Tennis coach

A tennis coach and his student


Tennis coaches advise and guide individuals and groups on playing tennis. They conduct lessons and teach the rules and techniques of the sport such as grips, strokes and serves. They motivate their clients and help improve their performance.

The duties of a tennis coach typically include, but are not limited to:

  • Assisting students in developing and improving various tennis skills.
  • Assessing students’ tennis skills to determine areas in need of improvement.
  • Coordinating and conducting individual and group tennis lessons.
  • Developing suitable training programs for students based on their age, objectives, and individual skillsets.
  • Developing innovative ways to assist beginner or younger students in learning and remembering the rules of the game.
  • Identifying the learning styles that work best for each student and adapting all coaching methods accordingly.
  • Providing a secure and productive learning environment for students.
  • Scheduling meetings with students’ parents or guardians to discuss their progress.
  • Attending students’ tennis matches, competitions, and tournaments as required.

Other titles

The following job titles also refer to tennis coach:

mini tennis coach
tennis trainer
performance tennis coach
cardio tennis coach
tennis teacher
tennis instructor
head tennis coach

Working conditions

Professional tennis coaches typically work long hours, often more than 40 hours per week, and they may work evenings and weekends to accommodate their players’ schedules. They also travel frequently to tournaments, which can take them away from home for extended periods of time. Coaches typically work in a variety of settings, including indoor and outdoor tennis courts, fitness centers, and offices. Some coaches also work as independent contractors, which gives them more flexibility in setting their own schedules. However, they may have to work irregular hours, including evenings and weekends, to meet their players’ needs.

Minimum qualifications

Professional tennis coaches are typically required to have a bachelor’s degree in a sport-related field, such as kinesiology, exercise science or physical education. Some coaches also have a master’s degree in sport science or a related field.

Professional tennis coaches typically receive on-the-job training from their current or previous employer. This training may include learning the club’s policies and procedures, the club’s facilities and the club’s equipment. It may also include shadowing current tennis coaches to learn the club’s coaching style and the techniques they use.

Tennis coaches do not need a certification or license to coach, as the sport is self-regulated. However, some professional tennis coaches opt to become certified through the Professional Tennis Registry (PTR)..

ISCO skill level

ISCO skill level is defined as a function of the complexity and range of tasks and duties to be performed in an occupation. It is measured on a scale from 1 to 4, with 1 the lowest level and 4 the highest, by considering:

  • the nature of the work performed in an occupation in relation to the characteristic tasks and duties
  • the level of formal education required for competent performance of the tasks and duties involved and
  • the amount of informal on-the-job training and/or previous experience in a related occupation required for competent performance of these tasks and duties.

Tennis coach is a Skill level 3 occupation.

Tennis coach career path

Similar occupations

These occupations, although different, require a lot of knowledge and skills similar to tennis coach.

sports instructor
horse riding instructor
snowboard instructor
ski instructor
boxing instructor

Long term prospects

These occupations require some skills and knowledge of tennis coach. They also require other skills and knowledge, but at a higher ISCO skill level, meaning these occupations are accessible from a position of tennis coach with a significant experience and/or extensive training.

physical education vocational teacher
business coach
physical education teacher secondary school
sign language teacher
adult literacy teacher

Essential knowledge and skills

Essential knowledge

This knowledge should be acquired through learning to fulfill the role of tennis coach.

  • Tennis: The techniques and rules of tennis such as the different strokes, types of courts and how to play on them, equipment and scoring.

Essential skills and competences

These skills are necessary for the role of tennis coach.

  • Personalise sports programme: Observe and evaluate individual performance and determine personal needs and motivation to tailor programmes accordingly and in conjunction with the participant
  • Maintain working relationships: Ensure effective working relationships with colleagues and others. Maintain them over long periods of time.
  • Perform self-assessment: Effectively, regularly and systematically reflect on own actions, performance, and attitudes, and make necessary adjustments, seeking professional development opportunities to plug knowledge and practice gaps in identified areas.
  • Demonstrate professional attitude to clients: Demonstrate responsibility and professional duty of care to clients which will include communication skills and a focus of customer care orientation.
  • Plan sports instruction programme: Provide participants with an appropriate programme of activities to support progression to the required level of expertise in the specified time taking into account relevant scientific and sport-specific knowledge.
  • Maintain customer service: Keep the highest possible customer service and make sure that the customer service is at all times performed in a professional way. Help customers or participants feel at ease and support special requirements.
  • Promote balance between rest and activity: Provide information about the role of rest and regeneration in the development of sport performance. Foster rest and regeneration by providing appropriate ratios of training, competition and rest.
  • Apply risk management in sports: Manage the environment and athletes or participants to minimise their chances of suffering any harm. This includes checking appropriateness of venue and equipment and gathering relevant sport and health history from athletes or participants. It also includes ensuring appropriate insurance cover is in place at all times
  • Instruct in sport: Provide appropriate technical and tactical instruction related to the given sport using varied and sound pedagogical approaches to meet the needs of the participants and achieve the desired objectives. This requires skills such as communication, explanation, demonstration, modelling, feedback, questioning and correction.
  • Organise sporting environment: Organise people and the environment to achieve desired objectives safely and efficiently.
  • Motivate in sports: Positively foster athletes and participants’ intrinsic desire to carry out the required tasks to fulfill their goals and to push themselves beyond their current levels of skill and understanding.

Optional knowledge and skills

Optional knowledge

This knowledge is sometimes, but not always, required for the role of tennis coach. However, mastering this knowledge allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

  • Teamwork principles: The cooperation between people characterised by a unified commitment to achieving a given goal, participating equally, maintaining open communication, facilitating effective usage of ideas etc.

Optional skills and competences

These skills and competences are sometimes, but not always, required for the role of tennis coach. However, mastering these skills and competences allows you to have more opportunities for career development.

  • Provide first aid: Administer cardiopulmonary resuscitation or first aid in order to provide help to a sick or injured person until they receive more complete medical treatment.
  • Work with different target groups: Work with a variety of target groups based on age, gender and disability.
  • Apply teaching strategies: Employ various approaches, learning styles, and channels to instruct students, such as communicating content in terms they can understand, organising talking points for clarity, and repeating arguments when necessary. Use a wide range of teaching devices and methodologies appropriate to the class content, the learners’ level, goals, and priorities.
  • Assess students: Evaluate the students’ (academic) progress, achievements, course knowledge and skills through assignments, tests, and examinations. Diagnose their needs and track their progress, strengths, and weaknesses. Formulate a summative statement of the goals the student achieved.
  • Support sport in media: Collaborate with the various media outlets to support their work and benefit the popularity of sport and its stakeholders. Be a role model to encourage more people to take up sport
  • Assist clients with special needs: Aid clients with special needs following relevant guidelines and special standards. Recognise their needs and accurately respond to them if needed.
  • Give constructive feedback: Provide founded feedback through both criticism and praise in a respectful, clear, and consistent manner. Highlight achievements as well as mistakes and set up methods of formative assessment to evaluate work.

ISCO group and title

3422 – Sports coaches, instructors and officials

  1. Tennis coach – ESCO
  2. Professional Tennis Coach Job Description: Salary, Duties, & More – Climb the Ladder
  3. Tennis Coach Job Description – Betterteam
  4. Featured image: Photo by Richard Sagredo on Unsplash
Last updated on April 23, 2023

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