Tennis Drills for Kids At Home and On the Court

Tennis Drills for Kids At Home and On the Court

Tennisat a young age is a great way to develop many motor skills as well as a passion for the lifelong sport. In this article, there are several drills that children from ages 5 through 10+ can practice, including drills that can be practiced at home or at the tennis court, and drills that can be performed with and without a tennis racquet. The primary goal of these tennis drills is to work on footwork and hand-eye coordination, as these are two major components to building and improving tennis skills. The main focuses during these drills should be following directions, practicing good form, quality over quantity, and most importantly to HAVE FUN!

For children of young ages, there are a variety of junior tennis balls and junior tennis racquets that can be used as kids grow in age, size and skill. It is important to use the correct equipment suitable to the child’s age and skill level, as the equipment can have adverse impacts if it is not the appropriate equipment. Tennis balls that have too little compression or too much compression can hinder shot development and reduce rallies because the tennis balls may be too slow or too fast for the child. Tennis racquets that are too small or too large can harm technique and possibly cause injury, and they can also make playing tennis too challenging to the point that kids will lose interest in the game.

If you are unsure of which equipment is correct for your child, contact a local tennis pro for help identifying suitable equipment, and when in doubt it is safer to use tennis balls with lower compression and racquets on the smaller side. Try to avoid handing a child the same tennis racquet and tennis balls that you would use as an adult, as they could injure themselves and have very little success in growing their tennis skills.

When practicing tennis drills with young kids, here are some quick tips to success:

- Make it fun! Children are more likely to succeed when they are having a good time
- Turn drills into a game that the kids can always win at
- If a drill is too challenging and the child is struggling, modify the drill to make it easier. This can be accomplished by eliminating targets, removing a phase of the stroke, etc.
- If a drill is too easy and the child is excelling, add progressions to the drill to make it more challenging. Add targets, hit groundstrokes while running, etc.
- If the child loses interest in the current drill, move onto the next drill or take a break to drink water and eat snacks.
- Most importantly, play safely! If a child is behaving in a way that is dangerous to themselves or others, take a time out or move onto the next drill

Sorbz Fun Tennis Dampeners - 12 Pack ADV Tennis
Sorbz Fun Tennis Dampeners - 12 Pack ADV Tennis
Sorbz Fun Tennis Dampeners - 12 Pack ADV Tennis
Sorbz Fun Tennis Dampeners - 12 Pack ADV Tennis
Sorbz Fun Tennis Dampeners - 12 Pack ADV Tennis
Sorbz Fun Tennis Dampeners - 12 Pack ADV Tennis
Sorbz Fun Tennis Dampeners - 12 Pack ADV Tennis
Sorbz Fun Tennis Dampeners - 12 Pack ADV Tennis

Sorbz Fun Tennis Dampeners - 12 Pack

$14.95

Super Set of 12 Dampeners
Have fun and express yourself on court! These dampeners are all unique and let you share a bit of delight with everyone on the court. They make great gifts for your favorite tennis players - kids and adults alike. 

  • 🎾 MORE VARIETY, MORE FUN! Express yourself with this exclusive 12-pack which has the most unique dampeners out there.
  • 🎾 DURABLE AND LONG LASTING. Express yourself on court while still having the best feel on every shot.
  • 🎾 QUICK INSTALLATION FOR DAMPENERS THAT WILL STAY PUT. Each dampener is easy to install and will stay on, so no need to worry about losing it.
  • 🎾 THE PERFECT GIFT. These make great gifts for all your friends and family members who love tennis. Reward your players with these fun and useful accessories.
  • 🎾 100% SATISFACTION MONEY-BACK GUARANTEED. If these dampeners are not perfect, feel free to exchange or return it for a 100% refund.
View details

Kid's Tennis Drills at Home

Retrieve the Ball

Setup
- Adult or other player stands 5 ft apart from child facing each other in an open space such as a driveway or garage, with feet apart.
- Adult or other player should have a red ball.

