Coaching Structure

Although the current Coaching Structure works very well I feel it might be helpful to lay out the various levels with an explanation as to what each is about and how to progress to the next level upwards. The following Levels apply to all areas of tennis from Under 8’s to Seniors.

1) Introduction and Participation – this is fairly self explanatory in that players who have never played before can have a go via our Holiday Courses or Come Along to the Club. The participation Sessions are a follow on where typically players might only want to play Once a week. Coaching is given and fun games are plenty and a basic understanding of the game is applied by the coaches.

Touch Tennis – the latest tennis innovation sweeping the Nation is basically Mini Tennis for Adults and Older Juniors. Sessions at the Leisure Centre 1-2 pm on Thursdays

We will soon be introducing Cardio Tennis – this is a fun filled active Aerobic Workout  using the the Court and Equipment.

2) Development – for those who want to Learn the game more fully these sessions start dealing with the more Technical Issues involved in Tennis together with Tactical, Mental and Fitness aspects of the Game. Players in this category would be recommended to Join the Tennis Club so that Court time becomes more available to practice and to have a go playing internal Box Leagues to test themselves also Join the British Tennis Membership scheme to see what’s going on in Tennis Locally and Nationally.

3) Team and Competition – By now this Level of player will have played a few matches in the Box Leagues will have a British Tennis Membership Number ( All match results are tracked via this number) and a basic Rating will have been applied to that Player.  Team Selections will be based on Numbers of players available, their Rating and also Willingness and Desire to want to play. A players Rating can be improved by playing as many tournaments as possible and getting as many wins as possible. Ponteland has always done well in competitions and the players always compete in a fair and sporting manner which is my approach to the game and is the way I would expect Team Players to represent the Club.

The other important aspect of playing Team matches and Tournaments is from the Feed back point of view to the Player and the Coaches as it helps define the Areas where improvements need to be made.

A Mini Red Player (U.8s) would start as a Red 4 and progress to Red 1 – at which point that player could get a passport to play Mini Orange (U.9’s) competitions. The competition structure is strongly regulated and the main benefit is progression at the right pace

A Junior player with a starting rating of 10.2 should soon progress to 10.1 and up to 9.1 within 18-24 Months and would probably be playing Grade 4 Tournaments. Once a player progresses beyond 9.1 and is starting to get into the 8’s and 7’s rating bands access to grade 3 and 2 tournaments becomes more available. the Advantages here are that more points are available for wins and Ratings and Rankings can increase much more quickly also because the Competition is stronger it develops better players. Players at this level will probably also be needing individual Coaching Sessions – Speak to Nick about this.

Ponteland also has Close links with the Northumberland HPC (High Performance Centre) and supports the Talent ID Process to progress players to that Level.

4) Elite Performance – The top level of Player wanting to take the game seriously and will have a Junior U.12 Rating of 7.2 or Higher, U.14’s – 6.2 or Higher,   U.16’s – 5.2 or Higher and U.18’s and Seniors 4.2 and higher.

At this level players will be training at the HPC Having regular individual lessons, fitness training, mental coaching, diet advice and be playing and training 7 days a week and will have a very Personal Training Programme written for them, whilst trying to maintain a good education standard at school.

Some players at this level are thinking of going to College in America to play and get a degree, whilst others will look forward to being full time Tournament Players.