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View Full Version : Is Racket/Ball Abuse Mostly A Guy Thing?


Cindysphinx
06-16-2009, 07:14 AM
TT seems to be a male-dominated forum (not that there's anything wrong with that!). All the talk of racket-throwing around here got me thinking.

In all of the social and USTA matches I have played, not once has any player thrown a racket. I have seen a dropped racket very infrequently (it usually appears to be inadvertent). I can't even recall someone hitting the net or fence hard with their racket.

I can recall one instance of ball abuse, where my partner lost her serve and whacked a ball hard over the net. Our opponents were offended, and I was mortified. It just seemed unspeakably rude.

How common is this sort of thing really?

Cindy -- who uses a discontinued racket and would never risk breaking it

OrangeOne
06-16-2009, 07:31 AM
Is Racket/Ball Abuse Mostly A Guy Thing?


At the adult (18+) level in comp / league / tournament play: Absolutely and without question.

At the junior level: In Australia, the younger 'serious' tournament playing girls are often worse-behaved than the younger guys, certainly their matches give the referees more work to do!

todd03blown
06-16-2009, 07:33 AM
I have throw my racquet a couple of times during an ALTA match but it was due to my crappy play and nothing to do with my opponents. I actually threw it out of the courts and over the pine trees that line our courts in my subdivision. Plus I have see it a lot besides my doing as well in ALTA and USTA.

jrod
06-16-2009, 07:40 AM
Is Racket/Ball Abuse Mostly A Guy Thing?

My observations support this, if you ignore the junior-level players.

SonRK
06-16-2009, 10:14 AM
I was at the NJ States Championships in Kearny,NJ watching a few matches for 3 hours, and I saw 3 racquets being thrown or flung, and one was actually bent :O

Grover Sparkman
06-16-2009, 10:22 AM
Yes. At a tournament a few months ago a guy launched his K90 over the fence and it landed about 3 feet from me, almost nailing me in the head. No apology or nothing so I chucked it back over the fence.

I've launched balls in disgust before, but I don't throw my racquet out of not wanting to spend $180 on a new one. Though I have wanted to smash it, I've restrained myself by realizing it won't make me play any better. Instead I will just knock the crap out of a first serve and that usually goes into the net or goes long.

damazing
06-16-2009, 10:38 AM
My brother can usually be counted on to smash his racket on the ground/bench/trashcan whatever is available. Surprisingly, he actually plays better for the two games after he gets all worked up. His shots have more zing and he focuses better and gets in more first serves.

I've even seen him try to force the anger to help his play, but when he tries to force it he doesn't have the focus.

I usually just smile to myself, since I know that I've won the match when ever he gets that riled up.

PushyPushster
06-16-2009, 11:38 AM
Yes, it's a guy thing and yes it's pretty common. The 'I Just Missed a Volley And Will Now Slam My Racket Into The Top of The Net' play seems particularly common at the 3.5 level. Since it's usually self directed anger nobody takes it too seriously.

I'd do it myself, but I'm too much of a cheap@ss to risk damaging my awesome Prince Triple Threat Bandit. That's almost forty bucks, yo.

precision2b
06-16-2009, 11:47 AM
Yes. At a tournament a few months ago a guy launched his K90 over the fence and it landed about 3 feet from me, almost nailing me in the head. No apology or nothing so I chucked it back over the fence.

I've launched balls in disgust before, but I don't throw my racquet out of not wanting to spend $180 on a new one. Though I have wanted to smash it, I've restrained myself by realizing it won't make me play any better. Instead I will just knock the crap out of a first serve and that usually goes into the net or goes long.


I feel the same way. I have launched a few balls and wanted to throw my racquet but I remembered how much I had to pay for it. That calmed me down... I laughed about what you said you did on your first serve because that’s exactly what I do…LOL :oops:

Cindysphinx
06-16-2009, 12:08 PM
Yes, it's a guy thing and yes it's pretty common. The 'I Just Missed a Volley And Will Now Slam My Racket Into The Top of The Net' play seems particularly common at the 3.5 level. Since it's usually self directed anger nobody takes it too seriously.

I'd do it myself, but I'm too much of a cheap@ss to risk damaging my awesome Prince Triple Threat Bandit. That's almost forty bucks, yo.

So, what is your most favorite way to take out your frustrations after a bad shot, then?

My Signature Move probably looks pretty idiotic. It's to kind of stand there for 3-5 seconds, feet greater than shoulder width apart, bent over at the waist, racket handle in one or both hands, racket head down on ground between my feet. Head hanging in disgust, eyes down, shoulders slumped. In this position, I can mumble obscenities without being ejected from the club.

I spend a lot of time in this position. That is why I can describe it so well!

cghipp
06-16-2009, 12:14 PM
Yes. It's pathetic. There's no faster way for me to lose all respect for a player.

precision2b
06-16-2009, 12:20 PM
So, what is your most favorite way to take out your frustrations after a bad shot, then?

My Signature Move probably looks pretty idiotic. It's to kind of stand there for 3-5 seconds, feet greater than shoulder width apart, bent over at the waist, racket handle in one or both hands, racket head down on ground between my feet. Head hanging in disgust, eyes down, shoulders slumped. In this position, I can mumble obscenities without being ejected from the club.

I spend a lot of time in this position. That is why I can describe it so well!

GOOD ONE!!! I will try it next time I play......

goober
06-16-2009, 01:47 PM
My observations support this, if you ignore the junior-level players.

I have seen racquet abuse in female pro players especially lower level ones like in Futures events.

AR15
06-16-2009, 03:04 PM
I've never seen a female break a racquet or launch a ball over the fence, but I've seen it done several times my males.