Goal

- Adult or other player rolls ball between child’s feet, child should turn and retrieve the ball as quickly as possible

Variations and Progressions
- Child faces away from the adult / other player, adult / other player rolls ball between feet
- Toss ball over child’s head while they are facing towards or away

Walk the Line

Setup
- Child finds a line to walk on, such as a crack in the driveway or next to a long piece of rope.

Goal
- Walk the line with one foot directly in front of the other, heel to toe.
- Walk forward and backwards, focusing on balance.

Variations and Progressions
- Walk at a normal pace forwards and backwards.
- Jog forwards and backwards.
- Walk forwards and backwards while tossing and catching a red ball with both hands or one hand.

Giant Ball Tennis

Setup
- Adult / other player stands 5-7 ft apart from child facing each other in an open space such as a driveway or garage.
- Adult / other player and child stand opposite of each other with a line in between, such as a crack in the driveway or a long rope (optional).
- Adult / other player should have a giant ball such as a oversized tennis ball, kickball, or basketball.

Goal
- Adult / other player and child toss giant ball to each other, letting the ball bounce before catching, to simulate a tennis ball bouncing.
- Toss from the sides of the body by rotating arms or torso.
- Toss should bounce on the opposite player’s side of line (optional).

Variations & Progressions
- Stand further apart.
- Catch ball in the air.
- Play doubles with a group of four players.

Trap the Ball

Setup
- Adult / other player stands 5-7 ft apart from child facing each other in an open space such as a driveway or garage.
- Child has a racquet, adult / other player has a red ball

Goal
- Adult / other player bounces ball to child with racquet, child uses free hand to trap ball on racquet strings.

Variations & Progressions
- Bounce ball to both sides of child.
- Child uses two racquets to trap ball between both racquets.

Bump Ups

Setup
- Child stands in open space such as a driveway or garage.
- Child should have racquet and red ball.
- Hold racquet in dominant hand with palm facing up.
- Racquet strings should be parallel to ground, if pointing up or down, ball will travel out of reach.

Goal
- Bump up ball in air using racquet strings, let bounce, and trap on racquet strings.
- Bump ball to eye level.

Variations & Progressions
- Continue bump ups after each bounce instead of catching ball.
- Hold racquet in dominant hand with palm facing down.
- Alternate bumps with a adult / other player.

Bump to Your Partner

Setup
- Adult / other player stands 5-7 ft apart from child facing each other in an open space such as a driveway or garage.
- Child has a racquet, the adult / other player has a red ball.
- Child squares their body to stand with non-dominant shoulder towards adult / other player to hit forehands, and racquet square to adult / other player.
- Racquet head should be pointed slightly to the ground.

Goal
- Adult / other player bounces ball to child, child uses forehand stroke to bump ball to adult / other player.
- Child should focus on pushing or lifting motion.
- Adult / other player should try to catch ball, or retrieve ball.

Variations & Progressions

-Child squares their body to stand with dominant shoulder towards adult / other player to hit backhands.
- Child starts facing adult / other player, and turns feet towards forehand or backhand side as adult / other player tosses ball.

Wall Hits

Setup
- Child stands 5-7 ft away from a sturdy structure such as a garage door or wall.
- Child should have racquet and orange ball (or foam ball to not damage wall).

Goal

- Bump ball to the wall, let bounce, and trap on racquet strings.
- Aim to hit the ball on the wall around waist to shoulder height.
- Once comfortable, continue hitting the ball instead of catching.

Variations & Progressions
- Alternate forehand and backhand strokes.
- Rally with an adult / other player.

Serve to the Wall

Setup
- Child stands 5-7 ft away from a sturdy structure such as a garage door or wall.
- Child should have racquet and orange ball (or foam ball to not damage wall).

Goal

- Drop ball and serve underhand to the wall.
- Toss ball in air and serve overhand to the wall.
- Aim to hit the ball on the wall around waist to shoulder height.

Variations & Progressions

- Serve to the wall and rally the next ball.
- Serve to the wall and alternate groundstrokes.

Volley Ralley

Setup
- Child stands in an open space such as a driveway or garage.
- Child should have racquet and orange ball.
- Hold racquet in dominant hand with palm facing up.

