19.10.2019 19:47

Psychology of junior tennis player: tennis confidence and psychological advantage

Psychology of junior tennis player: tennis confidence and psychological advantage

Three important keys to success in tennis include: physical conditioning, mental toughness, and tennis skill. An abundance of these three components is absolutely necessary to be successful at the highest level in tennis. Working with Junior Tennis Player it is necessary to keep in mind all these components of tennis performance. Physical talent and hard work go a long way towards success in tennis.

Without mental toughness it is impossible to handle match adversity to match the power of your ground strokes and play consistent high level tennis. Mental toughness like physical conditioning and tennis skill can be improved with practice and training.

The most critical tennis player task during the match is to control thoughts and mind between points and during a change over. It is important for the success because of two reasons:

1) It is necessary to process each previous point to have the utmost confidence, composure, and focus.

2) Tennis player has to clear his/her mind so you can mentally prepare for the next point.

No tennis player is perfect with their strokes, but it is necessary to minimize mental game errors: loosing focus and emotion control because of frustration. Unlike physical errors during a match, mental game errors can linger for an entire set or even a match. Consistent mental toughness and preparation between points leads to consistent performance, the hallmark of championship players.

1) Frustration. I‘ve seen many players that appear calm on the outside, but are churning on the inside because they missed an easy shot. Frustration is the biggest enemy between points. When tennis player is frustrated, mistakes become frequent.

Sticking in the past it is impossible to play the next point with focus. It‘s like having a monkey on your back while playing the next point because you don‘t give 100 percent focus to the current point. Negative emotions can cause strategy changing, playing too aggressively, or giving up during a point.

2) Doubts. It is impossible to play the best tennis having self‐doubt. Besides
being frustrated after missed shots, many players begin to doubt their ability: –Can I win this set?‖ Or ―Why is my backhand off today?‖ Players who lose confidence after a couple of missed shots will play tentatively and fear making more mistakes. Players who doubt their ability may not take risks, such as change up their strategy when needed or go for an outright winner. A big role of the mental game of tennis is to help a tennis player being confident between points in spite of missed shots.

3) High expectations. Many tennis players have some perfectionism. They try to play perfect tennis, have very high expectations for their performance and worry about letting others down. Because of their high expectations, they are very hard on themselves after missed shots, unforced errors, or generally not performing up to their expectations. It is important to explain that nobody can be perfect and human beings are prone to making errors.

4) Energy level control. Tennis player energy level and focus go hand in hand. When a player energy is too low or too high, his focus suffers and this affects his performance. Tennis players should know their optimal energy level and have strategies to produce it on demand. For example, Rafael Nadal performs his best with high energy. He is always moving his feet in the warm‐up, between points and on the changeovers. When Nadal‘s energy level drops, he tries to pick it up by moving his feet. Roger Federer doesn‘t need that same level of energy to play well. Federer is much more calm and subdued.

5) Positive image. Mental images are more powerful than words. What a player thinks about is what he gets in tennis. If he think about hitting a poor serve on the next point, he is programming his body to do that. It is important to see or feel a good serve or return before every service and have control over images and thoughts between point and during a change over.

6) Over analysis. After mistakes or unforced errors, many players think too much about how to –fix‖ their strokes. This common mental error is called –paralysis by over‐analysis.‖ Over‐thinking the strokes should be avoided in the middle of a match. Analyzing or thinking too much about how to make a good stroke can cause a new mistake. It should be done later on the practice lessons.

Summing up, each new point in a match should be played with a clear mind and a steady sense of self-confidence.Top players use routines before each point, which includes having a mental routine to prepare for each serve. It helps them let go of the last point, adjust your energy level, reinforce in a confident state of mind, and prepare for the next point. Tennis player‘s between‐point routine is critical to peak performance.

V.S. Yakubovskiy, G.S. Yakubovskiy, T.S. Ivanova

Psychology of junior tennis player: tennis confidence and psychological advantage

Опубликовано 19.10.2019 19:47 | Просмотров: 104 | Блог » RSS


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