full swing ; frequent double faults.  Only forehand volley ; infrequent success. Little knowledge of procedures; difficulty with scorekeeping.
2.0 No directional intent. Infrequently in position can keep a rally of up to 3 hits when set up . Grip problems; no follow through; erratic contact; no direction ; faces the net. Starting a full motion; can be consistent on the second serve; no directional iintent; frequently no back-scratch Can angle forehand volley when set up does not bend for low volleys usually drops racket head.  Still uncomfortable at the net, especially on the backhand side. Grip problems. Can keep play moving in singles and doubles.
2.5 Form developing well prepared for moderate shots. Follows through on most shots fairly consistent on set-ups. Still has grip and preparation problems.  Lack of confidence.  No follow through; can compensate frequently for a ball coming to the backhand side Starting a full motion can be consistent on the second serve; no directional intent; frequently no back-scratch Can angle forehand volley when set-up does not bend for low volleys usually drops racket head.  Still uncomfortable at the net especially on  the  backhand side . grip problems Can lob intentionally. Weak court coverage cannot return lobs; can retun serve on forehand consistently; cannot adjust to variance in serves usually remains in the initial doubles position.
3.0 Fairly consistent with some diirectinal intent; lacks depth control. Little directional intent frequently prepared usually lacks follow through can be consistent on set-ups Developing rhythm; little consistency when trying for power. Consistent forehand volley frequently uses forehand racket face on backhand volleys can be offensive on set-ups inconsistent backhand volley when using backhand racket face; has trouble with low and wide balls Can occasionally handle balls hit at the feet but not with a good half volley form.  Can make contact on overheads; can lob consistently. Can frequently cover lobs in doubles; recognizes offensive doubles play, but weak in its execution . can return serve on the backhand , but with little directional intent . developing match play sense.
13.5 Good consistency on set-ups. Lacks depth on difficult shots; has directional intent on moderate balls; may have good preparation, but still weak on deep shots. Preparation problems starting to hit with directional intent on easy shots;’ starting to follow through instead of punch. Starting to serve with some power and control tries to direct serves usually flat serves may be trying to learn to use spin. More aggressive net play. Some ability to cover side shots. Using proper footwork. Can direct forehand volleys; consistent contact, but little offense on backhand volleys. Can use full overhead swing on shots within reach.  Recognizes approach shots and half volleys; can place the return of serve Moves up and back well covering court fairly well.  With doubles partner, can effectively cover the net.
4.0 Dependable most of the time with consistent depth and control; can control running forehand starting to develop top-spin frequently may try top hit too good a shot off the forehand. Player can direct the ball with consistency on each shot; returns difficult shots defensively; little control on running backhands.  Still lacks depth. Places both first and second serves; frequent power on first serve with some control ; starting to use spin; tends to over-hit first serve. Depth and control on forehand volley.  Can direct backhand volleys, but usually lacks depth; developing wide and low volleys on both sides of the body. Can direct easy overheads; can poach in doubles; can hit both offensive and defensive lobs; follows aggressive shots to the net; hits to opponents’ weaknesses. Has moore confidence but rallies are still commonly lost due to impatience.  Not yet playing good percentage tennis; has developed teamwork in doubles.
4.5 Very dependable; uses speed and spin effectively tends to overhit on difficult shots; offensive on easy shots. Can hit with depth usually not offensive; can control direction and depth, but not under pressure. Aggressive serving with limited doubles faults; uses power and spin, still developing spin and offense on second serve; frequently hits with good depth. Can handle a mixed sequence of volleys; good footwork; has depth and directional control on backhand ; developing touch; most common error is still overhitting. Approach shots with good depth and control; can consistently hit overheads as far back as the service line; starting to hit drop volleys; can change pace on groundstrokes. More intentional variety in game; covers up weaknesses well; plans tactics more than on shot ahead.

Rating  Forehand           Backhand                    Serve                               Volley                        special Shots             Other




1.        Do any of the characteristics in mechanics coralate with the skills in your game?

2.        Give each area a careful look to see the possible rating of skills from 1-7 NTRP.

3.        The majority of players will fall within the range of skills described here.

4.        The following characteristics describe only 7% of the population.










Rating  Forehand                 Backhand                 Serve                          Volley                        Special Shots            Other

5.0 Strong shot with control, depth and spin; uses forehand to set up offensive situations; has developed good touch; consistent on passing shots. Can use backhand as a aggressive shot with good consistency; has good direction and depth on most shots. Difficult shots are returned without intent of direction or depth, but can frequently hit winners off of set-ups Serve is paced effectively with the intent of hitting to a weakness or of developing an offensive situation; can mix topspin, slice, and flat serves; good depth and spin on most second serves, and few double faults. Can hit most volleys with depth, pace and direction; can hit either flat or underspin volleys.  Plays difficult volleys with depth; given opportunity, volley is hit automatically for a winner. Has added drop shot and lob volley to repertoire; approach shots and passing shots are hit with a high degree of effectiveness. The 5.0 player frequently has an outstanding shot around which he can mold his game or protect weaknesses.  Has sound strategy in singles and doubles and can vary game plan according to opponent.  This players has become “match wise” and “beats himself”  less than the 4.5 players.  Covers court well, players percentage tennis and has good anticipation.  Hits mid-court volley with consistency. But may lack depth. Serve return is consistent, and can gain offense against a weak second serve.  Overhead can be hit from most any position on the court.
5.5 This player can hit dependable shots in stress situations; has developed good anticipation, and can pick up cues from such things as opponent’s toss, body position, backswing, preparation, ect.  First and second serves can be depended on in stress situations and can be hit offensively at any time. Can analyze and exploit opponents’ weakness
6.0 These players will generally not need NTRP ratings, as their rankings or past rankings speak for themselves.  The 6.0 players frequently has a teaching knowledge of the game and often travels from city to city for competition.
6.5 to 7.0  The 6.5 player frequently makes travel –for-competition a part of his life-style, and sometimes earns a portion of his income from prize winnings.  The 7.0 player is generally committed to tournament competition as a life-style and frequently depends on  tournament winnings as a portion of his income.


