Message About The Site

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Sam Langley is an accomplished Professional Tennis Coach residing in San Diego, California. Through his relentless endeavor to improve his students abilities in the great game of tennis, he has created this web site dedicated to video enhanced learning tools and instruction. The site uses QuickTime as it's video player of choice and operates at 32bit. If you are using a 64bit browser you will be unable to view the video content offered. For best results please download the latest QuickTime update found here QT UPDATE.


Points Of Interest


Aiku Shintani Reporting on Tennis in Japan pic
My experiences with the Japan tennis program.
The players in Japan were mostly all short and they were very consistent players. Mostly everybody tossed the ball to the left and they tried to hit flat serves. It didn’t look very comfortable to me. Compared to the juniors in Southern California the players there had very loopy but decent shots in the 14s. When I watched the matches of the top juniors in the area I was in, they had pretty good serves and consistent powerful shots.
The main court that juniors over there practice on was called omuni clay. It was basically turf with sand on it. It was very easy to slide on just like clay is. It was very hard to get used to since it was the first time had played on it in my life. The other court that I played on for the first time was carpet it was very easy to run on but very hard to time your shots because the ball didn’t bounce as much.
I was unfamiliar with many things in Japan. One thing I was surprised about was the amount of balls they sell in cans. There were either 2 balls or 4 balls per can and in matches it was always a can of two balls. Another thing that surprised me was that I had to put the net up before I played sometimes.
The main racquet used there was pretty much Yonex but there were a lot of other racquet brands that I have never heard of such as Mizuno and Srixon. I saw some kids using Babolat but Yonex and Dunlop were the most common. The most common ball used was called Srixon.
The shoes that were sold there were very different. There were shoes for omuni clay hard court and all around use. The bottoms of the shoes were all very different. For example the omuni clay ones were made so you can slide and stop. pic When I practiced in Japan all the kids there did not practice there serves that much. They never did baskets of serves because they have to pay for the courts hourly. I asked one of the players if he ever served baskets and he said that it would be a waste of his money.
One thing that didn’t make any sense was that you had to wear a collared shirt in almost every tournament. I had never heard of that in my life so it was very surprising. Another thing that I didn’t know was that they called the score advantage server or receiver instead of ad-in or ad-out.
In the one tournament that I played in all the players had to check in at 8:30. All the matches were played with regular scoring but the match was only 1 set. Before the match we only were allowed 4 serves for the warm up. Also there were warm up courts before everybody’s matches started and you had to sign up for them and you could only use them for 15 minutes.
I also went to watch a tournament where my friend that I was practicing with was playing in. Apparently it was a very big tournament and there were a lot of amazing players. I watched one of his matches and I saw that he was very patient and he was steady so he beat the 5th seed. I learned that he had very strong mental skills and I have to work on that kind of stuff.
I went to a mental training class at a local university and I learned a lot about how to stay mentally focused. At the class we wrote down the month’s worth of plans of what we are going to do. We also wrote down what kind of things we do after matches and before matches and I learned a lot there.



Junior Experiences

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Texas Memories by Kimo Barrere

The Boys Fourteen’s Super National Hard Court Championships this year was in San Antonio, Texas. Temperatures over there go over 100oF with a humidity of over 90%. That’s a pretty big jump from San Diego’s weather. Because of that, I decided to arrive four days early to acclimate to the weather. I was excited – it was time to go to a new state, with my favorite aunt. We got a rental car as soon as we landed and headed over to the main site for the tournament – McFarlin Tennis Center– to find practice in the remaining days before the tournament. The head coach, Andy, was happy to have me join his group practices and fulfill my needs tennis-wise. We accepted his offer and drove to our new temporary home. We were lucky enough to have good friends that live in San Antonio that provided us with a roof over our heads and did whatever we asked. What good friends! pic The routine for the next couple of days usually started with waking up at 7:00. After all the morning rituals, like brushing teeth and getting dressed, I’d eat breakfast, which usually consisted of a bagel with cream cheese and my sports drink. Once I was done with that, I would get ready to go, collect my tennis bag, cooler, hats, towels, sunscreen, spare clothes, and all the other stuff I was expecting to need. On the car ride, I would put on my sunscreen, tie my shoes, and stay hydrated with my sports drink (the weather made it really important to keep cool and stay hydrated). Once we arrived, I would do my agility jog and stretches to prevent injury and start warming up my serve. When Andy showed up, he would pair the other kids and me up, have us warm up with each other, and have us play points out. The winners moved up a court, the losers moved down. I always stayed on the top court. When we were done, my aunt and I would go to a Subway and eat lunch/hang out until it was time for my next practice. I htat practice, I would hit with a pro working on specific stuff my coach wanted. Each practice was an hour and a half. Then, I would go home and eat dinner, rest up, maybe play some video games with my friend, and go to sleep. pic
This schedule kept me in rhythm for the tournament, but didn’t get me too tired. I had lots of fun. Some of the days, we ended really early, so we were able to squeeze in some site-seeing of the missions that were close by. My friends were really happy to have us over and enjoyed the time too. My aunt seemed to be happy and enjoyed the experience of the whole thing. But the nice, easy schedule wasn’t meant to last… The draws came out and I had to play a Texan. On the day on the tournament, I woke up knowing I had to play hard, but knew I had to stay relaxed for now. I ate leftover pasta from the previous night and left for Mcfarlin, arriving an hour early from my match in order to warm up with another player. I was playing pretty good, but something was a little off. Something always was, but I was feeling good, and that’s what matters. We both finished and headed to the front desk to check-in. I talked to some of my friends while I waited for things to be sorted by the officials. People started to be called up and I heard my name. I was told my court number and saw that my opponent was a short scrawny kid. On the court, I warmed up with him. He hit ok, but I knew if I played my game, I could make it through. We then started the match. Boy did he hit the ball slow. It threw me off my rhythm and I lost the first game in a heartbeat. We switched sides and I mishit a couple balls, but won because I was smarter. I struggled like this but won the first set, and was up in the second, when I was tired of playing someone that was weaker than me. I suddenly won the last couple of games like how I should, fast and easy. I shook his hand and turned in the score. The day was done, for singles. I still had doubles. I went back home to refuel on supplies and relax after I stretched a little.

Story continues here