How much do tennis coach’s make

How much do tennis coach's make
  • Anywhere from $30,000 – $100,000 depending on experience. Top elite tennis coach could make over $1 million.
  • Head tennis professional or director at a prestigious club can potentially earn six figures a year.
  • Experience, qualifications, geographical locations and what type of classes they teach play a significant factor.

   Your Guide

Gavin Davison   Gavin Davison

Since I have personally worked as a tennis coach for a number of years in the past, I feel I am qualified to answer this common question.

For a direct answer, I’d have to say that it depends on:

  1. Where the coach is based
  2. Their Skill Level, and
  3. Their CLIENTELE

For example, a coach in the USA will generally be paid much more than a coach in the UK, and of course, this then varies throughout the world too.

I’ll be breaking down all of the factors that impact the EARNINGS of tennis coaches right now, so let’s get started.

Factors impacting a coaches earnings

Qualifications

Different countries have different coaching qualifications available. However, almost all jurisdictions will base a coach’s earning potential on their qualification level.

Here in the UK, a coach can be anything from a level 1 to a level 5 coach, and I know that this is quite different in the USA.

Basically, the more that a coach INVESTS in their career, meaning the more they rise through the ranks, the more they can charge. 

After all, there are only so many hours one coach can work in any given week, so the more they charge per hour, the more they will obviously make overall.

Experience

This is a big one in tennis coaching, believe me.

You could be the most qualified coach in the world, but if you’ve never worked at big clubs or managed to create decent players, you won’t have a whole load of CREDIBILITY.

Of course, experience also relates to how long you have been in the game. Although I have to admit, this is a bit of a pet peeve of mine!

I’ve seen plenty of coaches within the first 12 months of their career display more APTITUDE than coaches that have been in the game for 20+ years.

I’ve also seen coaches who weren’t great players prove to be fantastic coaches – just look at Richard Williams!

And I’ve witnessed amazing players really struggle with coaching. It all depends on the individual, but the more experienced and the better the CV, the more a coach will make.

Geographical location

As I’ve mentioned previously, the country that a tennis coach works in also impacts how much they will make.

I used to work as a tennis coach in the USA, specifically, New York.

Of course, this is quite an AFFLUENT part of the country, and indeed the world.

So naturally, tennis coaches can charge quite a premium for individual and group classes here.

However, if I was to coach tennis in South Carolina, just as an example, I would have been paid around half of the money.

So as you can see, not only does it depend on the country, it depends on the REGION of the country also.

Coming back to the UK, in the North, I know of tennis coaches that will STRUGGLE to make more than £25,000 per year.

But in London, coaches can easily make more than £40,000.

You’ve also got the costs of living in various places that impact this too, but I won’t run into that in great detail.

What classes they primarily teach

As a tennis coach, there are two ways of teaching the game.

You can either teach private lessons, or you can teach group lessons.

The former is where a tennis coach makes the most money, mainly because you are then supplying the client with your undivided attention for one hour.

This is the best way of learning and advancing your skills in the game, in my experience, so naturally, the costs involved are higher.

As an example, back in my teaching days in New York, I could charge as much as $100 for a one-hour individual class, at a private home.

But here’s an interesting one, if you receive 100% of the PROFIT from a lesson, sure, private lessons are the way to go.

But should you do group classes, where a client might be $30 each, and you’ve got 8 clients on the court, you are suddenly making $240 for one hour?

However, this isn’t always the case – as discussed in my next factor.

The club tennis coach work at and the structure

A tennis coach’s position at a club is one of the biggest factors of them all, as this usually dictates the cut received from lessons and classes.

I can use my own example again here to highlight this. I was classed as an assistant professional at my club, so while an individual lesson with me was $90, I would only receive $40.

Away from the club, I could charge $100 and receive all of it.

But if I was the director of the club, I could charge $90 and receive the whole thing, while BENEFITING from working at a club with a guaranteed flow of clients.

In terms of group classes, should you be anything but the head pro or a director, you will receive less than the private lessons.

Maybe a group class is bringing in $240 for the club, but if you’re an assistant professional, you will probably get around $30 or $35.

