Mary Pat is a pillar in the Southern California tennis community, and a staple fixture at the Calabasas Tennis and Swim Center. For me personally, Mary Pat is a constant reminder that no matter what one persons craft is and no matter how long one continues at the same profession, there will always be room to improve and develop that craft. It seems easy that someone in Mary Pats position, where she is 20+ years into the profession, that it would be easy to become complacent. She sets a great example though of constantly introducing new ideas, and injecting a genuine energy into her work. Moreover, the result is an extremely large clientele who are ALL overly satisfied with her product, and who ALL seem to continually get better! She is loyal, caring, and a real blessing to the tennis community.
My daughter is an avid tennis player at 18 years old and her first instructor was Mary Pat. When someone watches her play, they comment on her classic, beautiful strokes and her gift for doubles and net play. Not every tennis player has the skill to be a good teacher but Mary Pat has that. She gave the gift of beautiful strokes and a love of the game to my daughter.
Once in a great while you run across an inspirational teacher who not only makes it easy to learn, but also makes you want to do your best whether it be playing tennis or living your life; Mary Pat is such a teacher. There is no problem in tennis that Mary Pat cannot help you solve. When I first met Mary Pat there was no way that I was going to play doubles; too much apologizing and guilt. After a few clinics in doubles technique and strategy, I only want to play doubles because its so much fun. They say you cant teach an old dog new tricks; well, I am here to say that Mary Pat can.
It has been my extreme pleasure to have taken lessons from Mary Pat for many years. Her teaching methods and lessons in life go hand in hand. It always amazes me how she can solve any tennis problems I might have with such simple remedies. She continues to keep her teaching methods fresh by exploring new and exciting ideas. I have learned such valuable lessons in life as well as in tennis because of her. I value you her not only as a tennis professional, but also as a friend.
I first got serious about tennis after reading Tim Galloways book The Inner Game of Tennis. Mary Pat is the only instructor I know that could convert that book to the practice of tennis and take it beyond. In over 20 years of taking lessons and drills from Mary Pat, I am consistently amazed at how her instruction is constantly evolving and growing in depth. If I had to use two words to sum up Mary Pat, it would be fundamentals and flexibility. That would be the fundamentals of footwork, body motion, and racquet along with the flexibility of the mind to constantly adjust and grow.
Mary Pat notices every detail about your overall game then she makes small changes that lead to big improvements in playing. We all want to borrow her brain when were playing tough matches against big opponents because of her ability to see every detail.
Tennis is more than a sport, more than executing the shots, more than beating the opponent; it is a life philosophy. As such, if you are lucky enough to get a lesson with Mary Pat, you are also given a life lesson. As a tennis teacher/coach, Mary Pat astounds her students by her knowledge and care. You can be playing 3 courts away from her teaching court, with numerous windscreens between you, and while fully focusing on the student on her court she will still let you know that you had the wrong grip on the shot you just missed. Every aspect of the game is distilled to its intention, whether it is the footwork, swing mechanism or body direction. Every movement and exercise is with the purpose of playing the game well and to protect our bodies; to be aware of our core and supporting muscles and make them more efficient. And that aha moment extends past the tennis court. In our cluttered lives, perhaps focus is her greatest lesson.
I have had the honor of knowing Mary Pat Faley, MP, for over twenty years. I first met her when she was coaching one of my best friends, so I had many opportunities on the court, in lessons, and in drill classes to see her work her magic. It wasnt until I became a tennis instructor myself that I realized her magic is actually her endless enthusiasm and complete dedication to developing each and every one of her students. Her incredible knowledge, experience, and personality, and her innate ability to teach and relay information in such a fun and exciting way has inevitably produced thousands of tennis lovers of all ages and levels around the country. MP not only teaches tennis while on the court, she never does just that. She teaches many valuable life lessons that leave her students not just knowing, but also believing they can.
