CIT uses the games-based approach
when teaching junior development classes in the CIT Jr. Tennis
The games-based approach ensures the fun of playing tennis is retained by creating
game-like situations or lead-up games that suit the skill level of
players. It might seem logical to introduce kids to tennis by
teaching the basic skills of the sport before they are introduced
to strategy or tactics. However, the
risk with teaching skills first is that it can be so boring and
repetitive that young players may drop
out. If they do stick with the sport, they may learn
to execute the skills with little or no idea of when to apply
them within the game.
The games-based approach
will help kids learn faster, have more fun, and understand more
clearly how to apply their skills to the game. Keep in
mind, skill development is not ignored with this approach.
Rather, kids start by playing the game, then learning strategy
before concentrating on the tennis technique. Using "play" as
a first step helps kids understand the game and identify what
skills they think they will need to be successful. The
motivation to learn these skills is built in from the outset, so
little persuasion from the teacher is needed.
One of the key characteristics of Game-Based
coaching is that kids discover how to succeed during play through
their experience in playing-not by telling them what to do.
The situation is created; they play the game and then try to
figure out how to problem-solve.