Hopefully, you can see the ENORMOUS IMPACT that a coach’s position in the club has on their earnings!

My conclusion

Is tennis coaching a good career?

I believe so. You certainly won’t get a better office!

Being OUTDOORS and running around a court all day is much better than being sat in a chair for 40 hours a week.

But in terms of their earnings, in certain parts of the world, the annual income might meet the national average or be a little higher.

If the coach is particularly ambitious, however, and they strive to become a head pro or a director at a PRESTIGIOUS CLUB, it’s not at all uncommon for a coach to bring in an income that is well into the six-figure range.

These jobs can be hard to come by, and they aren’t a walk in the park by any means, but hey – it beats an office job in my opinion!

Did you find this article useful? Are you now more aware of what a tennis coach actually makes? Let us know down below!

How to volley in tennis

How to volley in tennis
  • Use your legs to be explosive, contact the ball infront of you and angle your racket face correctly.
  • The best volleys have always stuck to the fundamentals and execute these fundamentals to perfection.
  • Keeping things simple will help you out in a big way!
  • Hitting a great volley isn’t overly complicated, and that’s the way you should approach the shot.

   Your Guide

Gavin Davison   Gavin Davison

Some tennis pundits say that volleying is a dying art in the sport. Sure, the days of players serving and volleying are long gone, but I believe hitting a good volley is still a critical part of the game.

Of course, to hit a great volley you need to have good hand skills at the net.

And while the focus is very much on baseline play these days, if players can pick the right time to get to the net and execute a volley well, they will be EFFECTIVE on the court, period. 

As a matter of fact, while many people love this man for his baseline play, Nadal is actually one of the best there is at picking the right time to come to the net and put his volley away.

Sure, hitting a volley naturally means you have less time to react, since the ball is coming at you with speed, but MASTER THE ART, you will be a better tennis player

How is this done? Well, read on and I’ll show you!

Three tips on hitting a better volley

Use your legs to be explosive

Loads of players think that to hit a great volley, you’ve got to swing WILDLY at the ball to get any pace. I

can tell you from experience that this isn’t the case.

In fact, if you do try and swing wildly at the ball, you will have a much tougher time trying to hit it correctly, and there is a better chance that you’ll stick the ball out or in the net.

Obviously, this isn’t what you want to happen.

Instead, it’s much better to maintain a low center of GRAVITY, bending your legs, while using them to spring towards the ball – while using the continental grip, of course.

Just imagine that there is a V on the COURT in front of you.

You need to go out and meet the ball while using this V-shape as your guide, and the only way to do this is by using your legs.

Not only that, but the forward momentum of your body is what will generate the pace, which is something that many players fail to understand.

Contact the ball in front of you

This tip is usually given for all tennis strokes, but I feel that it isn’t emphasized enough on the volley.

To give yourself the best chance of TIMING the ball correctly, as well as giving yourself a better shot at directing the ball where you want it to go, you’ve got to catch the ball in front of your body.

But don’t be confused here, I’m not saying you need to contact the ball one foot in front of yourself.

Instead, it’s better to keep the elbow tucked into your hip if possible, and then go out to meet the ball using your forearm to push forward. 

This is how you can maintain the STRONGEST position when contacting the ball too.

Any further than this and your racket face may start to wobble on contact, which makes things pretty tricky indeed. 

Angle your racket face correctly

Here is another element where players tend to get a little confused. That’s because a lot of players think that the volley needs to be hit flat, but to be an effective volleyer, the volley needs to be hit with a bit of spin.

Specifically, you need to cut the ball to CREATE a little bit of backspin, otherwise, the ball will spring too high off the court at the other side.

To do this, you need to

  1. Open your racket face
  2. Prepare the racket head above the ball (not level to it), and then
  3. Slightly CUT DOWN on the ball as you punch the volley.

You will see an instant improvement if you can master this third tip, and perhaps most importantly, your opponents will have a harder time hitting a passing shot beyond your reach at the net.

One of the all-time greats at the net, in my opinion, is Tim Henman.

