USPTA Southern Division: Where Excellence is STANDARD
The USPTA Southern Division
Volume 13 Issue 3: June, 2012
pg 2. . . . . . . . . . . . . Prolong Your Career with Nutrition
pg 3-4. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Convention photos & awards
pg 6. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Special offers from the Tradeshow
pg 10. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Spotlight Fred Burdick
pg 9. . . . . . . . . . . . . . Why I Learned from the Convention
Volume 13 Issue 2
HANDLING The Situation!
andling the Situation is YOUR opportunity to share how you handle various
THE SITUATION: How do you deal with the
one bad egg on a ladies team? Nobody wants
to play with her, yet she does not realize she
should not be on this team. I have had this situation. I had to sit down with
the player and explain what is expected both
on and off the court. It was very uncomfortable but necessary. The situation worked itself
out and I did have one lady who stepped up
to play with her and tolerate the situation for a
while. This is definitely a situation that needs
to be handled sooner than later. The longer it
goes on, the harder it is to fix. Both the problem
player and the other ladies were very respectful
of me for handling the situation.
-Lane Evans, Hendersonville, NC
Our club’s rule is that any member in good
standing must be able to be on a team, but we
have captain run teams. The pros can put the
ladies on the team that “are not wanted” but the
captains do not have to play them. The ladies
will usually either change to a team that wants
them so they can play or they start acting nicer
to their teammates. It is not a perfect situation but it seems to work itself out between
the members without putting the pros in the
middle of a bad situation.
-Matt Grayson, Atlanta GA
Frankly do not get involved… at the end- whatever happens – it will be your fault .
-Viola Madej, Alpharetta, GA
I have come across this problem in the past and
there are a few options that have worked for
me. Firstly, as a promoter and teacher of tennis,
preventing someone from playing on a team
is not an option. There is always a solution that
will allow for everyone to play, and most to be
happy. One solution is to see if the “bad egg”
is interested in playing singles. If so, problem
solved. If not, a second solution is to rotate partners every match so no one person is stuck with
the “bad egg” throughout the whole season. I
have found that when the “bad egg” and their
partner win a match, the whole dynamic of the
relationship changes between those two players for the better. This will sometimes result in
a permanent partner for your “bad egg” for the
rest of the season!
-Mark Schminke, Myrtle Beach, SC
The Next Situation: How do you convince
your club/boss to reimburse you for education
expenses? How do you market to your superiors? Reply to [email protected]
Mike Barrell of Evolve9 fame consults with and sets up
10 and Under programs in several countries. He uses the
terms “Tryers, Buyers, Flyers and High Flyers” to determine
the interest and participation levels of kids participating in our sport. Let’s define these terms further. “Tryers” would be those kids who tried tennis in PE
classes, a tennis carnival, SmashZone, or maybe are a
first timer in summer camps. “Buyers” would be kids
that have committed to a weekly program or are
coming to Play Days. “Flyers” would be those who
are coming back to our programs and are getting
more involved in Play Days—perhaps they have
tried a Jr. Team Tennis season for the first time. “High Flyers” are those really committed kids who
can’t get enough of tennis, who come several times
a week, show up for every Play Day, are on a Jr. Team
Tennis team and are getting into USTA Junior Tournaments. Question: Are we providing a pathway to get kids
into the sport at whatever level of interest they have; are
we educating and connecting with their parents, and are
we seriously working at retaining as many of these kids
as we can? Not all are going to be competitive “High
Flyers”. Are our programs structured to accommodate the
rest and keep them in tennis?
Do you want to be able to teach tennis
in your later years and really enjoy the
long hours on the court? Do you want to
have less joint pain, realize more constant
energy levels, have greater mental acuity
and better overall health? Obviously,
all of us want this but are we willing to
do the few simple things regarding our
lifestyle choices to achieve these goals? There are just a few things that we can do
to enjoy a longer, healthier career. Primarily, let’s eat better and drop the excess
weight. By that I mean let’s eat whole
foods; fruit, vegetables, whole grains,
nuts and seeds - real food. Let’s cut back
on processed foods, those with empty
calories and those that can, over time,
contribute to cardiovascular disease and
diabetes - white bread, pasta, white rice,
too much dairy, too much meat of any
kind, and of course, the sweets. I›m not
suggesting total abstinence (that would
make me a huge hypocrite) but an overall
diet of the right things and very small
amounts of the things we love but aren›t
really nutrient dense. There is a great book
by Dr. Joel Fuhrman called “Eat to Live”
that is not a diet book but a primer on
common sense dietary habits. Diets don’t
work and few if any, are sustainable for
any length of time. Dr. Fuhrman has been
successful in helping people lose weight
in a healthy way, reverse cardiovascular
disease, reverse diabetes, improve blood
pressure and basically get people off
most medications. Eating better, feeling
more energized, having a better overall
attitude, and finding our ideal weight will
pay dividends for our career longevity and
we’ll also be setting an example for our
customers as healthy and fit ambassadors
of this lifetime sport. For more information, go to www.drfuhrman.com.
ave you met Butch Staples? How about Lorenzo Beltrame from
the Human Performance Institute (partner with Jim Loehr/
Jack Groppel)? Do you personally know our National President
Tom Daglis? I feel very privileged to have been in the presence of these
experts during the Southern Convention at the River Club in Suwanee,
Georgia, May 17-20. The Convention was one of the best ever. Attendants
had incredible opportunities to network, share knowledge and improve
their bottom line through new business and marketing ideas.
I feel so refreshed and excited every time I come back from our convention. I was able to bring most of my teaching team with me this time and
I could see how all of them came back to the club so energized! They had
new games, new drills and a sense of community with their colleagues
which makes the USPTA so special.
