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May 30, 2008

4 corner drill

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Lee Couillard, USPTA, Head Tennis Professional, Punahou School, Honolulu, Hawaii demonstrates the 4 corner drill. This is one of the best movement and footwork drills for the game of tennis.

May 28, 2008

YouTube Lesson

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Lee Couillard, USPTA, Head Tennis Professional, Punahou School, Honolulu, Hawaii gives Luis, from Venezuela a lesson on the forehand. Luis uploaded a video of his forehand on You Tube and sent me the link. Luis has a strong forehand and only needs to add a couple of things to make his forehand a major weapon. At the 2.5 - 3.5 level, it is important to develop topspin as most players at that level have difficulty handling balls above the shoulder. That is precisely why I teach the loop backswing to to 3.5 players and below. The object of the game is to make your opponents play short through using spin, depth and pace. Currently, Luis is primarily using pace with the end result being too many balls landing in the net.

Luis will have to add an open/semi-open stance and experiment with a semi-western grip. The height of the follow through is important. The harder and flatter you hit the ball the lower the follow through. The higher the net clearance, the higher the follow through. Presently, too many balls are landing in the net.

Concentrating on developing a loop backswing will add consistency and spin to his game and will cut down on errors. The loop backswing is the "Perfect Storm." However, one must develop the timing and rhythm necessary to create this powerful and effective stroke. Currently, there are too many errors and not enough long rallies in the baseline-to-baseline rallies. It is important to never warm up down the center of the court for more than five minutes. Immediately after the warm up, one should step outside to the alleys to begin crosscourt rallies. This will develop better angles, depth and pace.

In this video, I have concentrated on two areas I would like Luis to work on: footwork and a grip change.

May 25, 2008

Alligator eyes

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Lee Couillard, USPTA, Head Tennis Professional, Punahou School explains a concept known as "Alligator Eyes." He attended a 2 day Alexander Technique workshop held at Punahou School where he learned this concept plus many more to help with peak performance. The Alexander Technique is of particular use to performing artists, athletes, actors, singers, dancers, musicians, and martial artists.

Some well-known people who have studied the Alexander Technique include George Bernard Shaw, Aldous Huxley, Robertson Davies, Paul McCartney, Sting, Paul Newman, William Hurt, Robin Williams, educator John Dewey, and Nobel prizewinner for Medicine Nikolas Tinbergen. For more information about the Alexander Technique, please visit the Alexander Technique website.

May 22, 2008

Dennis Lajola forehand

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Dennis Lajola- #1 Singles player, University of Hawaii

2007-08 (Freshman):

Selected Western Athletic Conference Freshman of the Year and named to the all-WAC first team...posted a 9-5 overall record and dual match record primarily at the No. 1 position...went 7-5 at No. 1 and a perfect 2-0 at No. 2...during dual match play, wins included those over players from No. 18 Florida State, No. 33 Arkansas, No. 66 UC Irvine, No. 49 Fresno State at the No. 1 court...named the WAC Men's Tennis Player of the Week for the week of Jan. 14-20., which included a win over No. 68 Sam Chang of No. 18 Florida State in straight sets, 7-5, 6-3...went 8-7 overall in doubles play...teamed primarily with Jeff Fitch at the No. 2 position to go 8-4.

Prep:_A 2007 graduate of Isabella Colleges in the Philippines...also recruited by Florida State, Louisville, and UCLA...captured the Oceanic Time Warner Cable Honolulu Futures, a USTA Pro Circuit event, last November...ranked No. 9 in the Boys' Class of 2007 according to tennisrecruiting.net...posted personal-best junior Grand Slam finish, at the 2006 Australian Open advancing to the boys' round of 16 in singles and quarterfinals in doubles...won the boys' 16 doubles title and reached the singles semifinals at the 2005 USTA National Championships in Kalamazoo, Mich...was one of eight boys invited to participate in the 2004 Davis Cup Training Camp held during the Davis Cup first-round match between the U.S. and Austria...captured the boys' 14 doubles title and reached the singles semifinals at the 2003 Easter Bowl...member of the U.S. team that won its second consecutive title at the World Junior Tennis Championships in 2003.

Personal:_Born Feb. 2, 1989, in the Philippines...major is undecided...has one older sister, Tiffany, and two older brothers Darryl and former Rainbow Warrior and current women's tennis assistant coach Derrick...parents are Dado and Chato Lajola of Aiea, Oahu.

May 14, 2008

Wheelchair Champs of the Court

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Paul Yu volunteers every Tuesday night at the Ala Moana Park Wheelchair Tennis program. He provides guidance and instruction to new and veteran wheelchair players. Once a competitive junior player, Paul returned to tennis 10 years ago as a recreation player and could be found playing regularly at Ala Moana Park tennis courts. Searching for something that didn't revolve around himself, he decided to get involved with the USTA wheelchair tennis program that took place on the courts beside him. The timing was perfect since the former wheelchair tennis coach was unable to continue and Paul was ready to step in and give back to the game that was a big part of his life as a youngster. Along with his basket of balls, Paul brings passion and patience to the courts. He meets the challenge weekly, encouraging his students while understanding their limitations. He is rewarded each week when players return to test their new confidence and abilities. Paul is particularly proud of one student, 13 year old Shelby Baron who has numerous match wins as a wheelchair players among able-bodied players in the USTA Junior Team Tennis program.

May 10, 2008

Age Limit Myth!

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Lee Couillard, USPTA, Head Tennis Professional, Punahou School, teaches the windshield wiper forehand to a student 75 years old. There is no age limit to learning the windshield wiper forehand. John is the perfect example of how easy it is to learn this motion, even at the age of 75!

May 4, 2008

Pin Point Stance

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Lee Couillard, Head Tennis Professional, Punahou School interviews Jim Osborne Jr., '69 Grad, Punahou School . Jim was a former Davis Cup Player. Interview Part 2. In this video, Jim discusses the pin point stance on the serve and how he copied Arthur Ashe to learn this service motion.

Hawaii's greatest tennis players was a late-bloomer, Punahou graduate Jim Osborne Jr. had many interests in high school, but once he made up his mind to pursue tennis, success was his. The U.S. Tennis Association from 1968 to 1970 ranked him among America's top ten singles players. In doubles competition he was ranked in the top ten eight times. He was Hawaii's first player to compete at Wimbledon, and the first to be named to the U.S. Davis Cup team. He defeated the world's best players during his career, including Arthur Ashe, John Newcombe, Roy Emerson, and Stan Smith. Him made eight appearances at the U.S. Open. In 19966 he also became the first Hawaii athlete to compete in any sport at the Madison Square Garden in New York. But despite all of titles, Jim was not the winningest player in Island history. That title goes to his mother Muriel, who by 1971 had over two hundred trophies!