Go Beyond Tennis Coaching Basics

Champaign, IL— Tennis is thriving: Over the past five years tennis participation at the high school level has increased more than 10 percent each year, and total participation is over 14.5 million in the United States alone. Written for high school coaches, Coaching Tennis Technical and Tactical Skills (Human Kinetics, June 2009) guides coaches through basic to intermediate tennis skills in a comprehensive manner. Written by the American Sport Education Program (the leading instructor of coaches with over 1.5 million trained coaches in its ranks) in conjunction with the United States Tennis Association (the largest tennis organization in the world), this book is the practical resource that will help high school coaches improve their coaching.

With more than 150 photo sequences, Coaching Tennis Technical and Tactical Skills takes a progressive approach to teaching young players the game of tennis. It begins by showing how to evaluate each player’s skill level and moves directly into demonstrating the technical skills that every player needs in order to excel on the court. Technical skills are carefully examined, teaching coaches not only proper skill performance but also how to detect and correct errors associated with each skill. Some of the skills that coaches learn include the ability to teach powerful and accurate ground strokes with a variety of spins, service and service returns, and guidelines for successful volleys and overheads.

The book goes beyond the technical skills by providing tactical skills for singles and doubles play that can lead to match success. It gives coaches the tools to explain why players need to hit offensive and defensive ground strokes from the backcourt in game situations and how to approach the net to hit winning volleys or overheads. These and other tactical skills are broken down so that coaches can convey the cues their athletes need to focus on in order to make appropriate decisions during match play. All the skills are cross-referenced so that coaches can find the appropriate topic for use in practice situations.

For more information about ASEP coaching resources, visit


Coaching Tennis Technical & Tactical Skills
Available June 2009 • Paperback • 272 pp
ISBN 978-0-7360-5380-8 • $21.95


Kirk Anderson, who is the United States Tennis Association’s director of recreational coaches and programs, started playing competitively when he was a sophomore at Parchment High School in Parchment, Michigan, a suburb of Kalamazoo. He attended Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo and graduated with a major in physical education.

Kirk spent 12 years as a club professional in Michigan in Holland, Battle Creek, and Kalamazoo and one year as a resort professional in Hawaii. Along the way he returned to Western Michigan University and earned a master’s degree in exercise science. In the mid-1980s, Anderson joined the Midwest Tennis Association and became the schools director in Springfield, Ohio, where he remained for six years before moving to Atlanta to work for Penn Racquet Sports as its promotions manager. He then joined the United States Professional Tennis Association as its director of education, a post he held for two years before coming to the USTA in 1996 as the manager of the Play Tennis America program.

But throughout his journey within the tennis industry, this premier tennis teacher has never stopped learning. Kirk is one of only a handful of tennis teaching pros worldwide who are designated as master professionals in both the Professional Tennis Registry and USPTA. And Anderson’s goal to become the best tennis teacher possible was recognized in 2003 when the International Tennis Hall of Fame honored him with its Tennis Educational Merit Award.

Anderson, who lives in New Fairfield, Connecticut, frequently is a featured presenter, both on court and off, at industry conventions. And he is one of the codirectors of the USTA Tennis Teachers Conference, the annual gathering held at the beginning of the US Open that attracts hundreds of teaching pros from the United States and around the world. In 2006 the TTC drew nearly 750 attendees, the largest number since 2001.

Kirk also is in charge of the on-court activities for the yearly Arthur Ashe Kids’ Day, which takes place at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on the Saturday before the US Open begins. In 2005 more than 33,000 kids attended the event. In his role as USTA director of recreational coaches and programs, one of Anderson’s key initiatives is the Recreational Coach Workshops (, which involve parents and other volunteers in teaching and coaching players at the recreational level. This national program, presented in cooperation with the United States Professional Tennis Association and Professional Tennis Registry, offers training to help develop recreation coaches.

Both the PTR and the USPTA praise Anderson for his leadership in the QuickStart Tennis format that uses slower balls, lower nets, smaller courts, shorter rackets, and modified scoring for children ages 10 and under.

The United States Tennis Association (USTA) is the national governing body for the sport of tennis and the recognized leader in promoting and developing the sport’s growth on every level in the United States, from local communities to the crown jewel of the professional game, the US Open.

Established in 1881, the USTA is a progressive and diverse not-for-profit organization whose volunteers, professional staff, and financial resources support a single mission: to promote and develop the growth of tennis.

The USTA is the largest tennis organization in the world, with 17 geographical sections, more than 750,000 individual members and 7,000 organizational members, thousands of volunteers, and a professional staff dedicated to growing the game.

The American Sport Education Program (ASEP) is the leading provider of youth, high school, and elite-level sport education programs in the United States. Rooted in the philosophy of “Athletes first, winning second,” ASEP has educated more than 1.5 million coaches, officials, sport administrators, parents, and athletes. For more than 25 years, local, state, and national sport organizations have partnered with ASEP to lead the way in making sport a safe, successful, and enjoyable experience for all involved. For more information on ASEP sport education courses and resources, call 800-747-5698, visit, or look inside this book.


Part I Teaching and Evaluating
Chapter 1 Teaching Sport Skills
Chapter 2 Evaluating Technical and Tactical Skills

Part II Teaching Technical Skills
Chapter 3 Foundational Skills
Chapter 4 Strokes and Shots

Part III Teaching Tactical Skills
Chapter 5 Singles and Doubles Tactics
Chapter 6 Offensive Tactical Skills
Chapter 7 Defensive Tactical Skills

Part IV Planning for Teaching
Chapter 8 Season Plans
Chapter 9 Practice Plans

Part V Match Coaching
Chapter 10 Preparing for Matches
Chapter 11 During and After the Match


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