The facilities were out of a fairy tale with multi-million dollar houses and
manicured landscaping all around! Presentations ranged from pumping up
your juniors to a higher intensity, trouble shooting your game, 10u tennis,
8 stages to the serve, video analysis, the Spanish method to training high
performance athletes, business planning, marketing, client retention,
developing young juniors with the physical education model, and energizing your cardio tennis class!
Todd Upchurch, 1st V.P. for the Southern board put together an amazing action packed schedule including Thursdays’ HEAD/Penn Welcome
party, the ladies committee meeting, a rocking trade show organized by
Matt Grayson, morning cardio tennis with National Cardio speaker Viola
Madej and Jorge Andrew, cardio shoot-out contest won by Chad Oxendine, our pro am ran by Bill Riddle (which raised over $1,500!), individual
morning consultations with experts, video contest won by Peter Freeman,
the award luncheon, and Fred Burdick’s induction into the Hall of fame.
Coming up next are your State Workshops, contact your state representative to find out the dates for your individual State. Our next Southern
Convention will be held in May next year. Be ready for our World Conference
in the beautiful town of Monterey, California this coming September!
We had a tremendous
awards and Hall of Fame
luncheon, attended by
almost 100 people. This was
a great chance to celebrate
the accomplishments of
these deserving award
winners. Many people said
this was the best awards
luncheon that they have
Special thanks to awards
chairman Sophie WooronsJohnston, Hall of Fame
chairman Jeff Gray, and
awards M.C. Tom McGraw.
Volume 13 Issue 2
Hall of Fame Inductee
Allan Henry Pro of the Year
Pride of the South
Lake D’arbonne State
Park – Phil Trahan
High School Coach
Award Winners Not Pictured
Tester of the Year
Pump Up Your Cardio Classes
By now, most facilities see the benefits
of running Cardio Tennis clinics throughout
the year. They provide the membership a
no-hassle way to play during the week, an
intense work out, opportunities to meet
other members at your facility, and they
are great for stress relief. The most difficult aspect of running a successful Cardio
program is variety. It is easy to get trapped
running the same formats each week. Below
are some ways to“PUMP UP” your Cardio
programs and keep participation levels high
throughout the spring/summer.
Incorporate the following into your cardio
• Balance discs
• Jump ropes
• Resistance tubing
• Medicine Balls
• TRX suspension system
• Segment your class offerings
Ladies Group - These work great for
women who participate in leagues in your
By Chris Chopra (excerpt from the
club. You can cater the drills and point play
to work on their specific match play needs
and improve their fitness at the same time
Seniors Group - This allows the instructor to cater the clinic to seniors and provide
exercises and drills at a lower intensity level
to prevent injuries for senior players
Level of Play - Offer specific classes to
certain levels of players so you can adjust the
intensity, exercises, and drills to match the
One Good Idea!
From the Southern Convention at the River Club
Mark Kovacs’ serve presentation: Having players practice their
service toss by tossing a ball in the air and catching it is ineffective
because the players can vary their toss height by as much as a foot and
a half. It is better to have them work on their toss by executing a full
service motion. Using low compression balls can allow students to work
on their toss and service motion while minimizing strain on their arm.
On the serve to simulate the proper knee bend and hip position,
have players take a service stance and then place a ball by the heel of
their back foot. Once the ball is in position, have them reach down, pick
up the ball and throw it almost straight into the air.
Mark broke the serve into 8 segments of synchronization with three
subcategories. (Preparation) 1.Start 2. Release 3. Loading 4. Cocking
(Acceleration) 5. Acceleration 6. Contact (Follow-Through) 7. Deceleration and 8. Finish. It is interesting to note that the common phrase we
use in the “cocking stage” is “shoulder over shoulder”. However, “hip over
hip” is critical as well. Mark noted that players that do not reach these
two positions on their serve will have ineffective serves and will suffer
from bad ball tosses and will open up their hips too early in the service
motion. Hips and shoulders become parallel to the baseline as opposed
to perpendicular to it. The non-dominant hand is tucked by the waist
at 90 degrees, which is very efficient within the overall service motion.
These deficiencies will result in a loss of power on the serve and erratic
and inconsistent performance.
Stroke Preparation: It is a hip turn, not a shoulder turn. The hips
must turn first on any stroke, the shoulders will follow.
Butch Staples 10U presentation: Have players who are 8 and
under use a continental grip on groundstrokes to start. By using a continental grip players naturally have an open racquet face, which helps
them get the ball over the net, and it helps them get comfortable with
the continental grip.
Relate, relate, relate with the kids. It’s not “use the continental grip”,
its “use your ant smasher grip”. Its not “keep your racquet up as you do
your unit turn”, its “get your racquet to the top of the roller coaster”. Its
not “put topspin your groundstroke”, its “make a rainbow with your
racquet and finish it in the pot of gold”.
Michelle Skelly on using questions: Teach by asking questions.
Having your student answer questions that are tailored to the lesson
correctly, confirms not only that they were listening, but that they
understand. Give them two options to pick the correct answer when
asking younger juniors. However, older junior and adult students must
come up with the correct answer themselves. This teaching technique
will engage the student more in the learning process. Heard around the convention
Eric Wammock Interviewing tip: When interviewing prospective
employees, ask them about their past experiences at former jobs. Encourage them to elaborate on relationships among past employers
and staff. If they have negative comments about most of their employers and staff, a red flag should appear. The common denominator in all
of those work relationships was the employee. I’m not suggesting to
skip this candidate, but you should definitely dig deeper.
Todd Upchurch Hitting Topspin: When teaching the topspin forehand, remind the player to hit like they would a good stock market. Buy
low and sell high and start low and finish high.
Ken DeHart EEE of shot making: Remember the 3 E’s of shot
making. Enter, Execute, and Exit. Many pros work on Enter (getting to
the ball and preparing). Execute (the hitting of the ball), but do not
continue with the Exit. This is the return to a ready position for the next
shot. Unlike golf, the shot is not over once the ball is contacted.
