During a Tennis Hot Shots Tournament you may be asked to help out on court, so this page should help give you an idea of what to expect and also give you the confidence to put your hand up as a volunteer.
Supervising a court may involve:
- guiding children where to stand (behind the baseline to start the point)
- reminding children who's turn it is to start the point (in most cases they would alternate every two points)
- showing children where to aim their serves (diagonally into the service box, unless alternate rules are in place for beginners)
- calling the ball out (or explaining what 'out' is so players can then do it themselves)
- keeping track of score (let kids lead this, but keep track just in case they forget where they're at!)
- reminding players to shake hands at the end of the match
- reminding players to give the score to the organiser at the end of the match
- helping with any general confusion
- congratulating both players on a fun match that you enjoyed watching
As a parent, it is your job to be your child's number one fan, and to cheer on the other players as well. Don't coach, don't critique, just enjoy the tennis and help out where you can if the tournament organiser asks.
General recommendations - how to be a great tennis parent
Be supportive - don't coach!
Be your child's best fan, unconditionally, and remember that your child is NOT the sum of their performance.
Make your first question after the match "Did you have fun?" NOT "What was the score?"
Stress the process, not the outcome. Supportive parents de-emphasise winning and instead stress learning the skills, playing the game, participating and enjoying the journey.
Talk and act respectfully of coaches, organisers, other players and parents.