Goal

- Bump up ball in air and continue volley rally without letting ball hit the ground.
- Bump ball to eye level.

Variations & Progressions
- Hold racquet in dominant hand with palm facing down.
- Volley to a sturdy structure such as a garage door or wall (may use foam ball to not damage wall).
- Alternate volleys with an adult / other player.

Kid's Tennis Drills at Home

Target Tennis

Setup
- Players start on one side of net near service line.
- Set up various targets on opposite side of net, such as hula hoops, cones, hoppers, etc.
- Feeder stands on opposite side of net with hopper of red, low compression balls.

Goal
- Feeder tosses balls to player’s forehand, player hits groundstroke aiming for targets.
- Toss balls to player’s backhand.

Variations and Progressions
- Assign points to targets and play competitions as teams
- Players start further back in the court

Underhand and Overhead Serves

Setup
- Players spread out on service line with hoppers of red balls behind them.
- Start with non-dominant foot on or behind service line, and non-dominant shoulder towards net.
- Players use continental grip.

Goal
- Drop ball and serve underhand, hitting ball over the net
- Toss ball in air and serve overhand, hitting ball over the net.
- Serve ball anywhere over the net to start.
- Hit serves from both deuce and ad court.

Variations and Progressions
- Serve ball over net to opposite service box.

Dice Ralley

Setup
- Players start on opposite sides of net near service line.
- Players have hoppers of low compression, red balls behind them, or a designated feeder stands off-court with hopper.
- One or both players have a 6-sided die.

Goal

- Players shake dice, and rally ball using groundstrokes until they match number from dice.
- Designated feeder can start rally, or players can toss ball over net to partner to start.

Variations and Progressions
- Players can use one stroke per rally, such as forehands only or backhands only.

Directional Groundstrokes

Setup
- Players start one one side of net near service line on deuce or ad court side.
- Set up two targets on opposite side of net, one in middle of both deuce and ad court.
- Feeder stands on opposite side of net with hopper of medium compression, orange balls.

Goal

- Feeder tosses balls to player’s forehand, player hits directional groundstroke to target down the line or cross court.
- Toss balls to player’s backhand.

Variations and Progressions

- Keep player guessing by randomly calling out the direction while tossing the ball.
- Players start further back in the court.

Volley that Target

Setup
- Players start on one side of net 3 ft behind the net.
- Set up various targets on opposite side of net, such as hula hoops, cones, hoppers, etc.
- Feeder stands on opposite side of net with hopper of orange balls.
- Players use continental grip, hold racquet in front of them with racquet head at shoulder height.

Goal

- Feeder tosses balls to player’s forehand, player hits ball in the air, volleying to the targets.
- Toss balls to player’s backhand.

Variations and Progressions

- Assign points to targets and play competitions as teams
Players read the ball and decide if they will hit forehand or backhand volley.


Serves and Returns

Setup
- Players start on opposite sides of net on service line.
- Both players on deuce or ad court side.
- Serving player has hopper of orange balls behind them.

Goal
- Serving player serves ball over net to receiving partner.
- Receiving partner returns ball back over the net anywhere in the court.
- Serve from other side of the court.
- Switch roles, receiving player becomes serving player.

Variations and Progressions
- Receiving player returns ball crosscourt to server.
- Play out rally after the serve.

Tennis is a highly accessible sport to children of all ages, from toddlers to teenagers and beyond. A junior racquet and a few junior tennis balls can go a long way in helping to build developmental skills at a young age, as well as a passion for the lifelong sport of tennis. The most important aspect of junior tennis to remember is that it should be fun! Get creative with the kids and make up fun and silly drills and games, and it is guaranteed to be a good time. Tennis is currently one of the safest no-contact sports that can be played, so grab some junior equipment and the kids and head outside to a driveway or nearby tennis court and have some fun!

🎾 Written by Katelyn Zurn, staff writer and coach

Shop ADV Tennis Gear

Multi-Feel Dampeners

Multi-Feel Dampeners

Overgrips

Overgrips

Tennis Training Equipment

Tennis Training Equipment

Strings

Strings

Bundles & Gifts

Bundles & Gifts