Volume 13 Issue 2
By Matt Grayson
Specials from the vendors from our
tradeshow at the Southern Convention.
HEAD RACQUET AND PRO PENN TENNIS BALLS ARE THE
OFFICIAL PRODUCTS OF THE USPTA! Their financial contribution
to the USPTA helps with many of our programs. Please contact
Linda Ryan, [email protected] for all the latest prices and don’t
forget HEAD PENN has all the QST (10 UNDER) products you need
The Wimbledon Experience: Official Tour company of The
Championships, Wimbledon – complementary place on 2013
Tennis Club Tour programs for PTA Pro’s. Please contact me for full
details. Jan Thwaites, 704-896-2224
The International Tennis Performance Association (iTPA) is
the worldwide education & certification organization for tennis trainers, coaches and specialists who are passionate about
tennis-specific performance enhancement and injury prevention.
The iTPA offers three levels of tennis-specific certification: Tennis
Performance Trainer (TPT), Certified Tennis Performance Specialist
(CTPS) and Master Tennis Performance Specialist (MTPS). Visit the
iTPA website today at www.itpa-tennis.org for more information or
email [email protected]
At NetKnacks Tennis Awards, our mission is to provide you
with exemplary customer service and an array of unique prod-
ucts that will promote your tennis events and programs, helping you reach your goal to grow the game of tennis. From now
through August 15, 2012, we have great deals on summer camp
items such as T-shirts, backpacks, jump ropes, and water bottles.
Visit our web site at www.tennisawards.com or contact us at 800374-6153.
Jobeasier – “We do the things you don’t always have the time,
staff and resources to do”. Drills, Video Clips, Lesson Plans, Camp
Formats, Programs, Handouts plus more and new information
added each month! USPTA discount code: use s-uspta at www.
Esoteric Sports – YOU RECEIVE $400. 23 years of Concierge
level service at world class sports events. Send your clients to the
BNP at Indian Wells and earn $400/couple. Send 10 couples, earn
$5000. Contact us at [email protected] or 800-321-8008
TopDrawer Cap & Apparel – Custom Made Caps for $6.85 each.
The cap includes your logo in 3D Puff or straight embroidery, and a
total of five logos on the cap. Even customize the interior sections,
bill front, eyelet colors, and more. We also have apparel, i.e. moisture wicking polo and tee shirts, wind shirts, fleece and just about
anything else you might need. 678-714-2525
By Eric Wammock, Hilton Head Island Tennis
Get Your Head IN The Clouds
omputer advancements have taken
paradigm shifts throughout the
existence of the machines, but one
interesting shift of late has been the return to
a somewhat centralized computing system
(similar, but still different to the mainframes
of years past) called “cloud computing”. Many
companies such as Google and Apple offer
free cloud services that allow users to store
and, more importantly, share data online for
collaboration. These files can be housed on a
3rd party server, instead of (or in addition to)
being housed locally on your pc. The focus
of this article is the file sharing advantage of
Many of us are still using lesson/clinic books
on paper to schedule activities. Problems often
arise when a student wishes to sign up for an
event and the sign up book is not available at
the moment. Cloud computing lets multiple
users view these sign ups at any time and
changes are saved for all to see in real time. The
customer service element is improved because
students can sign up with any member of the
staff with access to the internet and the file. In
my business at a resort, the reservation staff,
shop staff and tennis professionals all need to
be able to view this information at all hours –
having a single, paper based sign up proved less
than ideal. The owner of these files can grant
access to only those he specifically wants to
view/edit the files and he can also limit files to
view OR edit capabilities.
In our case we created a spreadsheet for
each month of each program. End each tab at
the bottom of the page represents each day
of the month. The spreadsheet is customized
for the information needed for each class and
is uploaded to Google Docs. An e-mail is sent
out granting access to the users, and voila –
they are ready to edit and make changes. In
addition to improved efficiency, paper use
is greatly reduced, which is healthy for both
conservation and the wallet. Time spent
notifying people of changes is contracted, as
interested parties can view the information
when needed. Get out of the hard drive and
into the clouds.
USPTA Invited Guest
Put the Feed in the Player’s Hands
By Ben Hestley
I think that one of the biggest downfalls in the history of our profession is
the fallacy that “if you’re not feeding you’re not working.” A few years ago at the
dawn of the QuickStart format, I ask a fellow pro to try this coaching style with
me with adults and older juniors where the players feed the balls. To say the
least, he was very resistant to getting away from his teaching cart during lessons.
He said to me “the members pay me to feed them the ball.” I replied “well then
they’re paying too much. They pay you to coach them.” Next I ask “do you think
you’re doing the absolute best job you can as a tennis coach?” Of course he
said yes. But take a real hard look. If you feed balls while standing next to your
basket the simple answer is NO! This industry is filled with ball-feeders. We need
If you’re a legitimate tennis professional, you’ll mobilize yourself around the
court to see what’s really going on out there with your players and give them
feedback that is meaningful. Below, I’ve come up with the top ten reasons
you should put the feed in the player’s hands. I’m sure you can come up with
more, but these are the most notable to me and my staff that have incredibly
improved our abilities as coaches and our players’ performances.
1. Allows coaches to be a mobile device
By letting the players feed the ball into play, you’re not “tied down” by the
basket. You’re able to move around the court and get a better view of what
is happening with your players. By moving around the court you’ll see things
from different (and better) angles and you’ll really stay engaged with your
2. Coaches can “touch” each player without completely
stopping the drill
If you don’t have to feed, you can walk behind a player and give a quick “2
minute private” while the other players remain occupied. Most players learn
best through either visual or kinesthetic feedback. When you’re tied to the
basket you can only give auditory feedback during play. Often times between
points I will demonstrate the stroke or guide the player’s hand through a
shadow swing. I will also step in for a few balls and “show ‘em how it’s done.”
