The 2013 Vida Tennis Australian Open Camp was enjoyed by fifty kids aged between 10 and 15 from all across Victoria. It was great to see each individual get so much out of the three days and from all at Vida Tennis, we look forward to seeing you on the court soon. Below is a recap of each session, some of the highlights and pictures;
DAY 1 – THURSDAY 10th
After an overview of the camp and introduction to some of the presenters and coaches the kids all hit the courts for live ball hitting focusing on direction and depth, with the 90 minute session finishing with some point play. The second session of the day saw the group split in half with two work through two different themes.
The nutrition session was taken by Ola Luczak (pictured below), an Accredited Practising Dietitian from Pakenham Family Health. Ola also has a keen interest in tennis, playing college Tennis in the USA and being the sister of former top 100 ATP player Pete Luczak. The session gave the kids an overview of how to fuel their body for tennis, from the night before, during matches and after matches.
The second sessions was an court Video Analysis of ground strokes (pictured above). Vince took an overview on the white board of the key principals and then all kids has their forehand and backhand filmed and reviewed so they could go back on court and implement some of the findings. Players more often than not learn better through visuals, so it was interesting to see many of the kids had never seen themselves play.
After a lunch break we started the third session for the day which was split up into three rotations, the first was further Video Analysis on the Serve and the second was Net Play and Volley Technique.
The third rotation was fitness testing and benchmarking taken by Dr Matt Bonadio from Mt Waverley Chiropractic Centre. Matt also has a Masters in Exercise Science and has worked with elite footballers and tennis players. The session saw the kids do a variety of testing activities which they were then compared to the norms and best of tennis playing kids in Australia. Each child then received a certificate with their results and comparisons on the last day. Some of these tests included, 5m sprint, 10m sprint, 20m sprint, change of direction, standing jump and beep test.
DAY 2 – FRIDAY 11th
Day 2 was an early start and with temperatures expecting to hit 40 degrees, our first topic was timely. Ola Luczak was back to take all the kids through Hydration testing and sweat rates. The kids had to weigh in, without shoes & socks, at the start of their on court session with their drink bottles.
Everyone was then on court for an intense one hour movement session which focused on end range movement and moving forward into the court. The use of the body through the shot and movement around the court is so important in the modern game as things continue to speed up the older the kids get. Effective and efficient movements were the key focus in the session. After the session all the kids weighed back in with the drink bottles again after wiping themselves down and Ola worked out each individuals sweat rates and gave them an indication of how much they need to be drinking and when. Each child went home with their individual results.
The second session of the day the group was broken into two again with the focus being Live Ball Game Style Tactical Awareness. Off the court, kids went though a white board session and watch video clips of professional matches on the following topics; court position, recovery position, approaching net, serve and return direction, cross court V’s down the line, change of direction and more. The on court session was their chance to put this into action.
After a quick lunch break the group got on the train from Glen Iris and headed to Melbourne Park to watch some Australian Open Qualifying. During our time there we had many highlights and great speakers;
- Damien Prasad meet the group at the front of Melbourne Park and shared a couple of his experiences about working on tour with players such as Ana Ivanovic, Nicolas Kiefer, Nadia Petrova and his current top 20 WTA player Julia Georges. Damien also spent many years with AIS Tennis.
- We watch long time Vida friend Marco Chiudnelli come back from a set down when we arrive to win his second round match in three sets. One of the boys from the camp, Marco, got his shirt signed underneath his name which was printed on the back. Marco is pictured below after playing long time friend Roger Federer. Unfortunately Marco lost his last round qualifying match the next day 11-9 in the third set after having 5 match points.
- The group took over the Hot Shots court and ended up having it filmed and played on the big screen at garden square. Vida Coach Angelo started with just a few of our kids and ended up having more than 50 people in a line wanting to play. Click here to watch the clip
- Anthony Rocca from the Collingwood Football Club spoke to the group about his experiences going from junior football into a 250 game AFL star and now into coaching.
- John Aloisi, current coach of Melbourne Heart and former Australian Socceroo captain shared his experience of kicking the goal to put Australia in the World Cup and many more stories of his days in the EPL and Spanish League.
Above is the entire group with coaches, Rocca and Aloisi.
DAY 3 – SATURDAY 12th
The kids returned for the last day of the camp ready to play after a full day of training and watching tennis at the Australian Open. There were three themes for the morning session, Technique review, Match Play Singles - Compete and a session from Dane Barclay from the Performance and Sport Psychology Clinic (pictured below left). Dane’s session was fantastic with the kids getting some great advice and practical knowledge to help their game.
After the morning break the group went into Doubles Tactics with the focus being on court positioning and bring your partner into the game.
The Lunch break saw parents invited along to hear a presentation from Blair O’Hara on the pathway of US College Tennis (pictured below) with many of the old kids in the group staying to find out where tennis could take them. The presentation gave valuable information on the; what, how, where and when’s and also highlighted the do’s and don’t's of the process. A couple of the Vida Team coaches, Justin Raiti and Aiden Fitzgerald have returned to Australia after their college tennis experience and study.
The last session of the camp was broken into two theme, Singles Match Play and a Fitness Session from Dr Matt Bonadio (picture above)following on from his testing on day 1. During this session kids went though some running technique to help improve their speed and movement, core stability and some injury prevention exercises rotations.
After the college tennis session the parents received a quick overview about a great web site designed to help sporting parents and kids performance. Sportsparentsupport.com has been developed by Anthony Ross, a former professional tennis player and leading sports psychologist. It was a great discussion and now parents of the kids on the camp will be given access to the four video chapters on the site to give valuable information on how to best support their child.
The camp concluded with a short Video Analysis overview for the parents and kids from Vince.
From all the team at Vida Tennis we thank you those players and parents who attended the camp and hope you had as much fun as we did. Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or feedback. There are more picture available on our Facebook Page.