Inspiration and determination Two life and game-changing strokes that Mary Pat Faley teaches every day. There are some teachers that drill your forehand, your backhand, volleys, etc, but MP gave me far more than tennis lessons; She inspired me to love the game and showed me through example that determination will keep you coming back for more!!! A true coach is also a mentor. They are the one person you want to call when you win or when you lose. Through their words, they inspire passion and determination. For over 15 years, Mary Pat has taught my children and me life lessons that we will always remember. I will forever be indebted to her. I now play the game, but Mary Pat gave me my game!!
Tennis racquet $150, tennis outfit $85, tennis balls $5, Mary Pats knowledge and simplified instruction of the game of tennis priceless.
For many years, Mary Pat has helped me to improve my tennis game, both mentally and physically. Her philosophy and methods of teaching have taught me not only to be present and focused on the court, but in everyday life as well. I highly recommend this book!
I truly believe Mary Pat has a special gift for teaching. She can see things others do not, and she can explain things in a unique, clear, and refreshing way. Her techniques were foreign to me, as I was a reactive player Old school Cant teach an old dog new tricks kind of student. She taught me to only think in threes. In simplifying the learning process, she divided the court into three; each stroke into three and this method has totally reduced brain clutter! She has turned me into a proactive player who enjoys tennis more than ever! I am playing at a 4.5 level at 48 years old Thanks Faley!
Mary Pat Faleys 1, 2, 3 program really works. Apply her philosophy to your game today and you will experience a tremendous difference. She taught me how to serve in 10 minutes.
One of the things I find most amazing about Mary Pat is her unique ability to watch several players at one time and quickly assess the problems. She has a great eye and knows your mistakes even before you make them. Her corrections are simple and easy to incorporate in your game with long-lasting results. She is the drill master!
MP is an amazing tennis pro who can quickly assess your weakness and clearly show why and how to improve it. There is no one like her with such great teaching skills, humor and level of energy. MP is the goddess of tennis!!!
Mary Pat Faley is off the charts when it comes to imparting tennis knowledge and strategies. She eats, sleeps, and breathes the game. After 15 years as student and friend, I have determined the source of all this energy: her incredibly positive attitude. No goal is too high; no skill is out of reach. After the book, it has to be Mary Pat in person.
At age 11, Mary Pat was my first tennis coach. After working with her for six months, I went from beginner player to my first national tennis tournament. There are many tennis pros that can teach you the mechanics of tennis, but there are very few that can help you find such a love for the game. Thank you MP, you inspired me not only throughout my competitive tennis years, but also as a teaching pro today.
Sometimes it takes an instructor four different ways of saying the same thing to make a student understand. If youre Mary Pat, you only have to say it once because she already figured out how you, as an individual, learn.
Mary Pat is a very professional, engaging and astute tennis professional. Although I have only known her for a couple of years, I have been most impressed with her ability to quickly diagnose a players problems, and provide suggestions to correct the problem or issue her tennis student is having. I had heard about her for some time (that she was the best tennis instructor around), and when I had problems with tennis elbow I decided to seek her advice. She promptly provided me with ways to address my condition and assisted me with the techniques I needed to prevent further injury and become a more proficient tennis player. As an educator myself, I am most impressed with her knowledge, her demeanor, and her love of the sport. She sets a high bar for her students and is a wonderful role model. I feel so fortunate to be one of her students.
Mary Pat has been a true mentor of mine and has been extremely influential in my tennis career as well as my life. From an early age, she has taught me so many important lessons that I still carry with me today as a father and as a coach. Mary Pats dedication to her students, friends and colleagues is unparalleled in the industry and I feel extremely privileged to have been associated with her.
Mary Pat Faley (MP as she is known) is the best tennis teacher I have had the pleasure of learning from in all these years of playing tennis. Her back to basics philosophy has helped me to hone my game. I find that when my game feels like it needs a punch her 1.2.3. Philosophy puts me back on track. Men and women find her teaching methods and drills challenging, and she is wonderful with whatever level of tennis you play and lifts it up. I always leave her class feeling invigorated and excited to try the new/old lessons I had forgotten.