3. Easier to see what’s REALLY Happening
Putting the feeds in the players’ hands does wonders in shortening your
job description on the court. Think about all the things you are responsible
for while teaching a group lesson. Organizing the activity, keeping the players
occupied, giving feedback, and you’re going to pile feeding the balls on top of
that. . Why not delegate some of that work to the players so you can actually
COACH them rather than being an over-qualified ball feeder? The best way
to give proper stroke/game analysis is by getting as close to the player as possible and put yourself into their point of view
4. Can only coach from up close
A teaching pro standing far away (on the other side of the net glued to the
basket) can only give quick reminders and encouragement. Players respond
best to congratulations from afar and constructive criticism from up close.
Players will be far more “coachable” listening to a soft spoken, caring voice giving critical feedback close to their ear that appeal strictly to them
5. Coaches can run multiple drills on one court
This commonly happens with juniors and beginner adults as they progress
at different rates once a skill is introduced. Do you let some be bored while
the others “catch up” or challenge each player individually to keep everyone
interested? You split the court into thirds and have them all rallying at the
same time with different objectives based on their skill level; each improving
and enjoying a challenge that is suitable for their needs.
6. Better “private lessons” inside a Group Setting
You’ve probably heard for years as I have from pros “teach the group; don’t
get caught giving a private lesson in a clinic.” But there’s nothing more meaningful to a player than personal attention within a group.. The only way to do
this is let the players feed. You are free to move about the court and spend
time individually with each player; it doesn’t matter for how long (very short
is recommended then move onto the next player) what matters is that you’re
giving them feedback that is specific to their game.
7. Bad Feeds are Good!
Too often as tennis pros, and people in the service business, we’re too
concerned with our drills being pretty, smooth, and seamless. In wanting
that, we underestimate our students. “No way a 3.0 lady could feed the ball to
start a drill. I have to feed. I’m the PRO!” But feeds coming from a player your
student would face in a match automatically makes practices more “game”
like and teaches players how to “read and react” to different type shots before
hitting the ball. Thus, the focus moves to the “whole” of receiving and sending
a ball versus just the “part” of sending a ball, which is what often happens from
a pro’s feed.
8. Can’t Put it in Play, You Can’t Play
Making your players feed the ball to start a drill or a game puts a certain
level of “game-like” pressure on them. In a match, players have that pressure
of putting the ball into play, so why not simulate that in practice? In a match
if you don’t put the ball in play the other team gets a point. Trust me if they
want to play (and they do) they’ll make it happen!
9. Players properly develop racquet skills and Quickly!
Dead ball feeding drills teach players how to “hit” the ball but often lack
skills in “feeling” the ball. By having the players feed the ball into play, they
quickly learn how to “feel” the ball because you force their awareness of the
correlation between racquet face and ball.
10. Makes your drills/games more REALISTIC
With everything you do on the court with players, you must ask yourself
“would this actually happen in a match?” If it wouldn’t actually happen in a
match there is no use in teaching it. To get your players to perform better, you
have to take their practices to the point it resembles a real match. When you
start coaching using the players’ feed concept, your drills will automatically
filter to more realistic match situations. Before developing this system, we had
match players and drill players. The match players were terrible at the drills
and the drill players could master any drill but were terrible in matches. Now,
ALL our players find benefits in our practices because they are doing things
that relate exactly to what they see in a match.
If you don’t already put the feed in the players’ hands I hope I’ve shed some
light on why it is a fantastic idea and highly necessary part of player development. Tthis philosophy stemmed from work with the QuickStart format. If
you’re using a pro no feed policy with six to ten year olds and they are improving, why change the process when they turn 11? I encourage you strongly to
take a true coaching approach to group sessions, get away from the basket,
start circling the court and let your players feed.
Ben Hestley is a USPTA P1 and is the
Director of Tennis at Druid Hills Golf Club in
Atlanta, GA. Ben is the current President of
the Georgia Professional Tennis Association. He has won USPTA Southern Assistant
Pro of the Year and GPTA Director of the
Year. Over the past four years, he has been
a speaker at the USPTA Southern Convention and USPTA Georgia, Tennessee and
We had a fabulous USPTA Southern convention at
the River Club. Thanks to the staff of the River Club
as well as Pat Whitworth and the Southern executive committee for making the
convention such a success. If you were unable to be there, please consider attending the Southern convention in the future. I guarantee you will come away with
information you can use right away to improve your programs and bottom line.
Your students will thank you!!
The Alabama USPTA workshop will take place Saturday, August 18th at Hoover
Country Club from 9:00-3:30. Our outstanding speakers will include Mark Kovacs,
Thay Butchee and Jeff Gray. We will also have a panel discussion as we did last
year in which panel members will discuss how they handle challenging issues with
players and programs. If you attend our Alabama workshop you will leave feeling
energized and with new ideas to try at your club or facility.
In Arkansas news, we were not very well represented
in Atlanta. It was the best, BEST Southern Conference
I have ever attended. Great speakers, great facilities, great fellowship and great
food. I hope when the next one comes around you choose to attend. Travis Johnson and I are trying to put together a state conference in October or November.
We need your input on whether a Sunday/Monday conference would work. Let
me know what you think and who you would like to get for a speaker. We only had
two take the certification test but I had a couple contact me about having another.
If you know someone that needs to test, just have them call me. The numbers are
looking better at some of the junior tournaments which is telling me that we are
doing a better job. Let’s keep it up.
Undoubtedly, USPTA Georgia has had a busy year thus
far. Thank you to all who attended our first event of 2012
– The Georgia Tennis Round Table Discussions. This year we had great dialogue
on the Green Dot ball initiative, 10U and 8U tennis. We also had a Summer Camp
Round Table discussion and finished the day learning about the USTA Adult
League changes with the USTA Georgia Staff. May 7, USPTA Georgia participated in a joint meeting with the Club Managers
Association of America – Georgia Chapter and the United States Golf Association
at The River Club in Suwanee, Georgia. We were honored to have our National
President; Tom Daglis give a State of the Union and discuss the importance of having a certified USPTA pro at each tennis facility.