And you can get a direct lesson from Tim on how to hit the best possible volley in the video below:

The best volleyers right now

Roger Federer

Federer does plenty of things well, and volleying is certainly one of those things.

Not only is his feel around the net absolutely incredible, but his technical abilities when volleying are FLAWLESS.

He angles his racket face perfectly, he chops the ball well to get that bite into the court, and he uses his legs to get the necessary pace.

I would highly advise checking out some of his volleying videos to see what I mean!

Daniel Evans

Daniel Evans comes to the net much more often than other top ATP players, and why not?

His volleys are FANTASTIC.

What I love about his volleying is that he

  • Keeps things so simple, with a nice punch on the ball
  • Good use of the body, and
  • He chooses the RIGHT times to come to the net and put pressure on his opponent. 

Stefanos Tsitsipas

Many people rave about Tsitsipas for his HEAVY groundstrokes and athletic abilities, but his volleying is definitely underrated.

In my opinion, he is one of the best at hitting transition volleys to set himself up, and then his putaway volleys are top-drawer too.

Since he has this option at his disposal, on top of his heavy groundstrokes, I have no doubt that he can be a future champion of the sport.

So while people might say that volleying isn’t as important as it used to be, I beg to differ, as it’s a great skill to master and have in your ARSENAL to come forward and close out a point.

Feeling more confident with hitting a great volley? Let us know your results in the comments.

Why are tennis balls fuzzy?

Why are tennis balls fuzzy?

   Your Guide

Gavin Davison   Gavin Davison

Have you ever stopped and marveled at a tennis ball?

Okay, you might not look at one the same way you might look at a celebrity or some athletic SUPERSTAR, but they’re still pretty cool.

I often wonder about the actual manufacturing process of tennis balls, and how people ultimately decided to follow the structure that tennis balls have today.

Tennis balls actually have a really interesting history, moving from just a rubber sphere, which was white, to the bright and vibrant balls we see today. But one question has always bugged me, as it may have you as well.

Why are tennis balls fuzzy?

After all, footballs aren’t fuzzy

Cricket balls aren’t fuzzy

Rugby balls aren’t fuzzy – you get the idea!

Having done my research, I found some INTERESTING answers that I’d like to share with you.

Main reasons for the fuzz

Durability

I must admit, I’ve had this in the back of my mind prior to writing the piece, but research confirmed my suspicions.

One of the top reasons behind the outer FUZZ on tennis balls is durability.

The more fuzz on the ball, the longer the ball will last, in theory.

That’s why I love playing with Slazenger Wimbledon tennis balls, as they are super fuzzy, have a great feel to them, and they last forever!

Other balls, not that I will throw any brand under the bus, do not achieve the same results – mainly because they are less fuzzy.

Court responsiveness

One of the main objectives of brands that supply tennis balls is to make them as RESPONSIVE as possible. I

n short, if the balls didn’t react well off the court surface, rallies wouldn’t last very long, and the game of tennis certainly wouldn’t be much fun to watch or play.

The outer layer of fuzz is one of the secret weapons behind this, as the fuzz helps to absorb the impact on the surface, and it provides a bit of a ‘spring effect’.

Of course, this is helped by the pressure and rubber sole of the ball too, but the fuzz does play its part.

Spectator viewing

I must admit, this was one of the most interesting things I found when conducting my research.

If you watch any tennis games up until 1972, you will see that the ball is actually WHITE.

Since the 70s were also a time where important tennis matches started to be broadly televised, a complaint started to file through – ‘WE CAN’T SEE THE BALL!

Believe it or not, fans who were watching the game on TV, and in the stands too, were influential in the color change to the yellow ball we see today.

Some clever manufacturers quickly figured out that rather than changing the entire process of making a tennis ball, they would simply add some YELLOW FUZZ.

This allowed the mass production of tennis balls to continue, without any form of delay, and spectators all around the world became much happier

Reaction off the strings

If you were to strike a tennis ball that didn’t have any kind of fuzz on it, the feel would be rather dull.

After all, if you PEEL away the felt, or the fuzz, you are simply left with a hollow, rubber ball.