Mary Pat exhibits professionalism on the tennis court. Her teaching skills are such that one gets the results expected. Her knowledge and skills run the gamut from technical expertise to being prepared to lead and teach others. Her skills also prepare you with self-confidence that helps you on and off the tennis court.Tennis has helped my overall basic conditioning program by implementing more core training and strength conditioning exercises into my daily routine. Strength and endurance are essential for speed and power. In addition, proper conditioning will always prevent injuries. Therefore, all the benefits that a quality instructor such as Mary Pat, offers have greatly improved my tennis game and my overall life.
Mary Pat teaching pro extraordinaire. With her new book, it will get you up and keep you up playing tennis for fun and health.
Both my daughter and I have taken tennis lessons from Mary Pat. I had not played tennis for over 20 years when I started with her. She is able to break it down for each person individually. She understands how each of us processes information and teaches us accordingly. My daughter was a beginner when Mary Pat started teaching her. Her tennis skills improved dramatically in such a short period of time.
I have known Mary Pat Faley for over ten years as a tennis instructor, mentor and friend. She brings an extraordinarily high degree of creativity and innovation to the sport of tennis transforming her tennis lessons into life lessons. On the court, she is able to tap into and bring out the best in a persons physical and mental abilities, then teach how to assimilate those strengths into everyday life. Her singles strategies help empower personal independence, while her doubles strategies concentrate on teamwork and convergent strategy. Mary Pat Faley is a real ace!
After double hip replacements, Mary Pat brought me back to tennis with excellent instruction and personal inspiration.
You have help improve my game so much, I still hear your comments when I play, such as toss the ball to the net post.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank you so much for all the great tennis lessons and drills. Youve been teaching me for 8 years, and my nine-year-old son for 4 years. Youve brought my tennis level from a 3.0 beginner to a strong 4.5. I truly appreciate your unique and special teaching skills. You have an incredible ability to identify a problem and quickly fix it. You are also doing outstanding coaching work with my son, Ori, who is already participating in USTA junior tournaments. With your individual attention and helpful attitude towards tennis, not only youve helped him improve his technique but also helped him develop a greater passion and confidence for competing at the junior tennis tournaments.
As a student of Mary Pat for the past 5 years or so, I can say with all certainty that I have definitely become a different tennis player because of her. Something about her teaching techniques that make you feel, 1000 percent improved once you are done with your lesson, and that has helped me with my confidence level, my game, my athletic abilities and my overall well being as a person. Once you have had her as a pro, it is almost impossible to have someone else be your teacher. I cannot wait to get my hands on her book so I can learn and implement everything in the book.
I have taken lessons from Mary Pat for over 15 years. The thing that always amazes all of us is that week after week she still teaches us something new. We accuse her of holding out on us!!! We have no doubt we still have much to learn from Mary Pat!!
Mary Pat has been an inspiration to both my teenage boys throughout the years. Her style, teaching methods, and exuberance have inspired my children to learn, work hard and enjoy tennis. One boy is in college now, and my other boy is playing on his high school tennis team. Mary Pat has taught my kids how to set goals, and through hard work and practice, how to achieve those goals. She has brought out the best in my kids, and they continue to enjoy tennis as a sport they will play throughout their lives for both pleasure and physical fitness.
I learned to play tennis with Mary Pat 15 years ago. I was 46 years old. It was my major turning point of my life. Not only was she my coach, she was and is my friend. Learning tennis with Mary Pat has given me such confidence in everything that I do. I will be eternally grateful to her always.
You return phone calls, start on time and strike the right mix of talk vs. tennis. That might not sell many books, but I have clients who like me as much for those traits as my financial abilities. Plus, you are one of the few people who ask about Richard, my son, and hows hes doing. I was not sure how to translate a beautiful soul into a life lesson, but here are my comments. An amazing combination of perception and technique. Mary Pat quickly identifies one or two key areas to focus on and has a huge arsenal of tips and methods to hone your skill. She has vastly improved my game and the confidence I have walking onto the court and knowing I can always turn things around on the court. Its an approach I like to bring to life off the court, too. She has shown me that attitude can really affect your altitude.