USPTA Georgia had an outstanding time at the Southern Convention in Suwanee,
Georgia this past May. A big thanks goes to the Convention Chairperson Todd
Upchurch, Trade Show Convention Chairperson Matt Grayson, Pat Whitworth and
Allan Hartley of The River Club for hosting a top notch event. With summer well underway, the Southern tennis community is gearing up to
once again host the Atlanta Tennis Championships. Our local star Georgia Bulldog,
John Isner, is a heavy favorite for the title once again. I hope you will have an
opportunity to attend one of the sessions and support ATP professional tennis in
Congratulations to Megan Falcon who was awarded
the “Rookie of the Year” honor at the recent Southern USPTA convention. Megan had a stellar college career playing for LSU and is
their best all time player in their women’s tennis history! Megan also competed on
the women’s pro tour attaining a ranking in the top 400. Megan has transitioned
into teaching at the Bocage Racquet Club. She also passed her USPTA test P-1 on
her first try putting her in an elite group of pros who accomplish that feat!
We are about to hit the dog days of summer.
While most people are planning trips to the
beach and summer vacations, tennis professionals are hitting their busy time
of the year. I would like to remind all our tennis professionals the importance of
upgrading your certification. Lots of tennis professionals that have established
positions, they will not see the need to improve their rating. Once a new job
opens and tennis professionals start to compete for the position, they learn their
certification level is very important. There are lots of great teaching pro’s that are
a lot stronger than their actual rating. Most employers however use the certification level to compare their initial applicants. When I receive resumes for a position,
I normally classify all the applicants by their rating. Most employers will still
consider lower rated professionals, but always want the highest rated professional
if possible. I travel around the country for testing and always encourage new and
old professionals to upgrade as soon as possible. It might be the difference maker
when looking for that perfect job!
Volume 13 Issue 2
Hope everyone is off to a great summer! We had a
great time down at the Southern Convention at the
River Club in Suwanee, GA. Alan Hartley, Pat Whitworth, Todd Upchurch, and the
staff at the River Club put on a truly remarkable event. There were some great
presentations, good food, gracious attendee gifts, and excellent networking
opportunities, all at an incredible value. If you haven’t been to a Southern Convention, or haven’t been in a while, I highly recommend placing it on your calendar
for next year. Congratulations to USPTA-KY professional Joanne Wallen for being
named 35-under Female Player of the Year.
At the end of the summer we are planning a joint State workshop with Tennessee,
which will be held in Bowling Green, Kentucky on Saturday, August 4th. If you
missed the Southern convention, you will not want to miss out on this opportunity. There will be some great presentations, food, giveaways, and good KY-TN
camaraderie! Look for more detailed information in the coming weeks.
Our state board (Keith Cecil, Joanne Wallen, DJ McClure, and Brett Atcher) are
always looking for more folks to help out. If you are interested, or have any
comments/suggestions email Keith at [email protected] Also, if you are a new
member, or simply would like to receive email updates about USPTA-KY send me
an email and you can be added to the list.
The state of North Carolina was well represented at the recent Southern convention in
Georgia. Current board members, Marc Blouin, Lane Evans, Tom Parkes, Henri
Elkins, and Kevin Brice were all in attendance. Todd Upchurch and Larry Karageanes were also present and guest speakers. USPTA National President and new
North Carolinian, Tom Daglis was also in attendance. We are now busy putting
together our next event. We will be conducting a one-day workshop at the Westwood Swim & Tennis Club in Winston-Salem on Sunday, August 19th. The event
will consist of a morning seminar series or a Specialty course to be determined
later. Lunch will be provided and then the attending pros will participate in an
afternoon Pro-Am with the members of Westwood. Host professional, Mark Troutman will coordinate the event. On Monday, August 20, the USPTA NC professionals
will be on hand to help with the Kids Day event in coordination with USTA NC and
The Winston-Salem Open. Participating professionals will be given complimentary
first round tickets. It should be an all-around great event for the tournament and a
showcase event for the USPTA in North Carolina. Final Kids Day plans and speaker
assignments are pending and will be relayed to Southern USPTA members soon.
We hope to have a great response to this event. Look for details on our website
soon at www.USPTANC.com.
The USPTA South Carolina board is diligently putting together a great workshop for the tentative
date of Sunday, October 7th. This one-day workshop allows attendees traveling
from farther away the option of returning home that evening. This is a great
chance to learn without giving up two days of income. Brookstone Meadows,
in Anderson SC, has been generous enough to host our event. We are lining up
expert speakers who will address a multitude of popular topics such as keeping
your 10 and under program full, fitness training, testing, and injury prevention,
creating and maintaining a profitable cardio tennis program, and an on court drill
exchange. It has been a while, however, this year’s convention is lining up to be a
Despite a few setbacks, South Carolina is back on track with an outstanding board.
Our statewide newsletter is in the making with some great topics and informative
articles. It will be sent out through email in PDF form within the month. We are
working hard to better serve our South Carolina pros!
Greetings from the great state of Tennessee. What
a wonderful time was had by all at the Southern
convention. The River Club was a beautiful site and the lineup of speakers was
second to none. Everyone I talked to said they learned a lot from all the topics and
that the speakers were very personal in their delivery. A special thanks to all the
TN pros in attendance who showed their dedication to their craft: Sue Bartlett,
Claire Bartlett, Mark Foster, Greg Lumb, Brian Perry, Paige Resha, William Taylor, Bill
Riddle, and Joey Hall. TN also had some very successful early development training center camps (EDTC’S) throughout the spring all over the state. USPTA pros
were the pros of choice when it came to coaching these rising stars from the 10
and under ranks. Out of the nearly 30 pros who were chosen to coach at these, all
but 2 were USPTA certified pros. USPTA professionals Bill Riddle and Devin Crotzer
from Hendersonville, TN recently served as guest coaches for the Global Tennis
Legacy Foundation Elite Junior Training Camp in Nice, France. Top junior players
from 10 different countries from around Europe attended the camp and also spent
time with the coaches in Monte Carlo at the ATP event where they had a chance
to meet many of the world’s top players. We are also proud to have Bill back in the
ranks as a USPTA tester once again. Have a great summer!