Now, given that tennis strings have evolved to such a point where strings are now hexagonal, among other shapes to grip the ball, if a ball had no fuzz this would make the technological improvements null and void.

So, when you get a nice bit of fuzz on a ball, this actually helps by gripping the strings, sinking into them as the ball then CATAPULTS down the other side of the court.

The less fuzzy balls definitely don’t have this kind of feel.

I can even remember playing tournaments as a junior where the organizers had chosen to purchase cheap, non-fuzzy balls for the event.

Sometimes it would be a struggle just to keep the ball in the court, and that’s because you couldn’t easily place a spin on the ball due to the lack of responsiveness.

Differences in tennis balls

Clay court

Up until 2020, the most prestigious clay-court event of the year, Roland Garros, used Babolat balls.

These balls were ideal as they had less fuzz for a greater response off the court, creating a chance for players to have longer RALLIES and play real clay-court tennis.

In the 2020 event, Roland Garros switched to Wilson balls, much to the annoyance of Rafael Nadal.

These balls were reportedly heavier, as well as less fuzzy, but besides the players’ opinions, clay court balls are always designed to have a thinner layer of fuzz.

Hard court

Hardcourt tennis is the most common form of the game, and the balls you can use vary quite WIDELY for such play.

Since hard courts naturally react quite well to the ball, there is no need for balls to have reduced fuzz, otherwise, the court would be too LIVELY.

Then again, you don’t want a ball that is overloaded in fuzz, as then play would be too slow.

That’s why the Wilson US Open ball is perfect for hard court tennis, and this is actually the ball we used to play within NCAA tennis – which was solely hard court!

Grass court

The grass-court season is incredibly short, with just a few weeks of action each year.

And since grass courts are by far the least responsive of all tennis surfaces, the balls need that EXTRA layer of fuzz to get some bounce going on.

Sure, the greats of the grass game still try to overcome this by hitting flat through the court, but without this extra fuzz, I’m not even sure that grass-court tennis would exist – not at the highest level anyway.

Without the fuzz, I don’t believe that the quality of rallies would be as good, watching the game wouldn’t be as easy or enjoyable, and if you wanted to speculate a bit – the sport wouldn’t be what we know it as today. 

Has this information answered your question? Are you feeling more knowledgeable about the purpose of fuzz on tennis balls? Let us all know down below.

What is an ace in tennis?

What is an ace in tennis?
  • A tennis ace is when a legal serve squeezes past the opponent without them touching the ball.
  • Roger Federer is known for being the best spot and he does this by focusing on accuracy.
  • Hitting an ace in tennis doesn’t require amazing skills and unreal talent, but it is difficult, clearly.

   Your Guide

Gavin Davison   Gavin Davison

The serve is one of the most important parts of tennis. It’s the ONLY shot that you have 100% control over, and if you’re serving well, I usually find that the rest of the game follows.

Serving well also simplifies the game.

If you can keep the scoreboard ticking over by holding serve easily, it MOTIVATES you, yet deflates the opposition.

With this said, the best reward you can get when serving is to hit an ace. A serve is classed as an ace if it is hit and squeezes past the opponent without them even touching the ball. 

Now, there are many ways to do this, but you have to execute the serve perfectly to stand a chance of scoring an ace.

I’m not the tallest guy in the world, nor do I have an ENORMOUS serve, but I do know how to effectively hit an ace. 

How to hit an ace – my top tips

To AVOID painting a picture that hitting an ace is a walk in the park, I’d like to say that this isn’t the case.

It is possible, however, of course, and if you follow the tips provided here you might have a better time of things:

Pick your spots

By far and away, Roger Federer is the best ‘spot server’ there has ever been.

He isn’t the BIGGEST guy, and it’s fairly rare that he manages to get his serve North of the 130mph mark.

So how is it that he hits so many aces when he plays?

Well, the answer is ACCURACY.

He is able to find the corners of the box and the edges of the line with amazing regularity, and this is what gets him so many aces in a match.

This is also what allows him to hold serve so easily, for if the opponent manages to get the ball back, he then has an easy GROUNDSTROKE to take advantage of.