1.        The classification of levels based on the NTRP was developed by the USTA and

Is Pro verification guidelines.


2.   The general characteristic of skills of various playing levels helps understand

players competencies.
















Player Evaluation:


Player Name:____________________________


Rating Scale: 1.0 to 7.0 NTRP


(Please give yourself a number from 1.0 to 7.0 in all categories of skills)


1.        Mental Game:


______Maintenance of positive attitude

______Strategic awareness


2.        Physical (skills related to fitness)






3.        Stroke mechanics


______One motion



______Use of spin

______Direction with spin


4.        Volley

______Technique(stepping with the correct foot)

______Contact in front of body

______Racquet head above wrist

______Placement and control


5.        Overhead




______Watching the contact point









Analysis of skills continued:


6.        Forehand

______Racquet preparation

______Follow through



______Ball is hit at waist level

______Watches contact point

______Control of direction

______Attempts to hit with depth

______Uses spin



7.        Backhand

______Racquet preparation

______Follow through



______Ball is hit at waist level

______Watches contact point

______Control of direction

______Attempts to hit with depth

______Uses spin



Comments: (add your score in all categories and divide by 38 to get your NTRP rating)






Date of Rating:_________


Rating After All Categories Divided by 38:__________











The role of fitness:

1.        Aerobic Endurance

2.        Anerobic Capacity & Power

3.        Muscular Strength & Endurance

4.        Response Time & Speed

5.        Agility

6.        Dynamic Balance

7.        Neoromuscolar  Coordination

8.        Flexibility


The tests given to evaluate your individual fitness level:

1.        1.5-mile run —time____________

2.        20 yard dash—time____________

3.        Hexagon test—time____________

4.        Side Shuffle—time_____________

5.        Spider test—–time_____________

6.        Vertical jump-inches___________

7.        Grip Strength—_______________

8.        Push-ups———_______________

9.        Sit-ups———–_______________

10.     Sit and Reach—_______________

Heart rate /training sequence

To find your resting heart rate; before getting up in the morning take your pulse for 6 seconds, starting at 0.  multiply your pulse rate by 10.  This is your resting heart rate.  The chart is based on a resting heart rate of 80 beats per min.  if your resting heart rate is 90, you must adjust the number on the chart up by 10.  likewise, if your resting heart rate is 70, you must adjust the number down by 10.


To find your personal training heart rate:

220 –(minus) your age = (equals) maximum heart rate – (minus) your testing heart rate x (multiply) by .7 to determine 70% of your maximum heart rate + (add) your resting heart rate = (equals) your training heart rate.


AGE      MAXIMUM        80%                              85%                    75%

Heart rate             of max                           of max                 of max

Recommended       athletic train               heart

14           206                      165                              175                         154

16           204                      163                              173                         153

18           202                      161                              171                         151

20           200                      160                              170                         150

22           198                      158                              168                         148

24           196                      157                              167                         147

26           194                      155                              165                         145

28           192                      154                              163                         144

30           190                      152                              162                         143

32           188                      150                              159                         141

34           186                      149                              158                         140

36           184                      147                              156                         138

38           182                      145                              154                         136

40           180                      144                              153                         135

45           175                      140                              148                         131

50           170                      136                              144                         129

55           165                      132                              140                         123

60           160                      128                              136                         120

65           150                      120                              127                         112


Fitness procedures to test yourself:


Sit and reach test:

1.        Sit with your knees extended and legs flat on the floor.   Have a partner hold your

knees so they do not come off the floor.

2.        Lean forward with your arms extended and have your partner measure the

distance from your fingertips to your toes.  Your hands should be next to each


3.   Record your score.   If you do not reach your toes, the number is recorded

negatively in inches.  If you do reach past your toes, the number is recorded

positively in inches.

4.  Compare your scores with those in the chart below.



Female                   Excellent            Good              Average               Needs Improvement


Adult                          + 6                 + 4-6               + 2-4                     – 2

Junior                         + 8                 + 7-8               + 5-7                     – 5


Male                      Excellent            Good               Average               Needs Improvement


Adult                         +3                   + 1-3               + 0-1                       0

Junior                        +4                   +  2-4              + 1-2                     – 1



The 1.5 mile run test:

1.        Find a quarter mile track (most high schools or community colleges)

2.        Find a start point and set your stop watch and run 6 laps and record time.

3.        Compare to table below.


Female             Excellent            Good             Average               Needs Improvement

Adult                 11:49             11:49-13:43      13:43-15:08          15:08

Junior                10:30             10:30-11:00      11:00-11:30          11:30

Male                Excellent            Good             Average               Needs Improvement

Adult                 8:44                 8:44-10:47      10:47-12:20          12:20

Junior                9:45                 9:45-10:15      10:15-11:00          11:00










The 20 yard dash test:

Procedure: (seconds)

1.        The distance from the baseline to the opposite service line is 20 yards.

2.        Start at the baseline and have someone time you from the baseline to service line.

3.        Compare yourself with the chart below.



Female                Excellent           Good                  Average           Needs Improvement

Adult                    3.30                3.33-3.40             3.40-3.60            3.80

Junior                   2.90                3.20-3.36             3.20-3.54            3.62

Male                   Excellent           Good                  Average           Needs Improvement

Adult                   3.20                 3.20-3.30            3.30-3.50             3.50

Junior                  2.90                 2.90-3.00            3.00-3.30             3.30


The spider run test:

Procedure: (seconds)

1. Position 5 balls on the tennis court; one on each corner where the baseline and single

sidelines meet. One on each side where the singles sideline and service lines meet.

