PADELMBA Maestro Pablo Franco Durán has revealed his delight at the success of his recent Game4Padel master classes.
The Spanish coach and former top-200 WPT ace has been coaching for 15 years with his clients including the Qatar national team. Based in Belgium, Pablo has been in demand all over the continent as his much sought-after Master Class series has wowed our game’s great and good.
So we are delighted to share that the Padelmba coach to the coaches has conducted three master classes, including coaching clinic and exhibition match, at our venues at Bloom Heathrow London, Ipswich, and Broxbourne, in conjunction with Game4Padel National Development Manager James Rose.
It is a relationship that Pablo was pleased to confirm is one that is set to flourish and he revealed: “This is the beginning and we hope to roll this out across the UK and in the future we have big plans for a different opportunity for me.
“This all started through my sponsors, Adidas, who asked me to do a clinic in Westfield, London, last November and it was there that I met with James (Rose) and we first started to discuss this exciting new project with Game4Padel in the UK. I love the project and think Game4Padel are the No.1 padel company in the UK and I am just excited to do master classes with G4P.
“We have now done three master classes at Bloom Heathrow London (above), Ipswich, and Broxbourne and when they promoted them, in less than 1-hour, they were full. Also the feedback was really positive and nice and the people very enthusiastic and they asked me when I was coming back again which was very pleasing.”
When it comes to the ethos behind Pablo’s master class and the points of difference that are making his services the talk of the continent he explained: “I try to show students what padel is and not just the shots or the tactics – I really try to help them to understand what padel is!
“It is not a case of just playing the ball here or there – it is why we do this because everything has a reason. I try to get my students to understand why they are doing something not just a case of I have to play a volley to a point on the court. For me I believe that when you understand the sport you are playing you play better and you play smarter!”
Dissecting his sessions in more detail it is clear that the Padelmba maestro provides an all embracing padel experience.
He said: “So to start I do a good intensity warm up to lift the focus for the lesson and try to include a game with conditions so my students are having fun at the same time as they are warming up. Then after 15 minutes they are totally ready and focused and it is: ‘Now let’s Work!’
“I have a maximum of four students on court for a 90-minute lesson but if there are three, it is perfect as we can be more focused on the technique and then the tactics and I can also play with the students and give them tips about position, also about selection of shot. So three students is perfect as with the coach playing with his students it lifts things to a higher level in terms of focus and learning.
“Also one of my targets is that the student must be tired when they finish the master class but they must also have learnt and enjoyed that process. If they don’t learn then we have a problem – this is my view!”
Yet while as a Padelmba ‘Maestro’ coach Pablo may be at the peak of the coaching game, his humility and determination to keep learning is impressive.
Explaining this he shared: “I always try to learn new things. For example in the lockdown in 2020 we were totally closed down but we organised a video chat group in Whats App with 25 top coaches from all over Spain, running two days a week for two hours. We covered everything; tips for the volley, tips for position, tips for being a top player, tips to be a top coach and after that we had created an excellent dossier with so much information which can help you just be a better coach.
“My opinion is that as a coach you have to always generate something more, learn new things and be aware that padel is always developing and that there is a constant evolution of the game.
“If you look at the top matches on the WPT Tour and FIP Tours now the matches are really fast with two three shots and then the smash to kill the point. Ten years ago it was different – slower, more lobs, more Bandejas.
“So for me as a coach I have to know what padel is now and what it will be in the future and so you have to keep refreshing your ideas and put them out on the court with your students. You must never sleep when it comes to coaching padel!”
The good news is that Pablo will be back in the UK between 8 and 12 September for master classes at Bloom Heathrow London and The Padel Yard, Wandsworth.
Watch this space!
Follow Pablo on Instagram @pablofrancoduran