Analyze your opponent’s position

This isn’t so much of a factor at the very PINNACLE of the tennis game, but at the lower levels, this is absolutely a factor to think about.

Whether playing singles or doubles, most coaches will advise that you stand in the corner of the court where the singles line meets the baseline.

This avoids leaving too much space down the middle, or out wide.

But sometimes, you might find that your opponent starts to edge towards the middle or more towards the alley. This is done when they want to PROTECT their weaker side, which for many players, is their backhand side.

If you do notice this, there will be a bigger gap towards their stronger side, and if you can serve big or HIT your spot, it is very possible to grab an ace this way.

Contact the ball as high as possible

This is more of a technical element regarding hitting your best serve possible, but it is still relevant for hitting an ace.

If you’ve received coaching in the past, you will know that you are supposed to MAKE CONTACT with the ball with your arm fully extended.

But while most coaches will emphasize this, they won’t tell you why.

And I always like to add another tip to this, which is to TOSS THE BALL in front of you so that you can snap your wrist over the top of the ball.

But coming back to the high contact point now, basically, the higher you hit the ball the more downward motion you can put on it.

This will increase your power on the serve, and speed in itself can lead to plenty of aces – just ask John Isner!

It’s always worth noting that you should really try to DRIVE your legs upwards to the ball, which adds a few inches to the contact point. 

Add some spin to your serve

If you hit a flat serve, sure, this is going to be the FAST POSSIBLE serve you can hit, but it’s not always the most effective.

If you can get the ball moving in the air and get plenty of reaction from the court when the ball lands, this will make things pretty tough for your opponent.

I like to always add a bit of slice to my serves unless I’m trying to really hit it as hard as possible up the middle of the box.

Slicing the ball also makes it SKID through the court, which makes it difficult to time the ball for the returner.

Players to emulate

I couldn’t finish this piece without giving you some homework!

Now, there’s a fair chance that most of you reading this aren’t pushing 7ft tall, so I won’t be talking about Isner or Opelka here.

Instead, I’ll be talking about guys who TRULY MAXIMIZE their serving potential, and you can follow their examples to add to your own serve.

Roger Federer

Come on, I had to include the GREAT man!

Federer has one of the smoothest serving motions you are likely to see in your lifetime.

As soon as he releases the ball, he bends his legs into the court, getting a great DYNAMIC position, and he always makes contact with the ball well in front of his wrist.

Check out his serve in the video below:

Dominic Thiem

Speaking of people who MAXIMIZE their game, Thiem is the perfect example.

The exertion this man puts into every shot is remarkable, and of course, this includes his serve.

What I love about Thiem’s serve, however, isn’t necessarily the technique – it’s the MOVEMENT he gets on the ball.

This is especially true with his second serve, which he kicks into the box and gets plenty of response from the court.

Felix Auger-Aliassime

Auger-Aliassime is a rising star, there is no doubt about it.

This was proven in his recent run to the US Open semi-final, and his serve is one of the key shots that helped him get to that position.

He uses his legs to great effect, adds slice and topspin to the ball to mix things up, and his weight transition is borderline perfect. 

Now that you know what an ace is, what BENEFITS hitting aces can have, and how you can boost your chances of hitting one…

…I feel you are ready to get back on the court and put what you have learned here to good use. 

Do let us know if any of the tips and advice given here helps, and I’d love to hear your individual stories in the comments. 

When to start tennis lessons?

When to start tennis lessons?
  • When you feel ready and motivated, start taking tennis lessons as soon as possible.
  • Don’t just run through the motion; you’ll be wasting your money.
  • For Children, their Attention Span, Tennis Goals, Interest in other sports and Social Aspect plays a major factor.
  • For Adults – Income, overall tennis goals and accessibility is an important consideration.

   Your Guide

Gavin Davison   Gavin Davison

Ah, the memories!

I first picked up a tennis racket when I was eight years of age, SWINGING violently at a sponge ball and barely making contact.

Believe it or not, I was one of the later starters at my local club. Other kids had already been hitting balls around since they were 4 or 5, so you could say that I was a little late to the party. 

With that said, you can obviously start playing tennis at any age, including in your adult life.