Also place one ball on the t or center service line intersection.

2. The player starts at the center hash mark in the middle of the baseline and must retrieve

all five balls and place them into a hat or area just behind the center hash mark.

3. The balls must be retrieved in a counterclockwise direction.

4.  Start with one foot behind the center hash mark about 12 inches back, say go and start

the clock.

5.    Record your time and compare with the chart.


Female               Excellent             Good                Average            Needs Improvement

Adult                   17.30                17:30-18:00      18:00-18:30         18:30

Junior                  17:10                17:10-17:16      17:16-17:34         17:34

Male                  Excellent              Good                Average           Needs Improvement

Adult                   15:00                15:00-15:30      15:30-16:00         16:00

Junior                  14:60                14:60-15:00      15:00-15:40          15:40


The grip test:


This test is good to understand the by-product of a weak grip.  It gives you and understanding of how to prevent wrist and elbow injuries.  It also helps you hold the racquet better on the off-center hits.  Grip strength measures the strength of the fingers flexors and forearm muscles.   The challenge for everybody is to get a dynamometer to measure your strength.  I feel the test is important, but not necessary , unless you are constantly having the racquet rotate in your hand and loose your grip. If this is the problem then have the test done at a physical therapy clinic.



The push-up test for upper body strength and endurance:

Procedure: 60 (seconds)

1. Extend your arms, but keep your head, shoulders, back, hips, knees, and feet in a

straight line.

2.  Make sure you maintain a straight body line during the complete exercise.

3.  To count as a complete push-up, the upper arm must reach parallel to the floor.

4.     Compare your scores below:


Female                   Excellent               Good             Average       Needs Improvement

Adult                          44                       34-44             27-36              24

Junior                         42                       34-42             20-34              20

Male                       Excellent               Good            Average        Needs Improvement

Adult                         49                        40-49             30-40              30

Junior                        52                        49-52             35-49              35



Vertical Jump test for a quick first step:


1.  Stand with your side to a wall and touch it with your arm extended as high as


2.  Have a partner mark the spot.
3.  Extend and attach a yardstick up the wall from the hightest reach of your fingertips.

4.  Put chalk on your fingers before you jump.

5.  Jump with your side facing the wall (do not take a step), reaching as high as you

can on the yardstick.

6.  The difference between your standing reach and the hightest point of your jump is

your score.

7.      Compare your score in the table below.


Female               Excellent                Good                Average        Needs Improvement

Adult                     21                        16-21                 12-16               12

Junior                    22                        17-21                 13-17               13

Male                  Excellent                 Good                 Average       Needs Improvement

Adult                    27                         22-27                 17-22               17

Junior                   28                         26-28                  21-26              21









The hexagon test measures foot quickness in changing direction:


1.  On the ground, use masking tape to crate a hexagon (six sides with angles of 120

degrees) Make each side 24 inches long.

2.  Stand in the middle of the hexagon and remain facing in the same direction

throughout the test.

3.  When the partner gives you the command, “ready go”  jump forward over the tape

and immediately back into the hexagon (your partner should be timing you)

4.  Continue to face forward, jump over the next side and back to the middle,  repeat

for each side.

5.   Continue this pattern by jumping over all six sides and  back to the middle each

time for three full revolutions of the hexagon.

6.   When your feet enter the hexagon after three full revolutions, your partner should

stop the clock and record your time.

7.   Compare with the table below.



Female           Excellent              Good             Average        Needs Improvement

Adult                12.00               12.00-12.10     12.10-12.40       13.40

Junior               10.48               10.48-11.70      11.70-12.30       12.30

Male              Excellent              Good              Average        Needs Improvement

Adult                11.80               11.80-13.00      13.00-13.50        13.50

Junior               11.10               11.10-11.80       11.80-12.70        12.70



Sideways shuffle measures lateral speed:


1.  Start on the center service line at the T, with one foot on either side

of the line, facing the net.

2.  While facing the net, shuffle along the service line, touch the doubles

sideline, then shuffle to the opposite doubles sideline, and continue

back to the center.(crossover steps are not allowed)

3.  Compare to the table for results.



Female          Excellent             Good               Average           Needs Improvement

Adult              6.0                    6.0-7.0               7.0-7.3               7.3

Junior             7.0                    7.0-7.1               7.1-7.4               7.4

Male             Excellent              Good               Average          Needs Improvement

Adult              6.4                    6.4-6.7              6.7-7.0                7.0

Junior             5.5                    5.5-5.6              5.6-5.7                5.7


The training Regimen some considerations:


Perceived                       Maximum                       Perceived

Exertion                         Heart                               Exertion

Rating                             Rate (%)                         Description

20                                   >

19                                   >    90%                           Very, Very Hard

18                                   >

17                                                                                      Very Hard


15                                   >  80-89%                                           Hard


13                                   >  60-79%                          Somewhat Hard


11                                   >  35-59%                               Fairly Light


9                                                                                        Very Light


7                                     >  35%                                Very, Very Light


warm up                            aerobic segment                    cool down

5-10 min                             at least 20 min                      10-20 min


Program considerations for training should follow these general routines

1.        Warm-up before you exercise

2.        Monitor exercise intensity with scale

3.        Cool down should follow each session

4.        Monitor progress form week to week by charting results

5.        Be consistent and remember to recover

6.        Periodization  before competition


The stages of  Periodization

1.        preparation stage

2.        pre-competition stage

3.        competition stage

4.        transition stage


The percent of workload and intensity during stages of periodization are: High volume during early stages with low intensity level.  Intensity level increases as volume decreases before peak performance.






