Coaching At Thorn Park

“The coaching programmes are really well run by Jordan and his team of enthusiastic assistant coaches, they really strike a perfect balance of fun learning blended with clear performance improvement objectives whilst nurturing a positive attitude towards competitiveness in a friendly environment.”

Our Head Coach

Jordan Gray has been coaching full time ever since he stopped being a professional player. He’s managed to combine coaching and teaching with international competition; representing Great Britain at the 2018 World Championships and lifting the bronze medal. As a tennis professional for over 16 years, he has a proven track record of developing kids as young as 4 years old into world class junior players. Here he is in his own words…

Having been the head coach at Thorn Park for the past 11 years I have been fortunate enough to work with some of Scotlands best players. My main coaching ethos is “Tennis is a game for life, enjoy your journey”.

With experience of working with a variety of players, I am able to adapt my style and ideas to suit the player I’m coaching. To achieve this we try and create a fun competitive environment alongside our coaching program with a variety of teams and competitions that are open to everyone.

I am massively passionate about the game and love helping players make improvements to how they play. I believe that everyone who attends my coaching sessions should leave feeling positive about their game. 

Along with making the game FUN, my ultimate aim is getting players of all ages to take up the game and play all through their lives at whatever level they aspire to.

Coaching Programmes

Never held a racket? No problem, our coaches can adapt to each individual and help bring out their best. All kids need to bring is their energy, as the programme is designed to develop skills and contribute to keeping them fit and active. Add some healthy competition to teach them about good sportsmanship and you’ve got a set of skills for life.

It’s just like the real game and gives players opportunities to have long rallies and play different types of shots. Although we’ve assigned ages to each stage, these are just a guide. We’ll always put kids in the relevant group based on their ability.

  • Slower and larger balls. Usually 75% slower than a standard yellow ball made of felt and foam.
  • Smaller courts. Players are able to play the game from their first lesson.
  • Shorter rackets.

Players continue their progress from Mini Red and introduce them to new concepts. Players begin to develop a rounded game whilst learning a range of new techniques and tactics.

  • Players move to a larger court, relevant to their size.
  • Ball is slightly faster than at Red level, but still provides an optimal striking zone. Usually 50% slower than a standard yellow ball.
  • Continuation of developing good technique and the use of basic tactics.

The next stage before moving on to full compression yellow balls on a full sized court and helps players develop and improve all aspects of their game.

  • Balls are quicker than the previous stage. Usually 25% slower and lower bouncing than a standard yellow ball.
  • Played on full size courts with larger rackets.
  • Experienced players are able to implement advanced tactics.

Development continues into the players teenage years with the aim of improving various aspects of their game and the sport in general. Physical and mental fitness, social skills and good sportsmanship are all key elements that are covered. Sample topics would include:

  • Improving the rally ball.
  • Safer, more aggressive 2nd serves.
  • Defending smarter with the use of height, direction and recovery.

Our busy tennis camps run throughout the school breaks. The weekly programs are designed to incorporate a fun learning environment for kids taking the game up for the first time or for players with more experience. With flexibility of half day or full day sessions it is a great way for kids to spend their holiday breaks whilst offering parents some much needed help during these times.

Our adult members have the benefit of tailoring coaching to their own needs. Group training and individual lessons are available with our coaches, just contact us and ask.

"Rusty Racket" sessions have become very popular in recent years and are aimed at adult members who are picking up a racket after a period of inactivity and are keen to re-invigorate their skills, or who may be new to tennis.

These sessions are also open to non-members who pay a small supplement so that they can make a decision whether or not to join the club. Good fun and centred on a certain theme each week.