National Tennis Academy Tennis Programme

A photo of the junior international player Maia Lumsden playing tennis

Tennis Scotland is delighted to operate one of the National Academies at the University of Stirling.

The National Academy in Scotland is part of the LTA’s vision to make British tennis one of the most respected nations in the world for player development.

Tennis Scotland deliver the National Academy in partnership with the University of Stirling, the sportscotland Institute of Sport and Dollar Academy to provide a level of coaching and service provision which sets new standards within the sport and transforms the development of future professional British tennis champions. The academy will be first major transition point in the Player Pathway as a player moves from the National Player Pathway to the Pro Tour Pathway.

Who is it for?

The National Academy is for players aged 14 to 18 (although some players may join from age 11 in exceptional circumstances).

The maximum number of players in each National Academy will be capped at 16, selecting Britain’s highest potential juniors.

Visit the Player Pathway section to find out more about National Academies and the pathway for aspiring young players.

What will the programme be like?

The National Academy is an inspiring, holistic and highly transformative environment. The Head Coach is responsible for leading and establishing the culture across the programme as well as developing and delivering a multi-disciplinary, Individual Development Plan (IDP) for each player.

The IDP is created and delivered by coaches and practitioners across the programme and will be interdisciplinary; combining technical, tactical, athletic, psycho-social and lifestyle objectives. The IDP ensures the holistic development of each individual as both a player and a person is achieved and measured.

Creating an Inspirational Pro-style Training Environment

The National Academy delivers a pro-style, interdisciplinary training environment tailored to specifically prepare players for the demands of pro tennis.

Whilst the University of Stirling currently provides an excellent performance environment, the pending facility investment will deliver a truly world class setting from summer 2020 onwards and the players will be training in an environment where they have everything they need to succeed. However, facilities alone do not create an inspirational pro-style training environment and this needs to be cultivated by the staff and players involved.

To create the right training environment, the National Academy at Stirling is integrated with the Tennis Scotland National Player Programme (NPP) and the University of Stirling International Sports Scholarship Programme (ISSP) players and coaches to create a motivational atmosphere on the court. Off the court the players will be rubbing shoulders with elite athletes from a wide range of sports via the partnership with sportscotland Institute of Sport, for example, Olympic medallists, Commonwealth Games champions and European record holders.

High quality, best with best sparring will be one of the real strengths of the National Academy due to the integration of the ISSP and NPP players as well as pupils from Merchiston Castle School’s Tennis Academy Scotland all enhancing training sessions. The volume of quality squad training, match play and player led sessions will contain a mixture of the above players which will provide great variety and high quality training for all. 

Science and Medicine

Sports Science and Sport Medicine (SSSM) support is delivered by the sportscotland Institute of Sport.

The institute is led by Mike Whittingham, sportscotland Director of High Performance, and its network of high performance managers and specialists.

The sportscotland Institute of Sport have 20 years of experience providing full integrated performance expertise to Scottish and British Sport. Their services at the National Academy will include expert sport science and medicine practitioner support alongside world class technology.

Further information on SSSM provision will be available in due course.