Play tennis like a pro: Serena Williams’ ex-coach offers ‘key’ tips to improve your game

Serena Williams: 'Felt good' to be back on court

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With the sun shining and Wimbledon underway, plenty of people are looking to get their game on. But where to start? Professional tennis coach Patrick Mouratoglou, who is an ambassador for innovative racquet sports organisation Slinger and tennis icon Serena Williams’ former coach, has suggested key ways people can improve technical aspects and bring out their inner champion.

They say practice makes perfect and Patrick revealed it definitely applies when it comes to tennis.

He explained: “Repetition is the mother of all skills, you have heard about the 10,000 hours theory.

“We know now that you can accomplish mastery without having to put in that much work, as long as you make sure every hour counts.”

He continued to say that its about “quality over quantity”.

“One focused hour is worth about three unfocused ones,” he said.

“Try to always show up with a sense of purpose, this is important when you step on a court.

“Have a clear goal before each training or match and give your best to accomplish it.”

Despite all this, Patrick reassured people “not be too hard” on themselves.

“One of the appealing things about tennis for many is the fact it is not easy at all,” he said.

“Sometimes you love it fully, but it does not love you back.

“The key is not beat yourself up. Stubborn perfectionism is the quickest road to frustration.

“The brain and the body work best when they are relaxed.”

The tennis coach suggested simple tips to implement into practice that can really up a person’s game.

“This little trick can help you transfer your weight as well as hit cleaner shots – breathe out at the moment of contact,” he advised.

“This is a very good cue that shows that you are ‘on time’ and ready to hit the ball in a relaxed way, which is key to allow your body weight to go through the ball.”

He also explained that “breathing properly means you will not get as tired”.

And practice doesn’t just come on the court.

If you want to improve your game in the gym there are certain muscle groups people should work on to build strength.

“Most players do not realise that their strokes start from the ground up, Patrick revealed.

“It is the loss of balance during the hitting phase that contributes mostly to the loss of control of the racket head and therefore loss of control of the ball.

“Besides drills, another key initiative to improve you base is to strengthen your legs and core, with exercises such as single leg bridges, forward/backward/side lunges, and lateral bounds.”

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