Workout Chart (week to week progress)




Special Considerations_____________________


General Exercise Program:

Activity or Exercise                  date      #sets      #reps     weight       ER        + or –
















Fit  —F= Frequency —I=Intensity—-T=Time


Recommend Exercises :                                           Area Developed


1. Squats or lunges weights 3×3 sets    per week       (back, legs, butt)

2. Set-ups  –(roman chair)  3×3 x 100 per week        (abs, stomach)

3. Bench press——–         3×3 light weight 20 reps   (chest)

4. Curls wrist/biceps——3×3 light weight 15-20reps  (forearm, bicep)

5. Leg extension & curls——3×3 light weight 15-20reps (quads, thigh)

6. Up-right row & lat pull down 3×3 light weight 15-20 reps(lats, deltoid)

7. Overhead press ———-3×3 light weight 15-20 reps  (upper back, arms)

Speciality Exercises

1.        Forearm Pronation

2.        Wrist Extensors

3.        Forearm Supination

4.        External  & Internal Shoulder Rotation

5.        Rotary Torso Machine

6.        Hip Rotation & Back Extension Machine

7.        Recommended book (Complete Conditioning for Tennis)

Emotional Management (knowing thy-self)


3 States of mind/emotion

1.        Happy

2.        Sad

3.        Mad

3 Frames of Mind/Thinking

1.        Past

2.        Future

3.        Present

3 Choices of Reaction

1.        Positive

2.        Negative

3.        Indifference/Neutral


The Peak Performance Formula


Energy      =


Positive    =



+ 3




+ 2


Mental  = State



Neutral Self =

+ 1


= 0




– 1


– 2

 Worry   =


Mad/Sad     =





– 3

Please remember !!!!! Nathaniel Branden “in honoring the self 1983 of all the judgment that we pass in life, none is as important as the one we pass on ourselves, for that judgment touches the very center of our existence”.


You create the positive mental state through perception



Effects of the State of Mind and Emotion



1.        Better Performance

2.        Better Execution of Goals

3.        Better P.M.S.

4.        Better Tactics

5.        Better Self-Esteem

6.        Better Control & Energy

7.        Better Focus & Stress Management



1.        Poor Performance

2.        Decreased Execution

3.        Poor Attitude

4.        Tactical Inconsistency

5.        Decreased Self-Esteem

6.        Poor Concentration

7.        Hopelessness

8.        Poor Intensity & Control



1.        Destruction of Judgment

2.        Inadequate Result Management

3.        Trying Too Hard

4.        Hurrying to Make Mistakes

5.        No Self-Worth

6.        Poor Time Management

7.        Negative Performance

8.        Total Stress Perceived


Albert Mehrabian 1968 analyzed typical communications with the impact of messages divided 3 ways:

1.        7% verbal (words)

2.         38% Paralanguage

3.         55% Body Language

Clearly what we do, and how we do it, speaks more loudly than what we say!

Body language also reveals information about our unconscious feelings.










Emotional Traps

1.        How to Avoid

2.        How to Get Out of the Trap

3.        How to Avoid the Trap in the First Place


How to Avoid Emotional Traps

1.        Set performance goals, not out-come goals.

2.        Set challenging, not easy, goals

3.        Set realistic, not unrealistic goals

4.        Set short-term, not long-term goals

5.        Emphasize individual goals over team goals.


How to Get Out of the Emotional Trap

1.        Goals improve performance so set them.

2.        Goals improve the quality of practices

3.        Goals clarify expectations.

4.        Goals help relieve boredom by making training more challenging.

5.        Goals increase intrinsic motivation to achieve.

6.        Goals increase pride, satisfaction, and self-confidence.


How to Avoid the Traps in the First Place

1.        Sensory Awareness Training

2.        Vividness Training

3.        Controllability Training





The State of Mind  =  3 Selfs

1.        Positive

2.        Negative

3.        Neutral


You make the choice to behave in one of these 3 States of Mind!












Characteristics of States of Emotion



1.        Elation

2.        Pride

3.        Positive Feedback

4.        Balance

5.        Integration

6.        Focus

7.        Fearless

8.        Fun


1.        Arrogance

2.        Judgment

3.        Self-Depreciation

4.        Martyrdom

5.        Self-Doubt

6.        Irrational Beliefs

7.        Lack of Interest/Focus


1.        Fear

2.        Inadequate Feeling

3.        Greed

4.        Self-Awareness Gone

5.        No Understanding

6.        Self-Destruction

7.        No Self-Worth

8.        No Timing or Personality

9.        No Management of Feelings


Irrational Beliefs that Stress:

a.        I must be loved or approved

b.        I must not make errors or do poorly, if  I do it’s terrible.

c.        You should blame people  who act unfairly or unkindly.

d.        The past influenced feelings today.

e.        Expectations of what I want them to be.








KINESICS                                     PRE-COMPETITION

(BODY LANGUAGE)                  STAGE


APPEARANCE                             INTERGRATION OF

Ie. (worried)                                   PSYCHOLOGICAL



POSTURE                                      SETTING

Ie; (hang-dog)                                 PERFORMANCE




Ie; (hand moves)                             ENGINEER THE





Ie; (nail biting)                               ON-SITE




EYE-MOVEMENT                       PRE-EVENT

ie; (feeling overwhelmed                  ROUTINE







The  psychology of tennis and the mental training is the big question.  How is your P.M.S. or Positive , Mental , State?  The truth is a straight arrow, it teaches balance from perception.