Rolland Garros was built for the Davis
Cup originally but ended up as the
home for the French Open.
The West Side Tennis Club
New York City
August 19-24, 2012
Girls and Boys Age 8-12
Rolland Garros was a famous French
Military Hero. He was a famous aviator.
Yannick Noah was the last Frenchman
to win the French in 1983. The Stadium was built for the Four
Musketeers who upset the US in 1928
to win the cup. Wimbledon was the last tourney to use
the white ball and in 1986 they went to
the yellow ball. All matches on full court with yellow ball
F E AT U R I N G
and Clinic with the
(Free for all
Volume 13 Issue 2
Fred Burdick - Mtn View Tennis (Club Fred), Dalton, GA
Please give a brief
description of your
tennis career: Started
teaching tennis at
Dalton Junior College
in 1972. Opened a
tennis and jogging
retail shop in 1978,
went to full time
teaching and got my
certification in 1985,
taught for Cobb
County Parks and
Recreation Department from 1985 to
1988, Director of Tennis at Sunset Hills Country Club 1988 to 2002,
been at club Fred ever since. I have been a member of the association
for 27 years, earned Master Professional a few years back, and served
the division as Executive Director for 20 years.
When did you start playing tennis? I picked up my first racquet at age
14 and fell in love with the game. Wasn’t much else to do in Dalton
Georgia in 1959.
What other sports did you play? I played Little League baseball but was
an avid basketball player from the age of 12 to 18.
Who were mentors that helped you develop as a professional? Vic
Braden, Dennis Van der Meer, Randy Stephens, Alan Henry, Tom
What is your favorite shot to teach? The serve. I’ve helped a lot of players with their serve.
What are you teaching right now? I’m working with a junior that just
made cheer leading. I’m trying to make her and her parents understand that in 4 years she will no longer cheer but in 50 years she’ll still
be playing tennis.
What advice do you have for someone starting in the tennis profession?
Invest in yourself. As much as you think you cannot afford to take
time off the court to attending workshops and seminars, it is not an
expense it is an investment in yourself. The benefits are exponential.
What are your hobbies? Fishing and boating. I still like to play but don’t
get a chance much anymore. I’ve taken up Italian cooking recently. I’ve
started my largest garden this spring.
What is your favorite movie? The Godfather
What is your favorite book? “Walking Wounded”. A Vietnam Marine
Corps account of a friend of mine that served with the author during
the Vietnam War.
Are you reading anything right now? Trying to get through “Atlas
Schrugged” by Ayn Rand
What is your favorite magazine? B.A.S.S.
Who is your favorite player of all time? Rod Laver 2 time Grand Slam
Winner. It will never be accomplished again.
What person you would most like to have lunch with? Rod Laver
although I did have a beer with him one time in Atlanta.
What tennis player you would like to play a set with? John McEnroe
What is the first thing you would purchase if you won the lottery? A trip to
Wimbledon and Italy.
What would you be doing if you were not in tennis? I was a court
recorder in the Marine Corps and seriously considered doing that after
I was discharged.
What was your most inspirational moment? I don’t know if it gets any
better than to be inducted into the Southern Division Hall of Fame.
Megan Falcon, Bocage Racquet Club, Baton Rouge, LA
Give a brief description of your
tennis career: I am originally
from Alameda, California.
Grew up playing junior tennis in Northern California.
Competed in numerous USTA
National and ITF Junior tennis
tournaments. Left Alameda
to attend Louisiana State
University in 2005 and graduated in 2009. While playing
collegiate tennis I achieved
a #1 NCAA singles ranking
and was a three time Singles
All-American. In 2007, I earned
SEC player of the year and got
to participate in Pan American
Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. After graduating in December of 2009
I traveled and played on the ITF Challenger Circuit until I started working at Bocage Racquet Club in August of 2011. When did you start playing tennis? Age 6
What other sports did you play? Played basketball and softball until
high school. What moved you to teach tennis? I love the sport and enjoy trying to
help people improve their games. Who were mentors that helped you develop as a professional? My family. What is your favorite shot to teach? Inside out forehand
Do you enjoy working with certain age groups or ability levels more than
others? I enjoy teaching all levels because there are different challenges at each level. Which personality traits are most important for tennis professionals to
master? Lack of self-consciousness, patience, positive and encouraging, curiosity, modesty, value others, and confidence to name a few.
What are your hobbies? Golf, reading, fishing
What is your favorite movie? The Shawshank Redemption What is your favorite book? The Green Mile
Are you reading anything right now? 50 Shades of Grey
What is your favorite sports team? Anything LSU
Favorite magazine? Money
Favorite player of all time? Andre Agassi
First thing you would purchase if you won the lottery: Porsche Standard
Time & Players: 15 min. [1, 4]
Prepared by: InterTennis Coach
Level: Advanced, Competitive
Tennis Organization: InterTennis
Approach to Win
DRILL DESCRIPTION & GOALS
The goal of this drill is to help players recognize the
next correct shot they will execute based on the
bounce of the ball they are receiving.
• Players A and B begin by rallying 4 to 6 balls
• Player B, then, hits a short ball to player A, who
decides whether to drive or slice the ball based on
the height of the ball at contact. He or she must
also decide whether to hit the shot down the line or
attempt a winner crosscourt shot.
• After both players have had a turn hitting the
approach shots, finish the point.
• Play several games of 11 points each.
