1.) It takes two points to have momentum. If you simply win one point and then lose the next point, you have no momentum. Focus on winning two points in a row. The game of tennis is designed around 2 point swings. Win the first two points of the game, up 30-0, now you need another two points to finish the game. Deuce…win two points, win the game.
2.) If you have just won a point; play high % the following point.
3.) If you have just lost a point; play more aggressive, attack, or run a quick pressure play.
4.) If you have the momentum, it is better to play a little faster. If you do not have the momentum, it is better to slow things down and take your time (within the rules!).
5.) If something is working — keep doing it. If something is not working — mix it up.
6.) Momentum serving : (1) If you have just broken serve, under no circumstances, should you double fault to start your service game. It is best to use a high % spin first serve to ensure you do not. (2) If you have just hit an ace, under no circumstances, should you double fault the next point. It is best to use a high % spin first serve to ensure you do not.
7.) If you are up 40-0, even if you opponent has just made 3 unforced errors, play aggressive, attack, or run a quick pressure play. Your opponent will likely play their best at 0-40. If they don’t — you win the game anyways. However, if they do, it will take a winning shot to close out the game. Also, this creates a relaxed offensive mentality rather than a tight defensive mentality which is usually behind 40-0 leads lost.
8.) Be flexible. These are guidelines. Sometimes though you need to rely on instincts and the flow of the match rather than rigid rules
Monthly Mental Training
Weekly Mental Training
Daily Mental Training
1.) Improve knowledge of 4 Strategies — Build Cross Court, Move Opponent, Attack the Net, Isolate a Corner
2.) Improve level of professionalism with daily, weekly, and monthly mental training
3.) Improve ability to play doubles with a whole day dedicated to doubles each week
4.) Improve conditioning level by doing fitness at every practice and stretching at the end of practices
5.) Improve ability to execute in matches by playing matches everyday
Be charismatic all summer long and improve the atmosphere at practice with your presence. Continue to improve the culture.
1.) Never give up on yourself. Never accept defeat. Keep giving your 100% best effort. If you give up on yourself, even 1%, you will hurt your chances significantly of coming back. Positive self-talk can help you maintain great fight.
2.) Be fit enough to go the distance. A comeback usually requires times and energy. You want your fitness level to be a huge confidence boost for your moral. Knowing you have what it takes physically is critical. If fitness is an issue for you, get fitter. If your already fit enough…get fitter.
3.) Remember this fact: you can never run out of time. You always have enough time to comeback, that is part of what makes tennis great. Keep reminding yourself, the match is not over.
4.) Embrace the situation. You are facing a big deficit. It is certainly not ideal, but everyone takes a tremendous amount of pride in situations that they have come back from in the past. Embrace the opportunity ahead of you.
5.) Strategy wise — the obvious thought is “change up” what you are doing, however, sometimes when you go away from your primary strategies and tactics you only become a worse version of yourself. Sometimes it is better to go even more in on your primary strategy and tactics. Win or go down with your best stuff.
FAC ATTITUDE SYSTEM
1.) Negative talk
2.) Racquet throws or excessive racquet taps
3.) Excessive whining
1.) First offense: warning
2.) Second offense: fitness penalty for individual and/or group
3.) Third offense: ejection
1.) Foul language at a volume where multiple courts can hear
2.) A racquet toss extreme in nature
3.) Extreme disrespect of opponent or Coach
Generally you will find yourself in one of four situations prior to playing a tournament match:
1.) You are playing someone you do not know anything about
2.) You are playing someone you know and are expected to win on paper or have won in the past
3.) You are playing someone you know and are expected to lose on paper or have lost in the past
4.) You are playing someone you know and both players have won before and the match up is fairly even
What should you do?
A.) Start every match playing high %. Play yourself into a rhythm. Lots of cross court ground strokes. Lots of spin first serves. Returns deep down the middle. Play path on approach shots and passing shots.
