How I Learned the One-Handed Backhand (And You Can Too!)

one-handed backhand

The following is a personal story of when I decided to switch from a two-handed to a one-handed backhand.

But first, I want to take you back to the time I started to play tennis (at the age of 12)…

I was a skinny boy with weak wrists and forearms. 

I barely had any control of my forehand, but my two-handed backhand was the main shot that I could rely on even when playing against older and more powerful players.

For many years, I had trusted the backhand more than any other tennis shot.

Later on, with the help of my father, who was willing to feed balls to me from the basket, I began to develop the forehand in order to catch up with my strong two-handed backhand.

My father would feed hundreds of balls every day to my forehand until I started feeling equally confident on both sides.

But then…

Years later, when I became a tennis coach, I realized that I needed to hold a few tennis balls in my non-dominant hand as I was rallying with my students, and so I decided to…

…”teach” myself the one-handed backhand… with which I fell in love from the first day.

It was not hard because I followed a series of progression drills that really helped me to understand the point of contact, the body balance (which is different than that of the two-handed backhand), and, of course, through a lot of repetition, I developed the timing necessary to hit the ball early.

The progression drills that I followed to learn the one-handed backhand are the same I use now to teach many students all the tennis strokes. 

And I put them all inside the WebTennis24 program which you can have full access to:

ULTIMATE TRAINING FOR TENNIS PLAYERS – learn and master the one-handed and two-handed backhand groundstrokes, and more

Tennis is easy if you break it down into small tasks and put in the time to practice them.

Have fun learning or teaching this sport!

Cosmin Miholca

Cosmin Miholca

Certified Tennis Coach

Check out my work at WebTennis24 where I share with you my best video tennis lessons, drills and tips for players, coaches and tennis parents.

I Play THIS Tennis Game Once a Week (Friendly Competition)

play singles tennis game

I want to share something with you…

A solution to playing competitive tennis and enjoying your time on the court…

You see, I know this junior player whom I coach once in a while (don’t have time for full-time coaching these days). She is a 17-year-old who LOVES tennis.

That’s why I agree to play and practice with her once a week.

But, as much as she would like to play matches and see whether she can beat me or not, I came up with a game that suits us both: she gets to play competitively against me, and I get a good workout and practice my strokes.

It goes as follows:

We play a tennis game that continues until we decide to put a stop to it. 

There is no score. 

I serve for two points, she serves for two, alternating. We play every point out, but do not count it.

In this way, we play competitively, but do not keep track of the score. 

No egos involved, no frustrations when missing a shot…

We just have a good time playing tennis, enjoying every point, learning from mistakes, and improving our tactics based on the decisions we make. 

You can try this too. With your tennis partner(s).

It is a good way to play competitive tennis without the pressure of winning or losing. You will practice your strokes technique, get a good workout, and work on your match tactics in a relaxed way. 

Try it and let me know how it goes in the comments below.

Cosmin Miholca

Cosmin Miholca

Certified Tennis Coach

Check out my work at WebTennis24 where I share with you my best video tennis lessons, drills and tips for players, coaches and tennis parents.

Why I Decided to Teach My Daughters Tennis

tennis coach teaches his daughter

Do you consider that every tennis coach has a duty to introduce their children to tennis? Even if only to teach them the basics so they can enjoy it later with their friends?

These were questions I was asking myself as my baby daughters were turning 4 and 5 years old. 

Many days and nights had I thought about it: what if they didn’t like tennis? Is there a social expectation from a tennis coach to have his children pick up the sport he likes so much? 

I was young and did not have answers to those questions…

One of the biggest thoughts that I could not shake off was the one that eventually made me decide to take this step and introduce my daughters to tennis:

“Would I forgive myself after 20-30 years if I did not teach them to play tennis?”

No, I would not. 

And this is how I got my daughters started with this sport. 

There is more to this story, but I have to keep it short – 

My daughters began with group classes so they could see other kids enjoying tennis, and only after they got a taste of this sport, they asked me to be their coach. 

It was not easy because my daughters have strong personalities. And they “knew better than me” how to hit the ball and would not accept anybody telling them how to do it. 

Even though their father was a tennis coach…
They knew tennis better than I. 🙂

Teaching your kids is not an easy task, but it would give a parent great satisfaction seeing them grow in the sport, become competitive, and learn to work hard to develop their skills… not to mention the hours you spend with them on the court is just… priceless.

So yes, I did manage to teach my two daughters to play tennis and we did this process together for 9 years. 

Best part?

Occasionally, my wife would record some of their lessons. 

If you want to see how I did it, and learn the techniques, the games, and the ways I interacted with my daughters on the tennis court, you can watch the whole 9-year process in this WebTennis24 section called My Daddy / My Coach.

Was it easy, was it hard? 

It does not matter. 

The time I spent with them on the court during all those years is just precious. 

If you are teaching your children or intend to do it soon, I am here for you. 

I’ve done it, so I know what you are going to go through. 

If you want to take a peek into our lessons, this Potato Race tennis game which my two daughters loved so much, can give you an idea of what it takes to teach your children not only tennis but any sport.

Cosmin Miholca

Cosmin Miholca

Certified Tennis Coach

Check out my work at WebTennis24 where I share with you my best video tennis lessons, drills and tips for players, coaches and tennis parents.

Do NOT Copy the Pros!!

playing tennis

It was 2003… the year I earned my tennis teaching certificate.

Despite my playing experience and theoretical understanding of teaching tennis, there were still so many gaps in my knowledge about how to actually coach people.

My students were all unique individuals – each with their strengths, weaknesses, and personalities.

As a young coach, it took me a while to learn that I had to adapt to every single student I encountered.

