“A lot of players – especially in the performance sector – are so one-track-minded,” admits Alan Bevan, performance coach at the Everyball International Tennis Academy at Halton Tennis Centre.
“Take Lauren’s forehand. She doesn’t believe she has a problem, but in reality the ball doesn’t land in! It goes over the net but doesn’t come down quickly enough.”
At just 13 years old, Lauren Armstrong is already one of the top-ranked juniors in the country – a top-20 player at U14 level and ranked inside the top 250 at U18. But while she is producing impressive results, Bevan is keen to hone her shots and keep the wins coming.
Armstrong naturally hits her forehand far flatter than Bevan would like. “We’re finding a constant problem: as soon as she came up against players of a certain level, or a player who hits the ball a little bit harder and flatter, the errors start to come – especially off the forehand side.
“At Lauren’s level we can’t let her get away with pushing the ball in – the pace needs to be very high – but control over the ball is the issue.
“It’s tough to recreate that in a training environment and get the player to understand what is wrong. So that’s where the Babolat Play Pure Drive came in.”
Armstrong, a long-time Babolat Pure Drive player, switched to the Play Pure Drive in September, with Bevan on hand to help review her stats using his coach login.
“The first time we had it, we used it during a normal session then afterwards looked at the app,” Bevan recalls. “It broke down the number of forehands and the percentage of flat and topspin strokes Lauren had hit. In that first session, she had hit something like 78% flat!
“The app is really easy to use – you just sync it up and go, and in seconds you have your feedback. And it’s so easy for Lauren to incorporate into her understanding of the game – it spelled out exactly what was happening.”
For your chance to win, simply answer the question below by filling out the form on the right hand side of this page.
Babolat Play can give you information about which aspects of your game?
d) All of the above
The closing date for entries is January 31, 2015. No cash alternative will be provided. Tennishead terms and conditions apply.
This competition is no longer open for entries. The winner has been drawn from all the correct entries received by the closing date.