ITF gives coaches free access to its online resources

In an attempt to help coaches around the world, the ITF has stepped up online content from its invaluable resources and made it free.

Dr. Miguel Crespo.   -  Special Arrangement

Indian tennis coaches have capitalised on the time available due to the lockdown by enriching themselves with the resources available freely at the ITF Academy.

In an attempt to help coaches around the world, the International Tennis Federation (ITF) has stepped up online content from its invaluable resources and made it free.

The coaches have to only register, make use of the resources, and get themselves certified with about 30 courses available at the moment.

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Accept and adapt

“To accept and adapt is the way forward,” said Dr. Miguel Crespo, a pioneer in ITF’s coaching department, as he pointed to the current scenario, when he addressed Indian coaches during a webinar organised by the National federation and the Sports Authority of India (SAI).

With 1100 coaches registered with the ITF, India is already the leader in the world, and Crespo suggested how the coaches could enhance their knowledge and guide others.

The ITF has been on a digital drive, and has put “all content on the digital platform”.

Blended learning

“It is all free and there is no excuse any more,” said Crespo. “It is blended learning. We will continue to have face to face courses, as well as the online part. The online courses started two years ago. You can do several courses online and download certificates. The courses are free now, owing to COVID-19. It may not happen again,” said Crespo, sounding a friendly warning.

“It is not just for coaches. Anyone can do them and improve their knowledge. There are courses for parents also. Many may know, but you can reinforce your knowledge,” he said.

“The ITF is planning to have parents education, as a 20-minute online process and a two-hour face to face interaction,” he added.

The content is in three parts — regular courses, question and answer section, and case studies.

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Enhanced library

The ITF has also enhanced its library, by putting videos, drills, interviews and articles in its I-coach centre, accessible to all registered coaches.

“There are already more than 3000 pieces of content,” said Crespo.

The ITF Advanced Coaches Manual, which Crespo has co-authored with Dave Miley, is also free on the App.

Suggesting the importance of using technology wisely, Crespo said that it was equally important for coaches to focus on regular participants in tennis.

“Competitive players are only five per cent. The rest are normal players. We need to help them,” said Crespo.

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