Once I became a certified tennis coach, I assumed that the methodology I learned from this esteemed tennis teaching organization would provide me with a “one-size-fits-all” formula that would suit every student that entered my tennis court.

I was wrong!!

Only when I learned that people are unique and they each had to be approached according to their personality, did I begin improving as a tennis coach.

Tennis is not a one-size-fits-all sport.

You were born with certain personality traits which are reflected in the way you strike the ball, the way you move, and the way you make decisions on the court.

skilled coach can help you discover the basics of how to play tennis in a way that complements your own unique playing style.

Don’t try to be like the pros!

Be yourself and play tennis in your own way…

The way that feels right to you.

Cosmin Miholca

Cosmin Miholca

Certified Tennis Coach

Check out my work at WebTennis24 where I share with you my best video tennis lessons, drills and tips for players, coaches and tennis parents.

Serve Problem – This Is How I Fixed It…

Here’s how I fixed the serve problem of one of my students.

This particular lady used to take lessons with me a couple of years ago.
She called me on a Wednesday afternoon saying that she was lacking consistency and did not know what was the problem with her serve.

We met the next morning after my usual 8:30-9:30 am class, and after she warmed up, I made a few steps away and looked at her while she was delivering most of her serves long, just a foot beyond the service line. Over and over…

I soon noticed the problem:
She was releasing the ball very early and then lowering the tossing arm right away.
This caused a loss in balance and low contact with the ball.

So here’s what I did to fix her serve consistency within a few minutes…

I asked her to continue serving focusing on one thing only: keeping the tossing arm up and extended towards the sky after releasing the ball until she sees it coming down.
She got her balance back and made contact a lot higher.
The result: more power and… more serves landing inside the service box.

There are a few technical elements that players need to be aware of in order to deliver the serve with consistency and power. These elements can make a big difference in someone’s game.

If you want more information about tennis technique, or drills for consistency and accuracy, as well as tactics and strategies for winning against different tennis opponents, you’ll find all this in the WebTennis24 Training section.

If you are a tennis coach or a parent of a child who wants to learn how to play tennis, you should definitely check out the WebTennis24 Kids and the new 10 Lesson Plans program.

Cosmin Miholca

Cosmin Miholca

Certified Tennis Coach

Check out my work at WebTennis24 where I share with you my best video tennis lessons, drills and tips for players, coaches and tennis parents.

The Number One Reason Children QUIT Tennis

(This message is intended for professionals who teach tennis to children or beginning players. If you are not interested in this topic, please share it with a coach or tennis parent who might find it useful – thank you!)
——————-

children playing tennis

The year was 2004 when I got a job working as an assistant tennis coach for a city program.

The pay was just awful but I considered it an opportunity for me to learn and grow as a coach.
At that time I was in my twenties, barely spoke English, and was trying to learn as much as I could to improve my teaching skills.

The “city” was organizing beginner classes and my boss and I were greeting these big crowds of enthusiastic kids who were coming with their parents to learn how to play tennis.
My boss, at that time, was an elderly lady who was kind to kids but did not have too much knowledge about helping beginning players fall in love with the sport.
She would stress the discipline and technique way too much to the point that most players were staying in lines waiting for their turn to hit a ball once in a while…

As a result, we could see that even though those parents were paying for the lessons 6 weeks in advance, many children quit their classes after the first couple of lessons.
By the end of the 6-week session, we were left with barely 30% of the kids who signed up for the classes!

Those 2 years that I’d been working for the “city” taught me a VALUABLE lesson:

PEOPLE PLAY TENNIS BECAUSE THEY ENJOY IT.

And they quit if they don’t.

It’s just that simple…

Now, I have to say that during those 2 years of working for the “city” I did not let things continue as they initially were. Here’s what I did:

  1. I talked to my “boss” and convinced her to “rotate” the children so that they learn from both of us (with respect to the other’s methodology). In this way, the kids would get to learn and improve with tips from both of us.
  2. We agreed that we should find ways to limit waiting in line by introducing fast-paced drills.
  3. The technical aspects were discussed and practiced at the beginning and reminded throughout the lessons to make sure that while we were teaching those who struggled, we kept the others busy so that nobody was left wandering on the court.
  4. Every lesson should have at least two periods of fun activities that kids would enjoy:
    – one in the middle of the class to take their minds away from the technical and repetitive tasks, also to bring some excitement after all previous work;
    – another one at the end of the class (last 10 minutes) to allow the kids to leave their classes happy and “loud” so that they have something to look forward to after all the work they put in during the class; their parents would see that kids were having fun at tennis practice before picking them up.

This statement has been my motto for the rest of my tennis teaching career:
MAKE TENNIS LESSONS FUN AND THEY WILL KEEP COMING TO PRACTICE.

You might be wondering how can you find drills and games that keep kids interested and excited about practicing their skills?
Well, there are two main ways:

  1. You can search YouTube or the internet and eventually you’ll make a list of drills and games that you can apply with your students.
    But that takes time which you probably would be the best spending with your family or working on more exciting projects.
  2. You can sign up for programs such as Best Tennis Drills and Games for Kids which is a collection of drills and games that I’ve applied with my students during my many years of teaching thousands of beginning tennis players, kids and adults.

I’ve learned what works and what not, what gets beginning players excited, what kind of drills improve their speed, body control, shot accuracy, and consistency.

You can do your own research or just keep things simple and take what others have worked for and know it works.

This is why I created this program for you – to take my proven drills and games that are guaranteed to be loved by your beginning players.

Get access to Best Tennis Drills and Games for KIDS today and make tennis lessons fun for your beginning students.

Be Inspired,

Cosmin Miholca

Cosmin Miholca

Certified Tennis Coach

Check out my work at WebTennis24 where I share with you my best video tennis lessons, drills and tips for players, coaches and tennis parents.