We find Paul Daulan, the protagonist of the series In the heart du padel after six months spent Padel Stuff Bilbao, under the leadership of former professional player Andoni Bardasco.

Ten years in six months...

“The areas where I have improved the most as a player are defense, and understanding the game in general: movement, speed management, rhythm, masking shots...

In Pau I didn't take lessons, I was left to my own devices: I played my games, I improved a little but I still kept my faults. When you meet someone like Andoni, who really knows this sport and all its facets, it's a huge boost for progression. We're talking about someone who was among the best in the world, who was coached by international-class coaches, like Gaby Reca, Horacio Clementi...

At the rate I was going before leaving for Bilbao, it would have taken me ten years to progress as I have done in the last six months! When I arrived, he made me understand that I didn't know how to move or defend, that I was always far from the ball... I immediately realized that there was work to be done!”

Paul Daulan and Andoni Bardasco discussion padel

Validated objective: progress as a coach

“In France I took the TFP, it's very good for learning how to create a session, for knowing the main principles of this sport. This is more than enough to target an audience at an introductory level, but further in-depth training is required to be able to coach competitive players. And that's exactly what I've been doing for the past six months.

As a teacher, I enjoy it because I have completely different audiences. I have players of all levels, young people who dream of being professionals, but also new ones who have never played racket sports! This allows me to improve in all areas and broaden my range of skills.”

A new role within Padel Stuff

“I am taking part more and more in all the courses that Andoni organizes and I am giving more and more lessons on a daily basis. This comes from a request from me and the idea is to become a full-time coach Padel Stuff From September onwards.

We get along very well with Andoni, we have developed an excellent organization which allows me to flourish while meeting a need.

Discussion Bardasco Daulan Inaki Padel Stuff bilbao

As I said previously, we have both beginners and players who compete, even at a high level, with the Basque number 1 under sixteen, tennis players who have played on the ATP, players who participate in the FIP Tour... Andoni takes care of the players in the morning, he sees all their areas of progress, and in the afternoon I make them work on these previously identified areas.

There are a lot of people coming, people from everywhere, and finally there is room for an additional teacher. So the idea is that I stay at least one more year.

And then as you already know, there will be a second season of At the Heart of padel, with another player, and it’s interesting that I can also help this person a little, transmit to him in my own way everything that Andoni taught me.”

Gain credibility

“The objective when I decided to come to Bilbao was to improve as a player to be more credible as a coach. Gain level to be able to transmit more things and also be able to help more experienced players.

Currently, I train on average three times a week: we have a group with Andoni, but I'm not doing tournaments at the moment because I don't really have the time. I have only played one tournament in Bilbao since my arrival. If I could I would like to be able to do more, even return to France to play more, but without any real sporting ambition. The idea would be to do it more for fun, to put into practice what I'm working on, to see my progress in a competitive context. At the moment I don't have enough time to do it, but in the future I definitely intend to participate in tournaments again.”


Areas to work on following At the Heart of the padel

“I always have to improve in everything related to playing overhead shots: bandeja, vibora, smash... In Andoni's approach, you have to be good at baseline to be good at padel. And since he works in the long term with me, he first wanted to lay the foundations in some way to allow me to progress sustainably. To make a long story short, I've spent relatively little time at the net over the last six months! (laughs)

But now that I've been able to learn some basic skills, we'll be able to have fun and practice everything related to high balls!”

Paul Daulan In the heart of padel bandeja padel stuff

The differences with France

“Here, the players are generally pretty good in defense. Generally speaking, regardless of the level, people first seek to be precise, to not make mistakes before wanting to make decisive shots. In France, we often see more aggressive players, who look for winning points. It's a difference in state of mind which comes from the fact that in France the players of padel often come from tennis, while in Spain there is a culture of padel For years. It ultimately makes perfect sense and the difference in philosophy should narrow over time.”

A new celebrity?

“It’s true that when people come to the academy, they often tell me that they saw me on Padel Magazine. It's obviously nice to see that people are following the series, but we're not yet at the point where we can talk about fame! (laughs)”

We will do the accounts again at the end of the season!

Xan is a fan of padel. But also rugby! And his posts are just as punchy. Physical trainer of several padel, he unearths atypical posts or deals with topical subjects. It also gives you some tips to develop your physique for the padel. Clearly, he imposes his offensive style as on the field of padel !