B.) Do your own analysis. Do not rely on what you hear from other people (outside of your parents and coaches). Do not think about rankings, seedings, or common opponents. Start analyzing your opponent from the moment you see them, begin the match playing high % with your best strategy and tactics, and quickly identify a weakness to exploit. Often times the information you hear from others is unreliable for a number of reasons. Trust your own ability to breakdown your opponent. Regardless of what you do or do not know about your opponent, give them respect prior to the match. Speak positively about their abilities as this will take pressure off you. Avoid thinking things like “I hate playing this person,” or “this person is a cheater,” as these thoughts do not benefit you. If you are playing someone who you have played before…remember…they have likely spent time working on their weaknesses since the last time you played – so continue to analyze them until the same weakness or a new weakness is found.
C.) On the big points — have a very specific plan. Start with where you are going to serve or return, then decide if you are going to play offensive or grind, and then rely on your tactical instincts during the point.
D.) If you are playing someone who you have beaten in the past…remind yourself that deep down your opponent does not believe they can beat you. Expect them to begin the match playing very well since they will have “less pressure,” so do not panic if they start playing very well. Start playing high %. Weather the storm and then when their level drops, seize the momentum of the match.
E.) If you are playing someone who you have lost to in the past…remind yourself that you have put in a lot of hard work since then and that they will have “more pressure” on them. Start the match playing high % and do not give them too much respect by overplaying. Demonstrate through high % play and lots of positive emotion that it is going to be a fight and you expect to win.
Things to ask yourself before a tournament…
1.) Are you prepared?
2.) Can you figure out your opponent?
3.) Do you know yourself?
4.) How well do you handle momentum swings?
5.) Can you finish matches?
PEAKING @ QUALIFIER
Goals for next 2 months:
1.) Improve overall offensive skills
2.) Improve inside out and inside in forehands
3.) Improve backhand down the line
4.) Improve ability to slice on both the forehand and the backhand
5.) Improve confidence in coming forward and volleying short
Goal: Work on playing aggressive during practice.
Why: It will give you something specific to work on during practice that should help take your mind off pre tournament nerves. It will also prepare you in case you need to play fearless yet in control in an aggressive way during the weekend. Most players will separate themselves from their primary strategies and tactics by doing this and therefore will be more concerned with being prepared for the event rather than “how they are playing.”
(1) Start with having an aggressive mentality — in other words: come to practice with the understanding that you will be aggressive; start the warm up with all closed stance
(2) Hit big shots to safe targets — you do not want to miss consistently by trying to hit the ball “to good,” you should always have a safe target
(3) Stick with it even if you do make some mistakes
(4) Be at peace — if you go for some shots and lose some practice matches, no big deal
(5) Sneak in some serve and volley and return and come in
Keep in Mind: Just because you are working on playing aggressive the week before a tournament in practice does not mean you should be super aggressive at all times during the weekend. Work on the skill of being aggressive the week prior and then manage your aggression v high % tactics based on the situation.
QUALITY OF BALL
1.) A ball you will make
2.) A ball that will NOT be attacked
3.) A ball that will eventually win you the point
4.) Quality of Ball > rally ball…because you are not trying to rally in tennis. You are trying to win the point.
5.) Forcing an error > hitting a winner
6.) Quality of ball changes based on the situation..
7.) Play within your capabilities
8.) Do not try to hit winners…that is too much pressure..hit a high quality ball and if it turns out to be a winner then great!
BENEFITS OF PLAYING LOCAL
1.) Improves match count
2.) Could help you with your 1/3 balance
3.) Helps you deal with pressure
4.) You get to play people you know and often times the same people (build rivalries)
5.) You can encourage others to sign up by signing up early
6.) It can help you develop as a player (development > points)
7.) You can use it as a warm up event for other tournaments
8.) Get used to playing in challenging conditions (or even just outside)
9.) Gives you an opportunity to work on your game in certain matches
10.) If you would be practicing anyway…you should just play!