Remember that understanding personality style and brain types dictates communication style.  This is why some players read the non-verbal messages better than the verbal information.












My Goals for Development:


Tennis Goals

1.        Skills

2.        Playing Level

3.        Performance General

4.        Performance Specific


Conditioning Goals

1.        Speed

2.        Agility

3.        Flexibility

4.        Aerobic Endurance

5.        Muscular Strength


Psychological Goals

1.        Set Performance Goals not Outcome Goals

2.        Set Specific yet Realistic

3.        Set Short Term

4.        P.M.S.



Categories for Specificity:


1.0                 to 3.0 level players


3.0                 to  4.5 level players


4.5  to   7.0 level players


Through the process of self-evaluation of Tennis Skills, Physical, and Psychological the Goals can better facilitate the Action Plans for better Results.  This Process is Short Term or Long Term determined by you and your Individual Deadlines & Results based on Time availability, Low Volume or High Volume Intensity.









Tennis Skills Personal Evaluation


_______Overall Rating Mental Skills    Goal_________________________


_______Overall Rating Physical Skills  Goal_________________________


_______Overall Rating Serve                 Goal_________________________


_______Overall Rating Volley               Goal_________________________


_______Overall Rating Overhead          Goal_________________________


_______Overall Rating Forehand           Goal_________________________


_______Overall Rating Backhand          Goal_________________________


These are the average of your individual analysis of Skills in Player Evaluation.


Conditioning Skills Personal Evaluation/Goal


_______1.5 mile run time    Goal  time___________


_______20 yard dash time  Goal time____________


_______Hexagon test time  Goal time____________


_______Side Shuffle time   Goal time____________


_______Spider test  time     Goal time____________


_______Vertical jump inches  Goal inches ________


_______Push ups in 60 sec    Goal push ups 60 sec_______


_______Sit-ups  3sets of 100 Goal Sit-ups __________


_______Sit and Reach inches Goal Sit and Reach ________



This is the starting point in your Personal Evaluation of Skills and Gives you a comparison of Skills vs Goals.





Psychological Skills / Goals


Performance Goals For the Next 3 Months: (please list 3 )








Specific Yet Realistic: (list 3 )








How is your P.M.S. (postive, mental, state)

List Goals in your Behavior 3 please








Any other Short Term Mental Goals(list 3)










This gives you better understanding of personal development in the mental area of your game that hinders or helps performance.








Match Summary


1.        Did you have a plan for your match?———————————-yes—–no

2.        What was your plan bases on?

a. your own style of play or strengths———————————–yes—–no

b. Your opponents weakness———————————————yes—–no

3.        How well did you stick to your plan?

a. not at ll     b.  sometimes    c. most of the time   d. all of the time


4.        How long did it take for you to find your opponent’s weakness?

a. Not at all   b. Sometimes    c. Most of the time   d. All of the time

e.        Played them before and already knew the weakness


5.        Did you make necessary changes to your opponent’s style of play?—-yes—-no

6.        Did you use the time on the changeover to think about what was going on in the match?—————————————————————————yes—-no

7.        Did you feel that you had control of the match?—————————yes—–no

8.        Did you feel that your opponent had control of the match?————–yes—–no

9.        Regardless of the outcome, did you perform well?————————yes—–no

10.      Did you concentrate and focus on the task of playing?

a.  Not at all     b.  Sometimes     c.  Most of the time     d.  All of the time

11.  Did you have control of your Emotions throughout the match?

a. Not at all     b.  Sometimes      c.  Most of the time     d. All of the time

12.  Did you give your very best effort?

a.  Not at all     b. Sometimes      c.  Most of the time       d. All of the time

13.  What were your strengths?

a.  Conditioning   b.  forehand   c.  Backhand   d.  Serve    e.  Return of Serve

f.  Volley      g.  Overhead    h.   lob    i.  Emotional control

14.  What were your weakness?

a.  Conditioning   b.  Forehand  c.  Backhand  d.  Serve   e.  Return of Serve

f.  Volley    g.  Overhead     h.  Lob     i.  Emotional control

15.  What should you practice in order to play better next time?

a.  Conditioning  b.  Forehand   c. Backhand   d.  Serve  e.  Return of Serve

f.  Volley   g.  Overhead     h.  Lob     i.  Emotional control


16.  What did you learn from the match?_________________________






17.  Did you have fun?——————————————————yes—–no









Development of Training Formula


Stroke or Skill that broke down during competition:


1. Forehand –area of court where I broke down______

Kill zone


2. Backhand—area of court where I broke down______

Attack zone


3. Volley—area of court where I broke down______


Defence Zone

4. Overhead—area of court where I broke down_____


Extreme defence are of the court ball usually on the baseline and player in trouble

5. Approach shot—FH or BH  direction & area______


6. Serve –direction, depth, spin, 1st or 2nd  duce or add_______


7. Tactics–shot selection, passing shots, serve volley______


8. Strategy—pressure by position, score,weaknesses______




Before match focus:______________________________


Tactical use of Skills_____________________________


To change I must do these things____________________________


Comments/Personal Analysis:________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________











Chart of Players Schedules:


















1.0 TO 2.0



2.0 TO 3.0



3.0 TO 4.0



4.0 TO  5.0



5.0 TO 7.0


























The Serve:

Outline of the Mechanics / Progressions to Serve better:



Contact  Point

Backswing to Contact Point


Stance and Weight transfer

Combo Racquet movement and Weight Transfer

Backswing from Ready Position

Rythem Down – Up

Touch the back and catch the ball

Touch the back and hit the ball

Bi-pass the shoulder blades loop and hit

Progress to the baseline and hit

Too far forward in the net, Too far back long

Practice the loop without the ball homework


The Forehand GroundStroke


Outline of the Mechanics/ Progressions to a better Forehand



Contact Point



Backswing to contact with Followthrough

The Turn Position with Loop to Backswing

The Loop

The Turn with the full Stroke

Movement and Footwork



The Backhand GroundStroke

Outline of the Mechanics / Progressions to a better Backhand



Contact Point


Backswing to contact with Followthrough

The Turn Position with Loop to Backswing

The Turn with the Full Stroke

Movement and Footwork

The Volley Forehand and Backhand

Outline of the Mechanics /with Progressions for a better Volley



Contact Point



Racquet Movement

The finish

The full Stroke with the Turn


The Overhead Smash

Outline of Mechanics with Progressions for a better Overhead


Ready Position


Racquet Preparations

Contact Point

Backswing to the Contact with Followthrough

Position to the Ball

The Full Stroke


How to Practice the Skills

Outline for a better Practice to Develop the Skills



The 10 minute Practice


The 3 C’s

















The grip is the position your hand is placed

To facilitate the stroke or shot you are hitting

To better understand this position you must

Understand the eight panels of the racquet.

The racquet panels are bevels on the handle

Numbered one to eight starting with the top

Panel being number 1 with rotation to the

Right finishing with number 8.  the racquet

Positioned on its edge is how you know where

Panel number one is. It is the panel on top of

The racquet.  The first bevel you see on top of

The picture to the right will demo the position of

The hand for the services grip. The pencil is flat

Against the racquet on bevel 2 or panel 2 to denote

The correct hand position of base knuckle on panel

2 and heal of the hand on panel 1.





the contact point for the services stroke is at the peak of the reach and arm positioned about 1:30-2 oclock if 12 is in front of your nose.  The racquet face is flat to the net and positioned slightly forward of the body.  The picture will demo this position and how the feet are to start.  This is not the service stance and is only for the isolation of the upper body for the production of a proper contact and toss.  This is a good way to practice the proper place to meet the ball.


The backswing of the stroke is the position where the racquet travels from the lowest point of the racquet down the back to the contact point.  This introduces the pronation of the wrist as the racquet travels up too the contact point.  The racquet rotates 90% from the backscratch position to the contact point. You must practice this movement a few times to get the feel of the racquet turning. The picture will demo this movement.































The followthrough is the rotation of the racquet from the point of contact to the finish. It is the movement that relaxes the forearm and not decelerate the racquet head speed at contact of the ball.  This movement is where the racquet travels past the left hip and down near our side. The example is the picture to the right.



The stance or weight transfer is the very important for the stroke.  The feet are positioned alone the center line to demo the correct starting position for proper rotation of the hips and shoulders. The front foot is pointed at a forward and the back at about a 45% angle.  The hips turn and the shoulders face the net as the weight transfers from back to front. This is important for a proper ball toss in that the weight must be back as you release the pitch of the ball to have the toss in a good striking position. The back shoe laces are pointed at the net if the position is correct.  Now practice the movement with the racquet in hand.  Swing the racquet to contact point and transfer the weight from back to front with the shoulders and hips rotating towards the net. The picture to the right will help you understand this position.  This progression is very important for power on the stroke.



























































The backswing of the racquet from ready position is the movement of the racquet from in front of the body to the backscratch position.  This term of backscratch for lack of a better name or explanation is the position of the racquet at low point of backswing.  The racquet travels down past the toes like pendulum dropping and continuing up until both the right and left are make the letter V and then the racquet drops down the back to the low point of the backswing.  This movement is a half circle with a full circle behind the back and another half circle when following through. The rhythm is a down together and up together movement with both arms dropping down in sync and then traveling up in sync to the V position before the racquet does the loop behind the back.  The picture show the progression of the racquet movement for the example.  How to achieve this rhythm is to pitch the ball and while in the air the racquet travels to the back and touches before the catch of the ball.  This exercise is the perfect practice for a good toss and good rhythm. The picture to the right will show the position of the toss and arms and racquet with the weight back. The weight back ensures that the toss will be positioned well. The give you a guide you should not have to move your hand and the ball pitch will come right back into it each time if the weight is back when the exercise is done.
























































The bi-pass of the shoulder blades or loop of the racquet before we strike the ball.  This is the circle of the racquet behind the back with the racquet bi-passing both the right and left shoulder blade. The best way to feel this is to pretend to touch your back and let the racquet continue without the touch and circle past the back and continue to the follow through. This is the loop or circle movement to accelerate the racquet head for power and rhythm. The movement should not hitch or pause during this stage of the stroke. The ball pitch at this point in the stroke is very important because if too high you will miss the ball if too low you will hit the handle. The racquet must not decelerate or power is lost. The picture right helps you see the position of the racquet before contact of the ball during the loop.


The next progression is to back up to the baseline and develop the skill from the baseline position.  The important thing here is to see why the ball travels into the net or goes long. The position of the toss too far forward presents the face of the racquet closed at contact and the serve will travel into the net.  The ball position too far back presents the racquet face open at contact and the serve will travel long. Simple concept too far forward into the net, too far back the ball will go long.  The window for striking the ball is at the peak of the reach with about a 12 inch margin forward or back in the ark of the swing and the serve will land either deeper or shorter in the service box.





















































The forehand grip and the position of the knuckle and heel of the hand.  The grip is called an eastern position for the base knuckle is on panel 3 and heel of the hand on panel 2. the pencil is flat to the knuckle or face of the racquet to better picture the how the hand is on the racquet.  The pencil is flat to the net not tilted or angled to the net when the hand is correct on the grip. Remember the bevels of the racquet are number from 1-8 starting at the top and rotating around. The picture to the right will give you a clear view of the position.