I’ve coached players that only picked up a racket for the first time in their 30s, and some were even later than this.

But specifically for TENNIS LESSONS, it depends, is the short answer.

Perhaps the best way for me to answer this question is to break this into two groups – Children and Adults.

Determining factors – children

a) Attention span

For me, this is a big one. This was particularly apparent when coaching a group of six 3-year-olds.

The parents were PAYING decent money for their toddlers to come and learn the game, but at that age, to put it bluntly, it’s glorified babysitting.

With that said, kids mature at different rates.

While some 10-year-olds may STRUGGLE to maintain focus for a one-hour tennis session, some 7-year-olds might concentrate for 2 hours.

So as I say, it depends on the child, and you should observe your child’s average attention span before enrolling them in the right class. 

b) Tennis goals

This might be a little difficult to comprehend for children, but as a parent, you could ask questions to your child to see what they’d like to do with their tennis.

For me, it was easy, as a 10-year-old, I knew I wanted to be as good as I could POSSIBLY be.

Therefore, for my parents, they felt it justifiable to get me started with individual lessons, within their financial capabilities, of course.

But for some kids, they might just be looking to have FUN.

In this case, it’s better to get them started with group lessons, where they will socialize and make friends.

c) Interest in other sports

For young children, I’m a firm believer that they should TRY and PLAY as many different sports as possible – both boys and girls.

This is a great way for kids to assess what sports they actually like the best, and their enthusiasm towards each sport will usually serve as a pretty good indicator as to whether they want to PURSUE it or not.

For example, if you see that a child loves football, and they go to the pitch every week with a big smile on their face, it’s safe to say that this is a good sign.

But if they drag themselves onto the tennis court with a FROWN, it might be time to pack the lessons in and explore other areas.

d) Social aspect

I might not be a parent myself, but I know that friendships are CRITICAL for a child’s growth and happiness.

In fact, this is true for adults too, with socializing having many health benefits on physical and mental health.

But specifically for this area, if you feel that your child will meet other kids with similar INTERESTS, it could be a good time to check out some local group sessions and see what’s available.

Determining factors – adults

i) Your income

While kids only need to worry about getting to the court and having fun, as adults, we have a few more responsibilities to worry about!

Tennis is an EXPENSIVE sport, there is no hiding it, and lessons do come at a cost.

Individual lessons are naturally more expensive than group sessions, but if you want to improve your game as quickly as possible, this is the best way to go.

However, regardless of what tennis lessons you choose, you have to do the math and make sure that you can afford it.

ii) Overall goals with tennis

This is easier to assess as an adult, and of course, we all have our own goals and AMBITIONS with the game.

If you simply want to improve your level, and you’re not overly bothered about your rate of improvement, group classes will be perfect.

But if you want to maybe RAMP things up a bit and start to compete in tournaments or local leagues, locking in a blend of groups and private lessons is also a good option.

But just to stress once more, it’s important to ensure that your decisions line up with your current financial situation.

iii) Accessibility

In short, if the nearest tennis lessons offered are miles away, then it might not be FEASIBLE for you to take classes, period.

However, if you have a local club with a decent coaching team, then it’s clear that tennis lessons are accessible in your local community.

One thing I would advise is to check out the coaching team and see what kind of background they have.

If you live in or near a BIG CITY, you might be spoiled for choice regarding what clubs and coaches are around, which means you can be picky.

But if not, it’s even more important to do your homework and find the right coaches to help you improve your game.

My conclusion

Although I’ve discussed many factors regarding when to START lessons, there is one thing that should determine your personal choice.

For me, you should only start tennis lessons if you feel ready and motivated to do so. 

These two elements have to be present, for if you feel capable and ready to take lessons but might just be running through the motions, you’ll be wasting your MONEY.

But if you are chomping at the bit to take lessons, for any reason, make sure you take the opportunity and get started as soon as possible.

The sooner you start, the sooner your game will improve, and the sooner you will feel great satisfaction with how you can play the game! 

I’d love to hear your own thoughts on this. If you’ve anything to add, do share it in the comments below. 

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