Within a few minutes of my first lesson with Mary Pat, she was able to diagnose exactly what I was doing wrong and showed me how to improve in a way that was clear and precise. Four years later, she still offers effective guidance and tips during every weekly lesson to help me improve. Mary Pat provides guidance and tips that precisely address whatever improvement I need to make. Her suggestions are clear and easy to incorporate into game situations. I hear her voice in my head as I play, and it has made my performance better than ever. Mary Pats teaching methods are reliable, effective, and most of all, fun!
I am a tennis professional and I met Mary Pat when I moved to the west coast last year. I had heard many wonderful things about her so I jumped into one of her drills. Her approach and teaching methods were both fresh and innovative. Over the last year, I have had the opportunity to get to know Mary Pat better both as a colleague and as a student. The way that she teaches brings a new approach to the old tried and true ways of teaching. We are moving forward faster than imaginable in sports with our equipment. The technology today is making our racquets better and better. Mary Pat is moving forward in her approach to teaching right along with all of this new technology. Not a lot of professionals in our industry have the talent and ability to change and move forward. Not only does Mary Pat do this but, she does it with her own brand of humor and fun. I have used her Im proud to say on the court when I teach. There are innumerable techniques and ideas that I have learned from her over the last year. My students and I are very grateful for what she continues to contribute to the game of tennis. They say the best teacher is the one that can teach the teacher. Well, Mary Pat has done that with interest. Thank you MP!
MP, as we call her, is the rarest of instructors. She is the perfect combination of kindness, humor and criticism. She is able to pinpoint specific problems with your game and correct them with her concrete methods and solutions. Her positive attitude and her love of the game make her a true teacher.
I have known Mary Pat Faley for 33 years. We first met playing high school tennis together. We both took private lessons at a local club and we were an undefeated high school doubles team! We were taught old school tennis; turn, step and hit. Mary Pat and I went our different ways for college and it wasnt until after I had my second daughter in preschool, that I went back to the tennis courts. Mary Pat was a teaching pro at the club I joined, but it took some time before I checked my pride and took a lesson from my former doubles partner! Why did I wait? Mary Pat is a master at teaching tennis technique. She explains technical information from a common sense point of view, breaking it down into sequences of 3 and then puts it all back together. She is easy to understand and has been most instrumental and invaluable in improving my game throughout the years. Everything she has taught me is in this book.
“Mary Pat’s clinic is fun, fast and focused. She does not miss a thing – I think she must have eyes behind her head! There is positive reinforcement, attention to detail and no down time – every minute is well spent working on something. She is the best of the best.”
“Mary Pat taught me things that none of my male instructors could, how to work around my female anatomy (specifically my breasts) in making my backhand. Her wisdom in this department has also translated into my personal life, remembering that men (my husband included) don’t understand the female anatomy, more than what they want or like about it, so we woman need to have our girlfriends who can help us navigate our lives in this world. Many thanks to MP for her wisdom on and off the court.”
“I just loved (or hated) how she would push me to my limit each time I trained with Mary Pat! It has not only helped with my mental toughness in sports, but with everything in my life as well! I truly feel like a stronger person mentally and physically after all my many, many tennis lessons as an adolescent! I look forward to having my children learn & train from her!”
“When I first moved to Calabasas, the thing to do was to join the Calabasas Tennis Club and get lessons with Mary Pat Faley. I’m thinking; I don’t play tennis so why should I do that? But the alienation I felt from not joining the club or taking lessons from Mary Pat was more than I could bear, so I got on the waiting list for both the club and MP’s clinics and it was downhill from there…but in a good way!
