Coach Wayne’s Corner

Tournament Tough

Coach Wayne’s Corner Wayne Clark WClark@cityofmarcoisland.com As the sport of pickleball grows and becomes more popular, many new players to the game are expanding the horizons of their participation in the sport and are thinking of competing in tournaments. First off, I want to emphasize the difference between competing in recreational/rotational play and competing in tournament play competition. The reason ... Read More »

Stacking in Pickleball

Coach Wayne’s Corner Wayne Clark WClark@cityofmarcoisland.com In my last column, titled “Proper Positioning is Paramount,” I discussed the importance of having ourselves properly set up in pickleball, to encourage and promote forehands on our groundstrokes. In that column, I recommended both members of the serving team set themselves up at the baseline area in a position to encourage a forehand ... Read More »

Proper Positioning is Paramount

Coach Wayne’s Corner Wayne Clark WClark@cityofmarcoisland.com In all sports, we need to make sure that we are properly positioned to allow ourselves to efficiently and effectively execute a strategic game plan. In previous columns, I have discussed my belief of the need for proper fundamentals with both the serve and the return, as well as the fact of how important I believe ... Read More »

Defining the Dink

Coach Wayne’s Corner Wayne Clark WClark@cityofmarcoisland.com One of the most misunderstood aspects of the sport of pickleball, especially for beginners, is the utilization of the seven-foot, no volley zone, aka the kitchen. I personally don’t like to refer to it as a “no volley zone,” for two reasons. Number one, I am a “glass is half full” type of person. ... Read More »

Don’t Worry, Be Happy

Coach Wayneís Corner Wayne Clark WClark@cityofmarcoisland.com We all know the song, and I feel we need to apply this song title to our attitudes when playing recreational tennis and pickleball. I too often see players get upset and stressed out during recreational competition. While I am a very competitive player and I like to win, when I am on the ... Read More »

Equipment Check

Coach Wayne’s Corner By Wayne Clark As a coach and instructor, my customers and students frequently ask me, “What kind of tennis racquet or pickleball paddle should I buy?” Like purchasing anything today, it can be somewhat overwhelming and confusing because there is so much to choose from. In both tennis and pickleball, racquets and paddles were originally made of ... Read More »

Play the Percentages

Coach Wayne’s Corner  Wayne Clark WClark@cityofmarcoisland.com The sports of tennis and pickleball have a lot in common. As an instructor, I feel the biggest common denominator of both sports is having proper understanding of and being able to execute high percentage play. If you are a regular reader of my column, you know I’ve said it before, “Unforced errors are ... Read More »

Practice Makes Perfect

Coach Wayne’s Corner Wayne Clark WClark@cityofmarcoisland.com As someone who is a full time/year round resident, who continues to play and compete in the sports of tennis and pickleball during the off season, I find that my game tends to get in a bit of a rut, simply because I am playing and competing with the same handful of players day ... Read More »

Leveling the Playing Field

Coach Wayne’s Corner Wayne Clark As a coach and a competitor, I am seeing an unprecedented number of new pickleball players on the courts. Many of these players are actively competing on a daily basis, and some are even playing twice a day, once in the morning and again in the afternoon. It is a sport that is easy to ... Read More »

Fashion Statement

COACH WAYNE’S CORNER Wayne Clark WClark@cityofmarcoisland.com As the father of two daughters, I never seemed to have any success getting my girls to watch sports, like football, on television with me. I just had to accept the fact that they were not boys, and they did not like to watch football, and I had to learn to live with that! I always ... Read More »

Can Pickleball Improve Your Tennis?

Coach Wayne’s Corner  Wayne Clark With the ever-growing popularity of the sport of pickleball, I have had many tennis players tell me that they don’t want to play pickleball, because they fear it will mess up their tennis game. However, due to the fact that the fundamental strategy of the sport of pickleball is to play and complete points at ... Read More »

Of Major Importance

Coach Wayne’s Corner  Wayne Clark Every sport has its season ending championship series or game. In football it’s the Super Bowl, in baseball it’s the World Series, in hockey it’s the Stanley Cup, in soccer it’s the World Cup, etc. But the sport of tennis is somewhat different. Professional tennis is played on a year-round basis and does not have ... Read More »

How Spin Affects Today’s Game

Coach Wayne’s Corner  Wayne Clark In today’s world of professional tennis, with all of the big topspin forehands and two-handed backhands, players don’t just hit the ball hard, they hit it heavy! By heavy, I mean that they hit the ball with a lot of spin. Through the utilization of high tech photography, it has been measured, that the men ... Read More »

Olympic Opportunity

Coach Wayne’s Corner  Wayne Clark I have always enjoyed rooting for the underdog. Even more so, watching underdogs win! Such was the case in both men’s and women’s tennis in this year’s Olympic Games. The tennis coverage of the 2016 Olympics on Bravo network was fantastic. Virtually every match that was played was available to be watched. It was great ... Read More »

The Importance of Holding Serve

Coach Wayne’s Corner  Wayne Clark I enjoy watching tennis and golf on television because the commentators (who are usually retired champions themselves) do such a great job of explaining what is occurring mentally and emotionally with a player, which directly translates to what is occurring physically as the players compete. How many times do you hear winning players being asked, ... Read More »

Handling Nerves

Coach Wayne’s Corner  Wayne Clark All of us get anxious and nervous about things. As a high school or college student, it may SATs or final exams. In our careers, it may be a new job interview or a meeting with your boss. Maybe you don’t like to speak in public or in front of large groups.?Some of us don’t ... Read More »

Communication Breakdown

Coach Wayne’s Corner Wayne Clark WClark@cityofmarcoisland.com In all sports, focus and concentration are a vital part of winning. In most sports, coaches on the sidelines are able to constantly observe and advise on a play-by-play status, allowing the athletes to be able to focus solely on performing. Pickleball, like the sport of tennis, requires players to be their own coach ... Read More »

Traditionally Speaking

Coach Wayne’s Corner Wayne Clark Over the years, traditions in all sports, have changed. Two of the most ‘old school’ and honorable sports are tennis and golf. I was recently watching a broadcast of vintage Wimbledon matches on The Tennis Channel. The show included an interview with the great Rod Laver, aka, “The Rocket”, about how the game has changed ... Read More »

Beat The Heat

COACH WAYNE’S CORNER Wayne Clark WClark@cityofmarcoisland.com Earlier this season, I had a column called “Dress Code Required,” in which I discussed being properly equipped and protected when competing in outdoor sports activities. Summer is here and the days are long and hot. Staying cool and keeping well hydrated is an important daily requirement when living in the Sunshine State. This is even ... Read More »

Dominate the Dink

Coach Wayne,s Corner Wayne Clark WClark@cityofmarcoisland.com In one of my columns earlier this year, I stated that the serve and the return were the two most important shots in the game. In both tennis and pickleball, we can’t win a point if we can’t get the point started! While this statement still holds true, I believe that in pickleball, the ... Read More »