Podcast Episode 83: Is the Practice Court Broken?

Episode 83 of the Tennis Abstract Podcast features co-host Carl Bialik, of the Thirty Love podcast, and guest Jeff McFarland of Hidden Game of Tennis. This week we dip our collective toe into a debate in the tennis coaching world.

With rallies short and aggressive, should players be using practice time differently? What types of skills can still be improved, once a player has reached the top? What tactics can a coach teach their charges, and which ones are too deeply ingrained in the physical nature of hitting the shots? The line between technique and tactics may not be a clear-cut as we think.

Is a 3- or 4-shot rally qualitatively different from a 5- or more-shot rally? How would you teach Madison Keys to retain the positives of her aggressive style while dialing back the aggression a bit? We offer more questions than answers, which seems appropriate for a topic that is far from settled, and is likely to remain controversial for years to come.

Thanks for listening!

(Note: this week’s episode is about 67 minutes long; in some browsers the audio player may display a different length. Sorry about that!)

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