In this episode, I discuss 10 things you can start doing on the court to maintain focus during your matches.
You’ll learn several methods to maintain focus and resources to expand your mental toughness on the tennis court.
A few of the questions answered include:
- What should I do before big points during the match?
- What should I be doing before serves and returns?
- How do communicate better with my partner?
- What should I be focusing on during points?
If you ever get nervous on the court or have trouble maintaining your focus during matches, this episode is for you. Maintaining focus is one of the key differentiators between lower and higher level players.
Learn the best advice I’ve learned on this topic from top pro players and coaches over the years.
Notes from this Podcast
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Here are some of the things I mention in this podcast episode:
- #1 – Focus on your opponent/strategy
- Spend more time studying your opponent’s tendencies and how you can expose them rather than your own weaknesses.
- #2 – Breathe
- Take a second to breathe between points, especially if you are nervous or frustrated.
- #3 – Focus on the seams
- Correction: Focusing on the seams of the ball was actually from the book, Inner Game of Tennis.
- In the episode I said it was from Getting Tight, an online course by Jeff Greenwald from Fearless Tennis and Craig O’Shannessy. Getting Tight is a great course for players who want to improve their game under pressure and play more freely.
- #4 – Footwork/positioning > hitting
- In my Mental Toughness Checklist, I discuss the importance of exaggerating your footwork, especially in pressure moments, to make sure your positioning is correct.
- #5 – Don’t be negative
- It’s okay to be frustrated for a second, but don’t let negativity consume you.
- In my How to Win More Tiebreakers podcast, I talk about how negativity narrows your focus on the wrong things.
- #6 – Communication
- Tell your partner exactly what you’re going to do on the next point to put the focus on strategy/execution rather than outcomes.
- #7 – Slow down
- During big moments, when you’re serving, frustrated, or between every point, just slow down and reset.
- #8 – Bounce before returns
- Bouncing for a little bit and encouraging yourself before returns helps you to engage mentally.
- #9 – Visualization
- Steve Nash, an all-time great basketball player, would close his eyes before free throws and visualize them going in. Before every serve, visualize where you want it to go.
- #10 – Gratitude
- Appreciate the moment, enjoy the opportunity, and be grateful that you can play the sport, compete, and have fun. Remember, you’re not getting paid, so just enjoy it.