The learning arenaDec 18, 2021
Here are some thoughts that come out of experience both as a player but also as a coach.
One of the obvious goals for every player is to become the most complete player possible, meaning integrating the inner and the outer game.
Being technically sound in every area of the game is very important, also to have a solid strategy and the ability to successfully compete against any type of player. However, the ultimate piece of this complicated puzzle is to learn the ability to compete and everything that comes with it such as mental and emotional resilience.
Players have to learn to compete in different situations; learning to defend and hold their ground against stronger opponents, growing confident in their offensive game through weaker opponents and learning correct judgment and appropriate decision making in the uncertainty of competition against players of similar skill levels.
I order to achieve that, it’s key to find the adequate tournament mix, allowing kids to play equals so they can experience both sides of the coin, win and lose.
One of the great assets of competitive greatness is to be able to deal with pressure and tension. The biggest tension a player can experience is when he/she has to bring their A game in order to perform and win against players they believe to be stronger. Here is where you have the most pressure. To play “better” players knowing that your chances of winning are not big, creates very little performance pressure, you can relax, play well and take the defeat….nothing happens.
This is one of the core missions of a tennis coach that tries to achieve greatness for himself and his students: to create a courageous competitive mindset.
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