View Full Version : Nerves
05-22-2007, 12:11 PM
I don't know if I'm normal or just bit too hard on myself but everytime i play a match in a league, I get nervous and my hand is timid and i tend to freeze. When i play for fun or just rally back and forth and enjoy the sun etc.. i feel like i'm soo good my pride level goes up and i think i'm someone important... then match comes up , poor performance and feel total humility and worthless.. i rather just be good (not great, nor bad) and be consistent throughout matches, drills, and tournaments etc... but this rollercoaster effect makes me go crazy and I get really confused who I am as a tennis player.
So any tips that works for you guys before or during a match that has done wonders or something you strongly believe in... as i finally realize why everyone says tennis is such a mental game...
05-22-2007, 12:57 PM
The answer is to play more matches and more practice. With more practice you gain more confidence in your form and making it more natural. You have to play more matches to be able to get used to the air in a match.
I had the same problem a few months back. What I did was when I would just rally with people I would act like it's a match and try to stay as consistent as I can. Don't try to hit winners (unless your hitting partner tries to hit winners) and don't try to constantly force errors, this will just make your hitting partner mad, just stay consistent with good spin and good form and try to run down whatever you can. Practicing like this helps you get used to a match situation and it also helps get a consistant form.
play a lot of matches... to get match tough.. you just have to get used to playing matches and it will go away.
05-22-2007, 01:10 PM
I have a problem finding a middle ground. To avoid getting "timid", which has happened on occasion, when I start winning points with winners, I'll often find myself hitting even harder on the next point..and inevitably making an error. Than, on the next point, in an effort to compensate, I get hesitant and under hit.
05-22-2007, 01:19 PM
So do you guys think playing conservative is probally the worse thing to do? I heard that one of the thing to overcome some nerves is to always have full raqcquet head speed (at least forehand side)... maybe this is for the pros.. and not average joes like me... but yeah do feel bit of release when i do hit full racquet head speed and get in the zone... but when it goes out.. i get so darn frustrated i rethink if i should be doing it... i guess i just have to build my mental toughness, confidence and practicve.. man tennis is a second job :)
05-22-2007, 04:15 PM
Thats what I ment when I said good form and spin, to get good spin you have to swing with good racket head speed and to swing this fast you have to have good form. You will get alot of shots out, but after a while you will start to get more shots in, so keep going for it.
05-22-2007, 04:54 PM
there are a few things you can do to calm nerves. the biggest is to control your breathing. heres some tips.
1. Try to take deep breaths through your nose, hold, and slowly exhale through your mouth.
2. Breath like you have asthma. short and quick
3. sing a song
4. say "bounce" everytime the ball bounces and "hit" whenever you or your opponent hits it. this will greatly help your timing.
5. keep saying key words to yourself i.e. "focus...concentrate...watch the ball"
6. try to read the letters on the ball. this will get your hand-eye coordination going.
dont do all these at once, but try a few a match. nerves are very common even at the pro level. you'll get used to them when you start playing alot more.
05-22-2007, 05:03 PM
the main thing is to lower your expectations. it's impossible that you will play your best ALL THE TIME. if you can bring to a match 70% of your practice level, it's already very good. dont put so much pressure on yourself, and you'll find that your true abilities will manifest themselves much more often. federer early in his career had that problem, and so does safin.
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