Squash advice for junior squash equipment


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Squash advice for junior squash equipment

  1. 1. Squash Advice for Junior Squash EquipmentTechnical & tactical development of a kid degrades with adult equipment! Recommendations:Recommendations are ordered. Start at the top and move down the list according to the kidslevel and size. Racquets, balls and eyewear should be kids appropriate!CLICK HERE TO GET INSTANT ACCESS TO SUPERSIZE YOUR STRENGTHDownload this document if link is not clickable3 & 4 year olds:Racquets: Hand Racquets: The closer the racquet head is to the hand, the easier it is to makecontact with the ball. Hand racquets are the best way to get started and superior overconventional junior racquets. In addition, with hand racquets, there is no grip to worry about, sothe wrist is more stable, so the shots are more accurate. Best to use with foam balls.Junior Paddle Racquet: The closer the racquet head is to the hand, the easier it is to make contactwith the ball.Balls: -Beach Balls: Use the smallest ones you can find, because they are very light, they are veryslow and ideal for hitting the ball along the floor. -Foam Balls: We would start with the largestfoam balls as they are heavier than small ones which lets kids control the ball better, importantat this very young age. -Dunlop Mini Squash Ball: The smaller squash foam ball is lighter thantennis foam balls. Due to its lightness, it is easier to keep a rally going on the second or thirdbounce as the ball doesnt travel very far.5 & 6 year olds:Racquets: -Racquetball Racquets: The large racquet head that is close to the hand plus the
  2. 2. lightness are ideal to start rallying. -Speedminton Racquets: The racquet head is close to thehand and the racquet is light. The racquet head is smaller though than the racquetball racquet,contact is more difficult. -Dunlop Junior Squash Racquet: Racquet head is close to hand and theracquet is light. The racquet head is smaller though than the racquetball racquet, contact is moredifficult.Balls: -Dunlop Mini Squash Ball. Due to its lightness it is easier to keep a rally going on the secondor third bounce as the ball doesnt travel very far. The lightness of the ball also teaches kids touse a very relaxed swing as the ball doesnt travel very far without a fast swing. LowCompression Tennis Balls have an ideal rebound height of the floor for hits to learn a relaxedswing. -Blue Dot Squash Balls: Only use real squash balls if kids are able to rally with them for atleast 5 shots in a row.7 & 8 year olds:Racquets: -Junior Squash Racquets: Almost all junior squash racquets have about the same length(except the Black Knight junior racquet). We recommend junior squash racquets for 7 year olds.Dont be in a hurry to get too big a racquet. -Black Knight junior squash racquet: This is thelongest junior squash racquet and the ideal step up after using a regular size Junior Racquet likethe Dunlop junior squash.Racquet Balls: -Dunlop mini squash ball: great for newbies to squash, the slow bounce lets kidshave long rallies and time enough to place the ball. -Blue Dot Squash Balls: Ideal for kids whoalready played. I would discourage you from using the yellow dot squash ball as kids dont learn awell-rounded game with a double yellow dot squash ball that barely bounces.9 & 10 year olds:Racquets:Black Knight junior squash racquet: Keep using this one until the kid is tall enough touse a regular, light, adult size racquet. Dont be in a hurry to get an adult size racquet. The kidsusing the Black Knight junior racquet at this age have superior stroke mechanics compared tokids using adult size racquets. Or you can use any other junior racquet that has the same lengthas the Black Knight junior squash racquet.Balls:-Blue Dot Squash Balls: Dont be in a hurry to switch to the yellow dot squash balls. If thekids are not swinging at the ball with the yellow dot squash ball but merely lifting the ball to keepit in play, stay with the blue dot ball. -Dunlop Progress Squash Ball: The Progress ball is 6% larger,heavier and most important, has 20% longer hang-time than the Pro Squash Ball (ball drops 20%later). This gives kids more time to hit and get to the ball. I am not a big fan of the Dunlop Maxbeginners squash ball as it is too heavy.
