4F Tennis NAME

4F stands for the FOUR sequential methodical FUNDAMENTALS as taught by the late great Welby Van Horn. We teach the GreatBase system, of which Welby Van Horn had a strong influence on Steve Smith, the founder of the GreatBase System of Systems.


Welby Van Horn felt that you must learn the following fundamentals in the following sequence: balance, grips, strokes (including timing and tempo) and, finally strategy.


  • Balance will produce good body control,
  • good body control with sound grips and strokes will generate good racquet control,
  • good body control and good racquet control along with learning the proper timing and tempo will result in good ball control
  • and finally, good ball control with the learning and implementation of winning strategy makes a complete player.


In other words, in order to learn to maximize a persons tennis playing ability, ball control is essential and good ball control is dependent on learning the fundamentals of balance grip and strokes.


Steve Smith on Welby Van Horn:


"Welby Van Horn is a master teacher of the fundamentals. Like basketball, tennis at the world class level has evolved and become more athletic and at the grass root level fundamentals are disappearing. Without having worked for Welby, I would never have had six former students win National NCAA titles. Study Welby's book and be able to truly learn and teach tennis."


WEISS, E. Secrets of a True Tennis Master, 1st ed Sorrento Publishing, 2007


Steve Smith Talks About Welby Van Horn