What is Tennis IQ?


A description of what Tennis IQ is and how it differs from the Recreational and Pro levels.

Responses (32)

NOTE: Comments will appear after they are approved.
  1. Chris
    December 3, 2015 at 3:50 am · Reply

    Thanks, interesting video. I agree with your take on needing to develop tactical play if you want to win matches against better players.

    I have a different goal with my tennis, however; you might call it a different game entirely. Rather than win games, my goal is to hit really well, fluidly, and keep a deep penetrating rally going. It’s great exercise, and helps me feel good the rest of the day or into the next. Keeping a high-level, heavy, targeted rally going is a game in itself, and quite a difficult thing to do for a non-pro. I may be an outlier, but I find it more satisfying to try to sustain a good rally than I do trying to end a point.

    When I go see the pros in person (Rogers Cup in Canada) , strangely enough I actually prefer watching the practices 🙂


  2. Sylvia Gothard
    November 25, 2015 at 4:48 pm · Reply

    Well done on the USPTA Pro of the Year Award. You deserve it! You are dynamic and have helped not only students of the game but all coaches and professionals who have taken the time to visit your website or attend one of your presentations. Great job! Yes, enjoyed the video too!

    • Jorge Capestany
      November 27, 2015 at 11:59 pm · Reply

      Thanks Sylvia…

  3. Mary
    November 25, 2015 at 4:22 pm · Reply

    Great information. I’m a beginner and I totally agree with you about where I am in the game.

    Thanks for the information (:

  4. Linda Mormile
    November 25, 2015 at 2:25 am · Reply

    I took notes while watching your video…you really hit the nail on the head with this one! I agree with you, I find that the players I have experience with are mostly stuck in the #2 category, and it makes it hard to have fun playing with that level player. Thank you

  5. Danny Tarpley
    November 24, 2015 at 7:10 pm · Reply

    Good assessment Jorge. As a pro I see many players at tournaments and league matches that have good fundamental strokes but lose on a regular basis to lesser skilled players. This I believe is because their coach has failed to teach them how to analyze their opponents weaknesses and adjust their game and strategy accordingly.

    • Jorge Capestany
      November 24, 2015 at 7:34 pm · Reply

      Thanks Danny… I agree. The cool part is that when coaches start teaching this way their students do a lot better AND the coaches have more fun too. How you hit the ball matters, but WHERE you hit the ball matters more.

  6. Nancy
    November 24, 2015 at 6:08 pm · Reply

    Great video! Nice simple explanation of the different levels.

  7. Mike Peters
    September 8, 2015 at 9:45 pm · Reply

    Jorge, great explanation but I have a question. You mention that the question Level 1 players dwell on after the match is technique….makes sense. But what are the questions that Level 2 players ask, vs. Level 3?

    • Jorge Capestany
      September 9, 2015 at 6:03 pm · Reply

      Great question… Level 2 players tend to ask themselves if they made the right shot selection. All stuff about THEIR OWN side of the court

      Level 3 players ask themselves if they manipulated their opponent the right way.. like strike zones and opponent’s positions on the court. All basically stuff about their OPPONENT’S SIDE of the court.

  8. bob morrow
    September 6, 2015 at 6:11 pm · Reply

    Well, to get better we have got to have good strokes! That a big part of what learn as a student. And I know it is not just good strokes but a lot of other things!

    • Jorge Capestany
      September 7, 2015 at 8:12 pm · Reply

      Solid strokes and important for sure Bob… I have found that too many players never move off of strokes and develop their Tennis IQ.

  9. Adam
    September 3, 2015 at 7:27 am · Reply

    Great initiative and some valuable insight Jorge, would resonate with most players I’m sure (sure does with me).
    Love your website and your passion for the game,


  10. KimWilliams
    September 3, 2015 at 12:28 am · Reply

    Thanks Jose,
    I have found in my coaching that there are a number of ways to go where you are taking us with your course. Every player is different so this instruction will help many get past that “technique trap” you so aptly describe it. I apologise in advance for stealing your ideas but it is always for our player’s benefit and I always acknowledge where the tips come from. Thanks for being such a great communicator!

  11. John Rinaldi
    September 3, 2015 at 12:20 am · Reply

    I agree 100 %. I teach in 3 steps technique first spins 2nd, and than tactical winning high percentage tennis.

  12. Renee Archambo
    September 2, 2015 at 11:06 pm · Reply

    Thanks Jorge! I’m excited to learn this!

  13. Fabiana Ibañez-Dieguez
    September 2, 2015 at 7:03 pm · Reply

    Well done explaining it. I am looking forward to watch the video. Thank you for your passion to tennis.

