Miles Maclagan’s coaching tips
Originally published on: 27/02/13 00:00
Maclagan, who took Boris Becker to five sets at Wimbledon in 1999, made the successful transition from player to coach, guiding Murray to his first major final at the US Open in 2008.
“If anyone can tell you a champion at 12 years old I would like to meet that person – I’m not sure if they exist,” Maclagan says. “What’s more important is getting them playing different sports as much as possible and depending on the age, keeping some fun in it.
“I strongly believe up until at least 12 or 13 they should definitely be playing a variation of sports because that in itself benefits tennis and for a young body – it keeps them balanced doing different things and mentally fresher.
“Tennis is a simple game – there are no big secrets out there. If they feel like that there is some new mythical thing they are missing out on, they are not.
“The most important thing for a coach is to set a positive environment and avoid getting overly involved. If you have got an environment with a few kids and its positive and they are all enjoying it and working hard, that might be your job done, you don’t need to get much more involved than that.”
Miles Maclagan will be a taking part in an exclusive Q+A session at Tennis First’s 80s night at the All England Club on Saturday, March 2. Tickets (£35) include a meal and a night of 80s disco. For more information, visit www.tennisfirst.org.uk or email firstname.lastname@example.org.