Friday, November 7, 2008

60 kids on a tennis court- definately a challenge

Part of my role for Tennis South Canterbury is to deliver a schools program.We cover a large area of South Canterbury during the week and a total of 16 schools are on board this year with increased numbers at participating schools confirming the popularity of the program.Thursday for me is a very challenging day coaching wise, I start at the center in Timaru at 7-15am for a early 1 on 1 lesson then depart along with assistant coaches Andrew Van Rooyen and Hector Garcia ( a truley international team , I am Australian, Andrew ,South African and Hector ,Mexican)and leave for Lake Tekapo where we have 24 keen juniors.We are on court from 9-15 to 10-15 and pictured right are some of the Tekapo participants.After finishing its a drive back to Fairlie and on court at St Jo's Fairlie where we have over 45 students,I leave early to organize Fairlie Primary and its a total of over 65 smiling kids ready to participate in their skill of the day when the other coaches arrive.After Fairle primary 30 Mackenzie college students are put through their paces.We then make our way back to Timaru but not before we stop at Albury School where around 20 students are waiting for us, very keen.I'm back at the center in Timaru by 3-30 for normal lessons and finish at 7-30pm for the day.During the day I have driven a total of 210 klms . The secret in dealing with large numbers is to maximize participation, entertain and keep the session fun and moving along .This year we have had a great start to the season and although a challenge its made easier by having a successfull background in coaching.I would say this type of coaching is a skill that one can only get by experience and a "hands on approach" to coaching and managing groups of this number. Pictured below are Juniors left St Jo's Fairlie and right Fairlie Primary.

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