DRILL KEY POINTS
1. Players should disguise their shot as they prepare the raccquet so that their opponent
2. Balls that can be hit at the height of the net or above should be driven.
3. Balls that can be hit below the net should be sliced down the line.
Type: Doubles, Singles
Time & Players: 20 min. [3, 5]
Prepared by: InterTennis Coach
Level: Intermediate, Advanced, Competitive
Tennis Organization: InterTennis
DRILL DESCRIPTION & GOALS
• The goal of this drill is to practice controlling the direction, placement of the
ball, and hitting an angle off a down-the-line shot.
• The coach feeds the ball from the net in the ad court to player two. Player 2
must change the angle of the ball and hit it down-the-line to player 1.
• Player 1 then changes the direction by hitting the ball crosscourt to player
• Afterwards, the point can be played out to completion.
Rotate positions after 4 mins or keep score to make it competitive. Variations:
1. Coach may start the feed to player three in which case the shot directions are
2. Sequences can be played out with the coach in the deuce court.
DRILL KEY POINTS
1. Shorten the backswing for powerful shots.
2. Baseline players should move in when possible.
Change The Angle
Volume 13 Issue 2
Fit to Hit
Tennis Q & A with Dr. Ben Kibler
By Keith Cecil, MS, CSCS
In this edition of Fit To Hit, we hear from a
leader in sports medicine, who has a special
interest in tennis. Dr. Kibler is the Medical Director of the Lexington Sports Medicine Center.
He serves on numerous boards including the
Sports Science Committee of the USTA and is a
founding member of the Society of Tennis Medicine and Science. Dr. Kibler is also a fellow and
former Vice President of the American College
of Sports Medicine. Dr. Kibler has published and
presented internationally in all areas of sports
medicine. However, his professional interests
include shoulder surgery, the upper extremity,
shoulder pathology, scapula, acute knee injury
surgery, sports medicine, and arthroscopic surgeries of the knee, shoulder, ankle, and elbow,
and the biomechanics of tennis.
The elbow is more affected by bad mechanics
and muscle weakness in other parts of the body
than most joints. Proper mechanics of the stroke
will decrease extra strain on the tissues, and
maximizing strength and flexibility in the kinetic
chain, especially the shoulder and trunk, will
decrease the applied strain at the elbow.
BK: Back injuries are difficult, because the
trunk is so important in every tennis move.
Any injury there means that running, hitting,
rotating, or bending is tough. Most back injuries
need rest and therapy to get better- they can’t
be “played through”, which means the player
needs to take sufficient time off to let them heal.
Question: In your opinion, who has the
most efficient serve on the professional tours
(men’s and women’s) that is effective as a
weapon to help win points and why?
BK: Male-The best serve motion and most
effective server ever- Pete Sampras. The best
current serve motion and most effective serverRoger Federer. Female- Current best serve
motion and effective server- Serena Williams.
Question: Is it true that you can strengthen
the muscles and ligaments around the knee
to prevent injury?
BK: You can strengthen the leg muscles and
help to prevent injuries. However, you also
need to strengthen the hip muscles. They are
the base for the leg muscles, and increasing
their strength also allows maximum leg muscle
strength. They should be strengthened as a unit.
Question: What is the “hot topic” in tennis
that you have come across recently?
Dr. Ben Kibler: There are many to choose
from. From an injury standpoint, wrist injuries
are getting more attention. These usually occur
due to improper stroke mechanics. On the
dominant wrist, extreme western grips put
more pressure on the wrist just before and
during ball impact, causing overload injury.
On the non-dominant wrist, poor cocking in
the two-handed backhand (when the trunk
and non-dominant arm are not in full cocking),
causes the wrist to be “hyper cocked”, generating extra pressure on the wrist.
Question: What are some of the major
mechanical problems you see in tennis?
BK: Serve- Not using the ground to push off
with the back leg, not rotating the hips away
from the service line in cocking, not tilting the
back hip downward in cocking. These all mean
that it is difficult to put maximum force into the
serve, and decreases the ability to go “up and
through” the ball in the motion and put topspin
on the serve.
Ground strokes- Not rotating the trunk well
into cocking, meaning that the player needs to
use the arms more to hit the shot. Arm muscles
are smaller than trunk muscles, requiring them
to work harder to perform the shot.
Question: If you could give 1 piece of
advice to a junior tennis player, what would
BK: Good mechanics of shot production. Use
the legs as the base of support and engine for
generating power, not the arms.
Question: What tennis injury do you find
to be the most easily preventable, and how
do you prevent it from occurring?
BK: Elbow injuries are largely preventable.
Question: What are some of the most difficult injuries for tennis players to overcome
Question: If you could give 1 piece of
advice to an adult tennis player, what would
BK: Keep your entire body in shape. Emphasize core strength, flexibility of the trunk, hip,
and shoulder, and muscle balance around the
hip, trunk, and shoulder. Also, “warm down”stretching and flexibility after the match or
I hope you enjoyed this edition of Fit to Hit.
Special thanks to Dr. Ben Kibler and the Lexington Clinic Sports Medicine Center.
What I Learned at The Suwanee Convention
By Lane Evans-USPTA NC Board
Our recent USPTA Southern Convention at Suwanee CC was a spectacular event. Those who were not fortunate enough to be there missed a great
event that was filled with some of the most knowledgeable tennis people
in the entire country. We are also very fortunate to have our National
President right here in the Southern Division. Tom Daglis, the Director of
the Professional Tennis Management Program at Methodist University, has
a resume that is far too expansive to list here in this short article. However, I
did reach out to Tom for this issue’s “Success Secrets” and in typical fashion,
he took time out of his busy schedule to share some ideas he has come
across of late that will certainly impact all of us. At a recent graduation
ceremony, he heard Bill Gates share the following suggestions:
1 “Life is not fair, get used to it.”
2. “The world won’t care about your self-esteem. The world will expect
you to accomplish something BEFORE you feel good about yourself.”