The contact point for the forehand is just in front of our left foot and positioned with the face of the racquet flat to the net.  The picture to the right will demo the position.  The same is true for left handed players with just the opposite position. The stance is with the left foot transferring weight into the shot in the direction of the intended target. The feet and hips rotate just like the serve and hips and shoulders rotate into the ball.


The follow through is pushing the racquet forward and upward like a jet airplane taking off. The racquet graudually elevates to above the left shoulder with the face and eyes tracking looking over the right arm. The hips and shoulders rotate to allow the right arm to finish opposite the left shoulder and on edge. The left hand catches the racquet to ensure weight is forward and there is a physical check point to end the stroke correctly.  The addition of the left hand also helps in the preparation of the next shot weather it be a forehand or backhand shot. The left hand helps manipulate the racquet for the next stroke.

















































The backswing of the racquet at the bottom of the ark. The racquet face is closed or with the strings down and handle pointed towards the net. The example of the stroke is demonstrated to the right along the center service line.  The arm should be fully extended at the bottom of the swing.  The face of the racquet moves forward to the contact point and becomes flat at impact.  The strings down ensure that the face is flat at contact of the ball.  This is important to ensure the ball will stay in and travel straight.


The turn is where the racquet starts before it drops in a circular fashion down to the low point of the backswing. This is the position in the previous picture with the strings down.  The start of this stroke takes place from the turned position with the racquet tilted about 10 o clock with the edge of the racquet facing the net. The right elbow is out from the side about 8 to 10 inches to ensure the face of the racquet stays closed and the racquet backswing  is not too long. The feet are slightly open to the court to allow the step to travel in any direction. the left hand cradles the head or shaft to ensure the upper body is turned and the racquet does not travel back too far. Please look at the picture to the right to see visual characteristics.




The racquet starts the movement to strike the ball with the left hand dropping and pointing at the ball. The racquet face stays closed and begins its loop down to the bottom of the backswing with the strings closed.


















































From the turn position the racquet starts is downward movement in a circular fashion like the letter C.  the racquet head follows the dials of the clock starting at 12 and continuing to 6 at the bottom of the clock and then to contact and followthrough. This movement is a continuous movement with the racquet form the point you start the swing. The racquet does not stop until it gets to the finish.



The one handed backhand and the progressions for development. The grip is with the base knuckle position on the top panel of the racquet number 1.  the heel of the hand is positioned on panel 8 the pencil should be flat across the first panel and look like the picture to the right.  This is called an eastern backhand grip and allows us to contact the ball well in front of the body.  The thumb of the hitting hand is positioned up the handle for additional support and can be wrapped around for personal preference.

The heel is on bevel 8 to add additional support and present the meat of the hand behind the handle for additional power.


The contact point is any where from 10 to 18 inches in front of the right foot. The demo in the picture to the right is the difference between a one handed contact point and a two handed contact point. The one out in front is a one handed position to strike the ball. The second is the position of a two handed backhand.


The stance is the same for both one and two handed players  with weight being transferred by the right foot in the direction of the intended target. This is also present in the picture to the right.
















































The follow through is from contact to where the racquet makes a bridge.  The bridge is high enough to walk under without hitting your head.  The wrist is locked and racquet face pointed in the direction of the intended target. Please note that the tip of the racquet is pointed to the side and knuckles of the right hand pointed to the intended target. The racquet almost makes a right angle in relationship to the hitting arm. The left hand always travels back to counter balance the body and prevent over rotation of the shoulders.



The backswing of the racquet is with the strings down and handle pointed to the net. The left hand is on the left knee cap and cradling the shaft of the racquet. The right arm is straight and extended to demo the drop of the racquet head before the foreward movement to the contact of the ball. The right foot has stepped and transferred weight and the legs have started their sit before the upward movement to strike the ball. The face of the racquet becomes square at contact without changing the wrist position and ensuring a vertical strike of the ball. This ensures topspin and strings straight as contact is made.


The turn or backswing of the racquet is with the racquet on the hip and forearm slightly bent across the tummy.  The face is closed and shoulders turned and sideways to the net. The feet slightly open and left hand manipulates the racquet in a small circular fashion down to the bottom of the backswing.  This movement develops momentum as the racquet drops to accelerate to contact the ball.  Once the racquet starts this move to contact it should be one movement and not stop until the follow through.















































The turn from ready position takes the racquet back at eye level and positions it on the hip with the strings down. The feet then position to account for the ball and weight transfer.




The two handed groundstroke typically the backhand.  The grip is the same as the forehand with the left hand and the right hand has a services grip position. The right hand is in a continental grip position with the base knuckle on panel 2 and the heel on panel or bevel 1.  the left hand is on panel 7 with the base knuckle on panel 8. the left hand is really in a eastern forehand grip for a left handed tennis player.  The hands are close together as pictured in the follow through to the right.


The contact point for the two handed grip is just in front of the right foot as demonstrated in the picture to the right. The racquet strikes the ball just in front  of the left foot because of the additional hand holding the racquet. The picture demos the difference between a one handed contact point and a two hand contact point.  The racquet held with the right hand is a one handed backhand position and the one held with the left hand is a two handed backhand position.


The follow through is with the left hand finishing across the body and opposite the right shoulder with the racquet on edge.  The hips and lower body rotate through to allow the racquet to continue to the intended target.  The left arm should be extended while the right arm will be slightly bent when finished. The face and shoulders should rotate enough to allow the face to look at the court in the direction of the intended target.















































The racquet at the low point of the backswing should be closed and the handle pointing at the net.  The arms are extended and the right should lined sideways to the net. The right foot transfers weight towards the intended target. The face of the racquet closed ensures that the strings will be straight at the contact of the ball. The face is not as closed as the forehand stroke you saw earlier because of the additional hand on the racquet.


