Loughborough partner with the LTA to support parents

Loughborough University have partnered with the Lawn Tennis Association (LTA) to provide information to support parents of elite tennis players, during Parents in Sport Week.

Taking place from 4 - 10 October, the week includes a series of online workshops, covering: how to optimally support a child at tennis competitions; the importance of parent-child interactions during car journeys; and how parents can adopt the 5Cs model (Commitment, Communication, Concentration, Control and Confidence) to support their child.

There is also the opportunity for parents to hear from the parents of professional players, including Judy Murray, Carolyn Salisbury, and Yvonne Burrage on how they have supported their children.

Professor Chris Harwood, who is delivering a number of the sessions, explained: 

"Beyond the multiple technical and physical skills that comprise the game, tennis is a challenging, individual sport from a psychological point of view and parents play vital roles in helping young children cope with winning and losing, and going onto court with the right mindset for enjoying the game.

"It is also a sport that demands a great deal of commitment from parents if their child wants to compete regularly and follow a performance pathway.

"We want to instil knowledge into parents new to tennis from those parents who have already been on the journey, and equip them with some of the strategies that they can use to optimally support their child."

The week of activity is a continuation of the ongoing work that Loughborough University is doing with the LTA, the International Tennis Federation, and the Turkish Tennis Federation in support of parents. 

Prof Harwood continued: "We have a longstanding tradition and expertise within the science of tennis, the development of coaches and young players in our National Academy, and of course our successful University student-athlete performance programme here. Tennis has been prominent at Loughborough for over 40 years, through initial work by Rod Thorpe, and we have world-class staff, world-class facilities and world-class tennis alumni who operate at the highest levels of the game. There is a lot we can do here to help parents of the next generation.

Parents in Sport Week programme

The programme of online workshops includes:

  • Panel with Judy Murray, OBE (John Dolan host)
    Monday 4 October 2021, 19:00 - 20:30pm
    Registration: Zoom only

    We start the week with your chance to put your questions to the mother (and original Coach) behind 10 Grand Slam titles and one of the most influential women in British sport

  • Competition Parenting Workshop (Chris Harwood & Sam Thrower)
    Tuesday 5 October 2021, 19:00 - 21:00pm
    Registration: LTA website

    Your invitation to an interactive 2 hour session designed to provide you with the knowledge and skills needed to optimally support your child at tennis competitions

  • Panel wtih Carolyn Salisbury, Yvonne Burrage and Yasmin Clarke (host)
    Wednesday 6 October 2021, 19:00 - 20:30pm
    Registration: Zoom only

    Get your questions ready for our second panel of the week, with the mum of 2-time Grand Slam champion, Joe Salisbury, mum of GB Billie Jean King Cup team member, Jodie Burrage, and sister + Coach of GB Davis Cup team member, Jay Clarke

  • The Science behind the strategy: what was learnt from recording and analysing parent-child interactions during car journeys (Dr Sam Thrower and Prof. Chris Harwood)
    Thursday 7 October 2021, 19:30 - 20:30pm
    Registration: Zoom only

    An inside view on the science behind the LTA’s parent education and support strategy. The presentation will explore if the competition parenting workshop is starting to change parent behaviour and what has been learnt from their latest research analysing parent-child interactions during car journeys.

  • 5Cs Parenting Workshop (Chris Harwood & Sam Thrower)
    Sunday 10 October 2021, 19:00 - 21:00pm
    Registration: LTA website

    This follow up to the Competition Parenting Workshop provides further guidance for parents to support their experiences in tennis and how they can support their child by using the 5Cs model (Commitment, Communication, Concentration, Control and Confidence).

More information

For more information about the work that the LTA do to support parents, please visit the LTA website