ELITE Announces Dave Miley As Columnist
Dave Miley, former ITF Director of Development will contribute a series of Op-Ed essays under the headline, The State of The Game- Putting a Big TEN into TENNIS! Miley’s first contribution is a lengthy article (serialized into 5 mini articles) which focuses on the state of the game at various levels and points of interest touching on tennis at amateur, professional, national and club level, on tennis fans and industry insiders. His opinions and proposals are thought provoking, debatable and potentially confrontational. Due to Miley’s “street cred”, ELITE feels strongly that his viewpoints deserve consideration.
For 25 years Dave Miley worked for the ITF, 17 of which he served as Director of Development, the biggest department of the ITF. His responsibilities were wide ranging and included Junior Tennis, Senior Tennis, Wheelchair Tennis, Technical and Anti-doping. He also oversaw the jointly funded ITF/Grand Slam global development programs which included activities in high performance player development, coach education and participation/ club development. He was the person behind the ITF Tennis Play and Stay Campaign and the rule change for 10 and under tennis approved in 2010. Miley has also authored 7 coaching books. During his time at the ITF, he has travelled to over 140 nations and there are few people that know world tennis as well as him.
Today, Miley works as a consultant for the Asian Tennis Federation overseeing their development activities and for Universal Tennis, an organization that has developed a rating system for World Tennis. He also regularly presents at coaching conferences, most recently at the Australian Open Conference in Melbourne and the PTR conference in Hilton Head in February.
“I spent 25 years working for the ITF, an organization that does so much good for tennis worldwide. In doing a job that I loved, I travelled 130+ days per year, while acting as a single parent bringing up 3 young kids, and so I learned the art of juggling many things in my working and family life. When I resigned from the ITF in 2016, I not only had the chance to take some time off and to travel for fun (for a year everyday was the weekend!), but I also had the chance to reflect on some of the things that I had observed on my journey in tennis about how tennis is organized and promoted at all levels and I came up with 10 things that I think could make a difference.”
“I know from my experience in international tennis that the sport doesn’t easily change especially at the professional level and I am proud of the major changes I was involved with at the ITF such as the introduction of the combined ranking in junior tennis, and the coach education initiatives such as the launching of the distance learning platform Tennis Icoach and the launch of Tennis 10s and the rule change for 10 and under play.”
“It took 10 years to convince the ITF AGM to change the rules for 10 and under tennis mandating the use of slower balls for 10 and under competition. Believe it or not, this was only the 5th rule change in the history of tennis and came about because the ITF, the tennis industry, the professional tours and the major nations worked together in support. So, whilst I know from experience that change is not easy, I also know that when people in tennis work together, change is possible.”
“I realize that some of these TEN ideas might surprise people working in clubs, associations and federations and those involved in international tennis. All I ask is that the readers keep an open mind to what I am proposing. I certainly welcome constructive feedback to what I have put forward.”
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