By Ricky Becker
I find it funny how so many of my tournament players refuse to take time off. I get looks like, "Huh? Are you crazy"? Name me a sport, professional or otherwise where the athletes participate 52 weeks (or however many weeks there are) a year. Pro tennis players are always clamoring for a break from...Read more
By Steven Kaplan
With the back to school season fast approaching, Long Islanders should be proud that they have a collective ideal which emphasizes the value of education, and as a result, some of the finest schools in the world. So it's back to school in September, EXCEPT for a select few of the best young players...Read more
By Ricky Becker
As my 2nd year coaching the USTA/Eastern Intersectionals Team started, I expected a similar experience as last years. Last year's team finished 5th out of 17 sections and everybody was into the team-concept. They welcomed a coach who was anal about team meetings and being organized. This year's...Read more
By Eric Meditz
Over the last year and a half, I’ve been writing a column in this magazine that I’m sure you have all been reading called “My Opinion.” During that time, I’ve given my many strong views on all things involving the sport of tennis. From “crazy tennis parents” to “who is the greatest to ever play the...Read more
By Steven Kaplan
The steadiest player I know, never misses, never complains, and unless someone else has gotten there first, is always available. Of course I'm talking about a wall. Walls are undervalued practice partners. I think many players don't consider seeking out practice against the wall for two reasons...Read more
By Ricky Becker
Let me start out by saying I am very proud to be an American. However, my trip to the 14's clays in Fort Lauderdale left a heck of a lot to be desired. Granted, nobody's perfect and there was one coaching situation I wish I handled differently but between the behavior of the players, officials,...Read more
By Jason Wass
So far this summer is one of the hottest I can remember. We have had 3 "heat waves" in a matter of 3 weeks and temperatures have regularly been in the 90's. Do yourself a favor and drink 3 or 4 glasses of water AT NIGHT before you go to bed, this keep you from dehydrating early the next day,...Read more
By Steven Kaplan
The mission of the USTA is: "To promote and develop the growth of tennis." In the local area, we can now add, "To promote and develop the growth of its junior development program" and the first step in this growth is to promote an extensive free program. The USTA is now in the junior development...Read more
By Jason Wass
I just got home from watching the NY Sportimes v. Boston Lobsters featuring James Blake. Now I realize that it is always nice to go to an event where big names are playing, but this is good tennis. More so, its a fun, family friendly atmosphere that should be supported by anyone and everyone in the...Read more
By Ricky Becker
For starters, every child is different and unique. However, as a baseline, the USTA has done a comprehensive study on world class players and what level tournaments they played as juniors. What they came up with is that a player has the most long-term potential if they have a 2:1 win/loss ratio...Read more
By Steven Kaplan
While watching the Wimbledon Men's Final between Rafael Nadal and Tomas Berdych, I heard NBC broadcasting legend Dick Enberg ask John McEnroe about a comment made by Andy Murrey after his semifinal loss that "Nadal's ball just feels so heavy on my racket." "What?" Enberg asked, "does that mean?"...Read more
By Ricky Becker
Not Important For Getting Better In A Drill Group: 1) Exclusively playing with better players - When a parent says their child wants to be in a group that is stronger than their level, this tells me that the child wants to artificially feel like he/she is stronger than he really is or maybe the...Read more