3. “If you think your teacher is tough, wait till you get a boss. He
doesn’t have tenure.”
4. “If you mess up, it’s not your parents’ fault. Don’t whine about your
mistakes, learn from them.”
5. “Life is not divided into semesters. You don’t get summers off and
very few employers are interested in helping you find yourself. Do
that on your own time.”
Here are a few personal thoughts that Tom had to share:
1. “Do what you say and say only what you do.”
2. “Network in the industry. Get involved on committees within the
USPTA and USTA.”
3. “Invest in yourself with education. It is what separates most successful people.”
4. “Be an expert on something. Spend 10 hours per week on it and
within 3 years you can call yourself an expert.”
5. “Do your best to return phone calls and e-mails within 24 hours.”
6. “Spend some time watching other successful tennis professionals.
How they teach, how they interact with their clientele, how they
motivate and how they run their businesses will tell a lot.”
7. “Be the first one to show up and the last one to leave.”
8. “Volunteering to do the grunt/small tasks will be remembered more
than the big ones.”
9. “Err on the side of conservative, professional and formal.”
Volume 13 Issue 2
The Ladies Southern Committee met
during the Southern convention in Atlanta
Georgia this past May. The objective of the
meeting was for women teaching professionals to share experiences and ideas
specific to our profession. 7 women were
Mariona works at a resort in North
Carolina. She sees a different crowd every
week. We encouraged her to push a cardio tennis program at her facility because
players of different levels can have a blast
together. Since she doesn’t know the
level of the players visiting her facilities, a
cardio tennis class or even a family cardio
class would be a hit!
Lucia expressed how much she enjoys
watching her students in all aspects
of competition from adult leagues to
junior tournaments. Lucia explained how
through taking the time to watch them
compete, she establishes a rapport with
her students, has new ideas on what to
teach them and the money it generates is
just icing on the cake!
Some of the women present were
former tour players and showed lots
of on court confidence. Some others
expressed concerns in the perception of
their playing ability by the consumer.
I’ll tell you what, I have seen inadequate
male players who were amazing teachers.
They project an energetic voice, they put
together great lesson plans and activities
for their students and they have the ability to relate to the players. I’m convinced
that there is much to say about teaching
By Joanne Wallen and
Dr. Sophie Woorons-Johnston
abilities and people skills. If you are an
outstanding player, that’s fantastic, use
it to your advantage, if not, there are lots
of qualities students (and employers!) are
looking for that go beyond playing skills;
Organizational skills, punctuality and
reliability, energy, drill management, pace
of the lesson, quality of the feedback,
encouragements, giving a great work out,
voice and enthusiasm… Remember, players don’t care how much you know, they
want to know how much you care!
Ladies, if you are looking to get more
involved with the USPTA, we would
love to have you write an article for our
newsletter, speak at one of our State
Conventions, or be part of our women’s
committee for the USPTA Southern!
We look forward to hearing from you!
To get involved, contact Joanne Wallen
at [email protected]
The “Standard” is the official newsletter for the
Southern Division of the United States Professional Tennis Association.
Bill Phillips - 337-849-5821
Keith Cecil - 859-608-4640
1st Vice President
Todd Upchurch - 704-258-7220
Ed Gaskell - 225-924-6273
2nd Vice President
Sophie Woorons-Johnston - 864-202-1917
Kevin Jackson - 662-840-3528
Matt Grayson - 678-898-2904
Marc Blouin - 919-876-0565 x101
Executive Director/ Past President
Pat Whitworth - 800-438-7782
Kevin Theos - 205-790-7256
Jimbo Hobson - 501-835-9793
Joey Hall - 865-531-5038
Tommy Wade - 256-341-4948
Andrew Minnelli - 770-368-7040
USPTA Welcomes Our
Kincheloe, David L.
Battle, Graham T.
Helms, Nathan T.
Munroe, Ian H.
Melancon, Benjamin M. Baton Rouge LA
Hampton, Jason C.
New Orleans LA
Dempsey, Phillip R.
Pawleys Island SC
Craig, Glenda H.
Turner, John E.
King, Bryan A.
Rock Hill SC
Ware, John K.
Fariss, Danny L.
Wilson, Matt D.
Varela, Joshua R.
Martin, Tory G.
Tests & Upgrades
“Being positive doesn’t necessarily come naturally. We have to make that
decision daily.” -Joel Osteen
“Impossible is not fact, only an opinion.”
“Do not pray for an easy life, pray for the strength to endure a difficult one.” -Bruce Lee
“The bad news is time flies. The good news is you’re the pilot.” -Michael Althsuler
“It›s easy to make a buck. It›s a lot tougher to make a difference.” -Tom Brokaw
7/8/12 Myrtle Beach, S.C.
The Dunes Golf & Beach Club
7/14/12 Anderson, S.C.
Brookstone Meadows Tennis
7/22/12 New Orleans, La.
Metairie Country Club
8/5/12 Louisville, Ky.
Owl Creek Country Club
8/11/12 Atlanta, Ga.
Dunwoody Country Club
8/18/12 Gastonia, N.C.
Country Club of the Carolinas
8/25/12 Nashville, Tenn.
Williamson County Tennis
9/9/12 Hilton Head, S.C .
Haig Point Club
10/13/12 Atlanta, Ga.
Dunwoody Country Club
10/20/12 Fayetteville, N.C.
USPTA SOUTHERN DIVISION
337 Rhodes House Court
SUWANEE, GA 30024
The Standard is published every 60 days by the
Southern Division of the United States Professional
The opinions expressed in The Standard are those of
the authors and not necessarily those of The Standard,
the USPTA or Southern Division.
Copyright© The Standard/United States Professional
Tennis Association, Inc. 2012. All rights reserved.
Reproduction of any portion of the newsletter is not
permitted without the written permission from the
USPTA Southern Division.
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