When I finally got in the club, I would sit by the sidelines and watch MP teach and I could not believe she did not tie her shoelaces! I thought to myself; when I get lessons from her, she is going to have to tie her shoes! I thought for sure my artful placing of the ball would have to be the thing that would make her tie her shoe laces so she could run down my ball, but before I even hit the ball she was standing in the place where it was going to land! Well many clinics and lessons later and in 100 degree plus heat (on some days) later, she never tied her shoes for me or anyone else…
Then one day when I was having a lesson, I asked MP if she wanted to ride the 600-mile bike ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles to raise money for people with AIDS? She said to me, “Melin, you don’t even have a bike!” and I said, “So, I’m going to get one and so should you, so let’s do it!” And we did!
MP was so strong and inspirational on the rides and on the multiple training rides that she mentored many riders to continue riding even on their darkest days of riding. She even climbed the biggest hill over ten times on the ride in order to get riders to continue even though she blew out her Achilles tendon. Today she is still an avid cyclist; considering she has had multiple accidents and has even overcame DVT. She continues to teach tennis and motivate people to push their limits without regret.
I’m happy to have known MP for all this time and she has not abandoned me when I left the Calabasas life after divorce and moved to the Westside, we continue to be friends.”
“She is a true inspiration and I wonderful person who knows no boundaries.”
“Mary Pat is a brilliant tennis instructor. She has this bag of tricks that is so magical. It transforms you from randomly getting lucky in your games to becoming proactive skillful tennis player. This happens because she makes it so simple to understand the details of each move. It’s incredibly helpful when she breaks it down into little steps of simple tennis moves. One of my favorites is to watch the ball bounce and again when it’s in contact with your racquet.”
“Tennis has been an important part of my life. From the red clay courts and white balls in Europe, to the perfect California tennis weather, tennis is what I love to play. Last year, after healing a shoulder injury, I needed help to re-learn a correct serving motion. Mary Pat analyzed the problem and with her 1 – 2 – 3 methods – she never introduces more then three changes, one at a time – my serve is back! Actually I have several serves now and I’m very happy!!”
“Where other instructors tended to give up on me because they thought that I was either not trying or that I was not good enough, Mary Pat said nonsense to that. After seven years of lessons with her, I have consistently improved, raising my level and loving tennis.”
“Mary Pat Faley is one of the best and knowledgeable tennis teaching professionals that I have ever had the privilege to teach with. She is always trying to learn and teach new methods for her students. Besides learning new techniques, Mary Pat is the epitome of a true teaching professional. She’s well dressed, on time, and always personable. Without a doubt, she is one of the best in the U.S.”
“I have been a member of Mary Pat’s Thursday morning drill class for over eight years and yet every week she has a new challenge. This is due to Mary-Pat’s ingenuity and smart way of teaching competitive tennis.”
“It all started at the age of four. My mom would bribe me to go to Mary Pat’s ‘Tennis Training for Toddlers,’ and she promised me every time after tennis we would go to Baskin Robbins! Ten years later, I look back and thank my mother so much, because if it was not for Mary Pat’s encouragement and intelligence in tennis, I do not know where I would be right now. Tennis has directed me in so many directions, that it still astonishes me everyday. MP is the most positive women I know. I have never seen her in a bad mood, and she has the attitude of a winner, because she is one. I feel absolutely honored to be able to contribute some of my gratitude into her book, and I will thank her till the day I die about how much she has stepped up my tennis game. ”
“Mary Pat is a true motivator. She keeps you going, constantly helps you improve, and makes it all great fun at the same time. She brings a combination of spirit and seriousness to the court — There’s no doubt that I’ve learned some great shots from her! More importantly, though, she has taught me that the real game is to never give up but to smile back at the challenge and hold your ground. That’s helped me time and time again, in tennis and in life.”
“Mary Pat, the tennis doctor… She can diagnose and cure your sick tennis shots.”
“The paths to success in all facets of life share universal truths. It’s the different languages that cover those paths and keep them hidden from most. Mary Pat Faley does an excellent job of articulating these universal paths to success in not only the sport of tennis, but life.”
