This is a very common question among students visiting resorts and taking private lessons with us. They want to know the best way to improve when they are back home after being motivated to play more. There is no specific answer as every case is different but we usually recommend a combination, here’s why.
Private lessons are great for working on something specific whether it is technique or strategy. A good coach is able to focus on you and what you need most and explain why you need it. If you feel like you are taking private lessons and not making much progress try 1 lesson with another coach and see how it goes. We resonate with different people and their instruction more or less based on a variety of factors.
However, taking only private lessons limits your ability to improvise and play against a realistic opponent. You need to figure some things out on your own on court and get used to unpredictable and different styles.
Group lessons are a great option because you get some instruction and either a really good work out or social experience and often at a decent price. Here you can meet other players who you might want to play with on your own at another time, increasing your network of playing partners and/or doubles partners. Some group lessons are focused (cardio, doubles, serving etc.) and others are open, sort of like a social with a bit of instruction. All are good, try to attend one at your club!
As mentioned above, just playing with other people is very good for your development because you have to adapt and discover things for yourself on court. Tennis is a very individual sport and your mental ability to decipher what your opponent is doing or to coach yourself is what separates a lot of club players from being at the next level. Find someone to get out on court with and have fun!