Not sure if anyone noticed (or missed) the lack of posting for the last couple of weeks. My “excuse” is that we had family visiting; but there is a tennis pointer from my hitting with my two grandsons.
The 3-year old is a natural athlete and will stay in the driveway and try to hit the foam ten-and-under tennis balls with no problem. But when I was on the court with my six (soon to be seven) year old, he was not focusing and just spraying the balls onto the next court.
He is a highly competitive youngster and I remembered his father telling me that “he needs goals to focus on what he is doing.” So I said, “Lucas, our goal is for me to feed you balls and for you to get three in a row over my head and into the court.”
His demeanor immediately changed; and he got focused on accomplishing “the goal,” which he did.
I find the same with many of my “adult” tennis friends. A good half of them do not want to “just practice” and hit balls back and forth. If they do agree to practice (many won’t even do that), they frequently need a drill game in which we “keep score” to help maintain their focus.
Perhaps my makeup is different. I can focus and get satisfaction out of “the process” of trying to hit the correct stroke repetitively. Agreed, keeping score does add pressure and makes you try to perform “under pressure.”
So perhaps it is a combination of both that is the best way to learn and improve. Isn’t that what is all about?