Christophe Semmartin, coach of several of the best players in France such as Thibaud Pech, Benoît Theard, Carla Touly, Charlotte Soubrié, Bastien Blanqué, Kévin Tournemire, Nicolas Trancart, Nada Majdoubi and Louisa André, is an emblematic figure in Toulouse Padel Club.
During Interclubs N1 2023, Christophe Semmartin shared his vision of coaching.
The importance of group sessions
“Every day, we are on the ground, all together, adjusting the little details. The goal is to optimize performance for the weekend. For example, Thibaud [Pech] and Benoît [Theard] are excellent sparring partners for Bastien, which helps improve their game.”
“Our focus is on tactics, technique and above all mentality. We are working to approach matches well, identifying and correcting recurring errors.”
A difference between players
“Coaching men and women has significant differences. I enjoy coaching all levels, from beginners to experienced.
With women a more positive approach is necessary, while with men one can be more direct from time to time. My main goal is to build their confidence. In my speech, 90% is positive, the rest aims to point out the small details. In a tournament like this, the main thing is that they are well prepared mentally.”
“When two teams I coach meet, I refrain from coaching. I am happy when my players compete, it means they have progressed well in the tournament.”
The secrets to becoming a good coach?
“The key is to have the chance to work with talented and humble players. All the players I coach have a character that suits me. They are kind people, attentive, without oversized egos. They are caring and work together to improve.”
Charlotte Soubrié and the rotations…
“I have a pretty cool anecdote when we know today the level of Charlotte Soubrié.
At the beginning, when she launched into the padel, she didn't want to hear about the rotations at the padel. She said she would never make it. In the end, never has a player achieved a rotation so quickly. padel. The proof in three balls, she managed to achieve her first rotation. And today, she has even become a good defender.”
2023 assessment? Ambitions for 2024?
“The results for 2023 are very positive. Bastien was champion of France and obtained good results. Thibaud and Benoît have finally reached a level of play that reflects their potential, after 2-3 years of good play without being able to maintain it over a full tournament. Charlotte and Carla also had exceptional performances, beating Jessica Ginier and Lucile Pothier in the final of a P2000 in Toulouse, and putting in great performances at the French championships.”
“For 2024, the goal is for the players to continue working hard with the right attitude on the pitch. I don’t have any personal numerical objectives, my goal is for the players to have fun and flourish, good results will follow.”
It was his brother who one day told him to accompany him on a track. padel, since then, Gwenaëlle has never left the court. Except when it comes to going to watch the broadcast of Padel Magazine, World Padel Tour… or Premier Padel…or the French Championships. In short, she is a fan of this sport.