Thursday, May 21, 2015

Marco Bitran: Private Tennis Lessons Versus Classes


When someone thinks about playing tennis, the first thing that comes to mind is tennis lessons or classes. The student is thinking instruction and usually in the cheapest means possible. There are two options for every new tennis student: take a beginner private tennis lesson or join a tennis class for newbies.

In a tennis class, the student will travel to the club at the pre-set times and follow the pre-set syllabus for the class. The pace of the class will be dictated by the average progress in the class, and 70% of the time the student will be sitting in line waiting to hit the ball. The amount of time spent watching other students play will generally exceed the total amount of personal playing time.

In a private lesson, the student is able to progress on their own time. The amount of hitting time is maxed out, because the student doesn't have to wait for others to hit the ball before they can be first in line. Additionally, other students who may not be "getting it" will not be slowing down the learning progress of the student.

Tennis requires a lot of patience and practice. It is vital that every student get as many hits on the ball as possible. The more hits each student get, the better the student will become. Unfortunately, the class setting does not provide the dial amount of practice for a newbie without several sessions.

Private lessons typically cost more than classes. They can cost anywhere from $30 per hour to $100 per hour. On the other hand, classes can cost anywhere from $15-60 per hour.

When looking at lessons, you also want to make sure that the instructor not only has tennis playing experience but also has tennis teaching experience. There are several certification agencies such as: PTR and USPTA and USPA. Ask your instructor if they have any of those certifications. Instructors typically pay a fee, take a test, and then instruct in front of an association professional to ensure their skills, effectiveness, and professionalism.

If you do the math, in order to get the same cost per time hitting the ball, the class would have to ensure that at least 50% of the time, the student would be hitting the ball and have individual attention. While the classes may be cheaper, the private lessons are far more effective in getting beginners to master the basics in a timely manner.

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