“I came to tennis late and via the backyard. I developed many bad habits and gave myself tennis elbow and shoulder pain fairly quickly. Mary Pat’s private lessons and weekly drill classes taught me the correct techniques and have made tennis one of the most enjoyable parts of my life today. She has completely changed how I think, see, hit and move to the ball and on the court. I’m in my tenth year of drills with Mary Pat and she continues to challenge me and to improve my game. She is a fabulous teaching pro.”
“It was a beautiful sunny day and I knew I was in love with LA! Arriving from a Boston blizzard I pondered what activity I could participate in both day and night, “Tennis!” Since the early, 1980’s, Mary Pat has coached me from a novice to a competitor. MP, I refer to her as “Master Perfectionist,” makes small changes that make big improvements, instantly!”
“I have known MP for at least 15 years and I have always learned and enjoyed at our get tog ethers; whether they are on the tennis court for a lesson or over a cup of coffee discussing life. She brings concepts together for me so they are so easy to see and easy to implement into my stroke or my life. I so appreciate that quality in her.”
Mary Pat is:
1. A true student of the game and a student of life.
2. One who understands the “give and take” between teacher and student. i.e. learning from each other.
3. One who understands that learning be it in the realm of tennis, be it in our own life experiences, is an on going process in which we are always striving to become better
4. One possessing telepathic abilities. M.P.’s open mind allows her to receive and emit experiences and an understanding between the coach to student and the student to coach.
5. The first coach who got me to trust myself, my own ability, to let go and drop my defenses so I could be more receptive and open to learning by listening, seeing and feeling
6. By “getting into the student’s head” she helped me initiate a gradual process of getting rid of the “extra baggage” many of us bring to the court that we are not often even aware of at first.
7. One who has 360-degree vision. You could be playing a match four courts away or more and M.P. would see something you were doing or not doing. Uncanny!
8. One who knows how to keep the game simple and relate it to our own personal knowledge, experience, and terms. She could break it down in a manner that made sense to us, give us a key word that helped our minds and bodies to comprehend the concept, see it and most importantly for me, to FEEL it. Then we could build on these basic fundamentals, while always going back to them.
9. A coach who always makes it fun; and enjoys the process herself; and she has taught us to enjoy the process–the pushing ourselves, the exertion and on-going effort, something she has always done in her own life–see how far you can go, take on the challenge. Know yourself and know your student. WE have learned from her the joy in the pain of maximum effort.
10. One who has the ability to connect to a student no matter what age, level, gender, personality or ability.
11. One who is neither judgmental nor arbitrary, i.e. “My way and what I say is the only way.” M.P. has always been patient and willing to explain the “Why?” to me. She can diffuse my frustration and conflict and if necessary at times lead step by step. Never has she ever become angry or impatient. On the contrary, her encouragement got me through some difficult times. She seemed to understand my “history”; and worked with me to overcome negative influence in my personal life. That is how I came to trust her and then myself because she believed in me.
12. The coach in my life who became the turning point for me in my learning curve, because somewhere along the way I had become self-conscious and afraid to make a mistake. I had lost that freedom of letting go and allowing my ability free rein. I guess what I’m trying to say is that Mary Pat helped me get back to a point in time where I started trusting myself, my body, my own ability to learn and thus get better.
13. A coach who is always herself looking to improve and develop her own self-awareness, which transfers to her awareness of her students so that she is continually redeveloping refining her teaching strategies, methods, techniques. M.P. gets it that tennis represents an ever changing form of energy much like our own lives and the world we live in.
“At age 11, Mary Pat was my first tennis coach. After working with her for six months, I went from beginner player to my first national tennis tournament. There are many tennis pros that can teach you the mechanics of tennis, but there are very few that can help you find such a love for the game. Thank you MP, you inspired me not only throughout my competitive tennis years, but also as a teaching pro today.”