  14. Fred Burdick, USPTA Master Professional
    September 2, 2015 at 5:54 pm · Reply

    Jorge, You’ve always been innovative. You’re one of the top speakers on teaching the game. Looking forward to your approach with Tennis IQ.

    • Jorge Capestany
      September 2, 2015 at 9:35 pm · Reply

      Thanks Fred, Nice hearing from you.

  15. Kirk Orahood
    September 2, 2015 at 5:31 pm · Reply

    Jorge: Thank you…Every tennis parent in the OC needs to hear this….Your videos are very enlightening…I have ‘raised’ 2 ATP/Wimbledon players from scratch and usually do not comment in most tennis blogs, but feel the need to compliment you!…Well done as usual!..and Ron Atkinson, I live on TStreet in san clemente , one of the best surf/body surf beaches anywhere…. you are right, it’s not the wave, it’s what you do WITH the wave…I see it everyday ! KO

    • Jorge Capestany
      September 2, 2015 at 9:36 pm · Reply

      Thanks Kirk, and nice job raising those kids to be such great players!

  16. Coach Poole
    September 2, 2015 at 4:26 pm · Reply

    Good Work Jorge,

    Keeping it simple yet effective. The better we can help bridge the disconnect between Technical & Tactical Development for Coaches and Players the better Player Development as a whole will be. This will hopefully help encourage coaches/players to spend more time in “live ball” tactical situations and players playing more sets for development and not just for rankings. Get players out of drilling lines and coaches away from baskets.
    Keep Up the Great Work.

  17. Ron Atkinson
    September 2, 2015 at 2:53 pm · Reply

    Looking forward to your new course. You hit the nail on the head in search for the perfect stroke.
    I know I’m guilty of that mind set,the surfer in me. I’m always looking for the “perfect” wave instead of working with what I have.

    Ron Atkinson USPTA

    • Jorge Capestany
      September 2, 2015 at 3:44 pm · Reply

      Thanks Ron.. I am excited about it.

  18. Cathy
    September 2, 2015 at 1:54 pm · Reply

    I agree with what you said. I am a Rec player 3.5/4.0 women’s league . Strategies are so fun to build into your tennis game and takes a moving group together to want to make better IQ observations and decisions .

  19. Evan Atkinson
    September 2, 2015 at 1:22 pm · Reply

    You hit the nail on the head. I often tell players that they are great at hitting but need to learn how to play. One thing you’ve said in other videos is to think shots, not strokes. These are both great explanations as to what proper focus should be to increase tennis iq. Great video.

  20. maura
    September 2, 2015 at 1:18 pm · Reply

    I like how you are defining the IQ’s in tennis. This is interesting to me as a player and a HS coach. You are a creative thinker.

  21. Gerry Blum
    September 2, 2015 at 1:11 pm · Reply

    You are so Right on Spot. We have 4 different learning stages unconcsious incomptence-conscious incompetence-conscious competence and the highest Level unconscious competence. The Tennis IQ Level 1 is in the first 2 learning phases, the IQ Level 2 in the third and the IQ Level 4 in the 4th learning Level. The goal of every player is to reach the Level where we dont think about technique, tactics and strategy and we just Play playing in the Flow and making the smartest Shot selection. Our job as Coaches is to help our Players from beginners to Professionals to get to that highest stage and i believe that a high tennis IQ can sometimes be achieved earlier then technical perfection, if the player understands percentage tennis in connection to the geomoetry of the court and a quick SWOT analysis of the opponent. I go theough a very in detail SWOT Stregths Weaknesses Opportunities and Threats analysis with my pro players before every match, so that they kind of have a procedure plan they can obvioisly alter in the Match and we do a follow up SWOT just to compare the plan with the reality my player and i actually saw in the match. Every recreational player can improve their tennis Level by adding all tennis IQ levels and implementing a simple SWOT. Tennis is Overall a Chess Game with a Racket and a Ball in a room that has to Be used wisely against an Opponent with certain strengths, weaknesses and playbook tendencies that wie have to Understand

  22. Marty grogan
    September 2, 2015 at 1:06 pm · Reply

    Thanks for your great comments.

  23. Coach Cooper
    September 2, 2015 at 12:54 pm · Reply

    Great video. Love the explanations on each level. Meet you and talked with you at the tennis workshop at
    Vaughan Athletic Center. Keep up the good work

  24. Dave Williams
    September 2, 2015 at 12:46 pm · Reply

    I think about both technique and tactics. Since I play doubles, right now my tactical focus is on when to poach. On the technique side, I’m struggling mostly with serve consistency.

  25. Fabian
    September 2, 2015 at 12:27 pm · Reply

    Very good video! full understanding and very helpfull.

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