  3. 3. 11 & 12 year olds:Racquets:Have kids use light (no more than ~ 135g) and head light adult racquets13 & older:Racquets:Any adult racquets, however we would stay away from very heavy, head weightedracquets. Good swing speed is better learned with light racquets.Important for coaching is to teach the kids in a way that lets them reach their full potentiallong-term if they choose to do so. Using inappropriate equipment and focusing on short-termresults will only limit your kids. The kids appropriate equipment makes it easier to develop thetechnique of an advanced adult game. Tactics can be learned and implemented faster because ofthe modified kids rules. Keep your kids play with the recommended equipment (& rules) for thementioned 1-2 years and discourage them from using regular adult size equipment (& rules) untiltheyre ready. It is important to use all appropriate equipment depending on ages together. Onlyusing kids squash racquets with regular double yellow dot squash balls and adult squash ruleshas minimal benefit and will impede their development. The kids need to use the appropriateracquet and ball and play with the appropriate rules for their age! The kids tactics changedramatically if they play with an adult racquet and low bouncing balls at a young age. The kidssquash stroke mechanics would also evolve into something quite different than the propersquash stroke mechanics needed for adult squash game. They would play a different game morelike super size squash. Kids equipment needs to be scaled to their growth and maturity stages. Ifkids play squash with kids appropriate equipment and rules, they are way more likely to developa squash game that is much closer to an adult game. A kid who can barely lift the racquet in timewill not develop great volley skills and tactics that come with it. Kids need to develop footworkpatterns that top players use. They should be taught the tactical strategies and shots that topplayers use as early as possible. With regular equipment and rules this is impossible. Kids learnvery quickly and very naturally and are capable of a high level of proficiency at a very young age.Dont ignore quality and only improve quantity. Kids are not better players because they cankeep a rally going 10x longer. Pushing the ball against the front wall with poor technique will limita players future potential dramatically. Using kids appropriate equipment and rules speeds upthe development of everything, technique, movement around the court, tactics and even mentalskills.Technical AdvantagesTactical advantages:
  4. 4. Rally ability advantagesTypically, with adult equipment and rules, coaches need to feed kids since they cant do thesethings with each other. There is a poor transfer from doing the skill in a feeding situation to agame-play situation. Just like the new holistic, game-based coaching used in the ASB rainbowgames, kids will be able to rally sooner by themselves by using kids racquets, balls and rules. Ifthey rally together, each kid will hit the ball more times in a shared lesson than they do during anindividual lesson. The majority of the hitting is between the two kids, not between the kids andcoach. The extra repetition speeds up the learning process. By pairing kids together, the coachgets to tackle some of the mental issues that arise, such as losing temper, giving up, and choking.The pressures that cause these negative behavior traits hardly ever happen when a coach playswith a kid - they only come up when kids play against each other. If kids are able to rally amongthemselves, it allows the coach to watch the kids action in more detail (because he doesnt haveto pay any attention to hitting the ball), giving the coach a better chance of identifying the truecause of a technical or tactical error. Because of this, the coach can get to the route of a problemfar quicker. Once the problem has been identified, it also allows the coach to jump in with one ofthe kids while the other one watches - to demonstrate what to look for.Less InjuriesThe final technical advantage is injury reduction. The physical demands of the game on juniorplayers has increased over the last decade. The speed of the game and the technique required tohit the ball harder with a shorter and shorter swing are being utilized by younger and youngerplayers. This can be very hard on a developing body. The constant swinging of adult squashracquets especially if playing with double yellow dot balls, which barely bounces, over the greaterdistances of the adult sized court, creates unnecessary wear and tear on young bodies.SummaryEnsure children have the best development path possible by using kids appropriate equipment.The improper equipment may result in younger players learning motor patterns that need to beoverhauled later, causing a plateau in development that they may not recover from.Super size SquashImagine being half your size with half your strength and age 7, playing super-size squash on aregular squash court with regular squash rules. Your squash racquet touches the ground whenyou hold it down at your side and you can only comfortably lift it with 2 hands. The regular doubleyellow dot squash ball most commonly sold barely bouncing. How difficult and motivating would
  5. 5. it be to play "super size squash"? It would be challenging to say the least. Good coaches wouldntteach "Super size squash". Success would be limited, transfer skills to an adult game would bepoor, tactics and technique developed would be inappropriate. Consider the size and strength ofthe kids! All major sports adjust kids equipment. So should you for kids learning squash.CLICK HERE TO GET INSTANT ACCESS TO SUPERSIZE YOUR STRENGTHDownload this document if link is not clickableArticle source = ezinearticles.com/?Squash-Advice-for-Junior-Squash-Equipment