The turn or racquet position before the drop of the head to the low point of the backswing.  The racquet handle rest on the side of the hip with the head of the racquet about shoulder height and the strings tilted slightly down.  The left hand is next to the right hand and left arm bent to accommodate the two handed grip. The racquet drops in a circular fashion to the low point of the backswing strings down. This movement allows the player to develop rhythm and momentum as the racquet falls to the bottom of its ark. The racquet then continues up and through to the intended target. This movement should be continuous and fluid until the racquet stops at the finish.  The step with the right foot should take place as the racquet drops to the low point of the backswing.  The body starts to sit down as in a chair and then starts up and forward as you contact the ball.  The racquet continues to the follow through.
























































The forehand volley starts with the ready position at the net. The player stands with racquet in the middle ready to respond both left and right directionally. The first step to understand this stoke is the contact point or were to strike the ball. The grip is the same as the forehand groudstroke position with the base knuckle on panel 3 and the heel on panel 2.  the best method to understand this stroke and grip is through progressions or steps. The first step is to position the hand and 3 fingers behind the throat and face of the racquet as pictured to the right.  The contact point for this shot is just in front of the left foot as with the forehand groundstroke.  The movement of the racquet is forward and slightly downward in the direction of the intended target.  By holding the racquet so high it give the feel of striking the ball with your hand leaving you understanding the face of the racquet and palm of hand are one in the same.


Step two is to slide the racquet hand down the handle and strike more shots to reinforce the feeling of hand and face. The next progression is to the handle with the left hand cradling the throat of the racquet as pictured to the right.  The left hand manipulates the racquet and helps in the turn of the shoulders to present the racquet before contact of the ball.  The racquet position is adjusted to the height of the ball so as to line up the face of the racquet to the fight of the oncoming ball.  The racquet moves forward with the face pointing to the direction of the target and finishing to the middle.  The total length of the shot is only 12-15 inches of backswing and never traveling back further than periferial  vision.  The transfer of weight is with the left foot and should travel in the direction of intended target.















































The backhand volley has a lot of the same characteristics as the forehand volley. The grip is the same as the one handed backhand groundstroke with the base knuckle position at panel 1 and the heel of the hand on panel 8.  the thumb can also be place up the handle for additional support.  The first step in this shots production is the contact point. The player position the hand on the face of the racquet thumb behind the strings and throat. This position allows the players to strike the ball with the feeling of hitting  with their thumb.  This also teaches the correct place to strike the ball and which side of the body to hit the backhand volley. The thumb is then slid down to the throat to the top of the handle with the left hand cradling the throat to stablize the head of the racquet.  The player strikes the ball from this position to feel the movement of the racquet and as the right hand travels forward the left hand travel back. This is a counter balance move to prevent a bad finish.  The right hand then moves to the bottom of the handle and the same movement is produced.  The pictures to the right will better explain the presentation of the racquet before you contact the ball.  The right hand drags the racquet across as the right foot transfers weight in the direction of the intended target.  The body position to height and racquet positions to fight path of the oncoming ball.

























































The overhead smash shot for handling the lob player.  The ready position is the same for the volley and groundstokes . the picture to the right will give you a better idea.  The overhead is a shorter stoke than the server but has similar characteristics.  The backswing is a short take-up of the racquet right past the ear as it travels to the backscratch position.  The right foot steps back to line the players sideways to the net as the left hand points at the oncoming lob or high ball.

The sideways position is just like the serve position and the racquet movement is similar to the movement of the serve. The major differences are the toss and the take-up of the racquet.  The lob is struck by the opponent and you must position under the ball to strike in the same contact  point as the serve.

The contact point is the same as the serve and is done with the racquet extended and left hand pointing to adjust to the ball. The player moves under the lob to tap the ball at the peak to show the good position under the ball.

The player from the backscratch position taps the ball to rehearse the full leverage of arm extension before they follow through.  The picture to the right will help the visual learning.  The followthrough is the same as the serve with the racquet pronating and finishing on the left side.  The example right with clearly demonstrate the form.  The step are preparation, position with the body, keep your head up, contact and follow through.






















































Special notice:


Practice session and progression offer an opportunity to work on improving each player’s respective weaknesses.   The steps presented above with pictorial demonstrate the techniques to improvement of basic skills or fixing an existing skill. The common challenge is the diagnosis of the individual weakness.  The key if you are not sure of the illness is then do all the steps and one of them will fix the stroke or weakness.  Prepare a daily practice chart so that you know specifically what to work on that day or week.  This can be on a master sheet or workout schedule. Even though you will set aside time to work on specific strokes, you can seldom cover more than two particular corrective exercises in an afternoon.  You cannot possibly go through all phases of all strokes every day.



Not covered in Progressions:


Since serve and return of serve are such important strokes, they should be receive constant attention at practice.  The normal way to return for our purposes is just the groudstroke forehand and backhand.  Each day you practice you should hit 50 serves a day and 50 returns with a record of the number of good serves hit.



Danger, Danger, Danger


Avoid aimless hitting and not organized workouts.  Assign yourself to do a particular drill or drills and follow that schedule.  Limit the time of each drill and stay focused on the skill or exercise.  If you lack a disciplined approach  and there is no purpose to the practice then stop play now!. This is not a practice , just recreational play period.  Progress is the by-product of constructive practice. If you want to play for fun do so, but don’t count it for a practice or development of skill.