Me, I just swing mine down at the court and stop it right before impact. (My brain takes over my reflexes and saves my racquet)

heroix
06-16-2009, 03:20 PM
Perhaps not in adult... but in junior play- girls seem to be more verbal than physical.

I've watched my brother play a lot of ALTA mixed doubles, and usually it seem to be the same. Women get a little wordy sometimes, while men may be wordy... but at their extreme ****ed off stages they may get physical.

thehustler
06-16-2009, 03:24 PM
It's a guy thing. I don't like doing it, but I have. I use it mainly to wrestle control back from my opponent. Nothing can distract an opponent like a well timed rant/racket toss/ball smash. They're now thinking about me instead of their game. 99% of the time this works and gets me back into the match and on my way to victory. Only the really tough ones know how to avoid this trap.

coyfish
06-16-2009, 03:45 PM
I find guys take out their hostility by smashing things while many women do it by smashing others :). Women can be particularly nasty when they lose. Guys may throw a racket but they at least show some respect to the other player after the game. Thats a generalization keep that in mind. Ive played some girls at my college who think they are the bombI have beaten them and they were very sour after the match for no reason. One girl comes to shake my hand and says, "well i played like Sh1t and walked a way without looking at me. . .

KerryJ
06-16-2009, 03:53 PM
Around here racquet throwing isn't common (at least where I am) but it's usually a guy throwing it. It seems that girls are a lot more 'catty' in there matches. I've heard girls say some bad things pretty loudly during and after matches that I would never say

lordmanji
06-16-2009, 04:13 PM
i'll mutter and curse at myself though not in a outright yell, and i'll sometimes if im really peeved hit the net or my thigh but ive never slammed my racket cuz its too expensive lol. i wont hit the ball at the opponent either cuz i think that can be called assault. i guess im not the worst case. i do have a teammate that yells and curses and gives you attitude and whacks the ball at you though and it's pretty stressful playing with him.

Swissv2
06-16-2009, 04:42 PM
Watching a lot of Division I female tennis, I can honestly say it is more a guy thing - but it does happen with a few girls. More often than not, the frustrated female will scream like crazy, then get back to business. The guys just want to beat something up, whether it be the racquet, the net, chairs, bottles, etc. Probably stems from a history of "cave-man-beat-stick-over-mammoth-head" thing.

Then again, when you watch pro tennis on TV, how many female players have broken their racquet? A few, but not as much as on the guy side. Perhaps a correlation? ...perhaps.

stoble
06-16-2009, 05:16 PM
I saw one guy play who would go through 2 or 3 racquets a night. His racquets were all disposable to him. All his racquets were either kiddie racquets or 20 year old garage sale racquets he would stock up on to play and smash. Just disgraceful.

coyfish
06-16-2009, 05:41 PM
Watching a lot of Division I female tennis, I can honestly say it is more a guy thing - but it does happen with a few girls. More often than not, the frustrated female will scream like crazy, then get back to business. The guys just want to beat something up, whether it be the racquet, the net, chairs, bottles, etc. Probably stems from a history of "cave-man-beat-stick-over-mammoth-head" thing.

Then again, when you watch pro tennis on TV, how many female players have broken their racquet? A few, but not as much as on the guy side. Perhaps a correlation? ...perhaps.

Yeah but on the same token you can't even begin to compare the hostility among the female players to the men. The guys may throw rackets but they get over it and show respect to opponents. The girls are just nasty to one another. I wouldn't want to see that locker room. Of course there are exceptions but I think we can all agree on that.

Swissv2
06-16-2009, 06:02 PM
Yeah but on the same token you can't even begin to compare the hostility among the female players to the men. The guys may throw rackets but they get over it and show respect to opponents. The girls are just nasty to one another. I wouldn't want to see that locker room. Of course there are exceptions but I think we can all agree on that.

You are correct for the most part. Fortunately, I have seen our girls treating other teams with a bit of respect. They even share food with the other team, chit-chat a bit, and I have not seen them fight.

On the guys side, most of the anger is directed towards themselves for not doing something right. Unless a player has an issue with a line call, its pretty civil.

cghipp
06-16-2009, 06:07 PM
Acting like an *** on the court is not showing respect to your opponent, no matter who you think your tantrum is directed at.

OrangeOne
06-16-2009, 10:27 PM
My Signature Move probably looks pretty idiotic. It's to kind of stand there for 3-5 seconds, feet greater than shoulder width apart, bent over at the waist, racket handle in one or both hands, racket head down on ground between my feet. Head hanging in disgust, eyes down, shoulders slumped. In this position, I can mumble obscenities without being ejected from the club.

I spend a lot of time in this position. That is why I can describe it so well!

You know, and I know this is going to sound weird / odd... but it's that sort of 'negative body language' that we routinely try and drill out of our kids at squad training.

It gives away too much to the opponent (how happy does it make you feel to see an opponent show such emotion - clearly lets you know you're on top), and it rarely helps people just focus on the next ball.

That said CS, I know you're an adult and I'm sure you're more than aware of all of this.

adams_1
06-17-2009, 12:38 AM
I throw my racquet. Not in a 'I'm going to smash this racquet' way. Just a kind of gentle 'get out of my sight' half-drop :P

jimstorm
06-17-2009, 03:21 AM
I was at a tourney a few weeks ago and the #1 girls for 16 and 18 champs were sisters. They were both throwing their rackets and screaming the whole time. anybody can do it. haha it was really funny to watch.

PushyPushster
06-17-2009, 03:29 AM
So, what is your most favorite way to take out your frustrations after a bad shot, then?

My Signature Move probably looks pretty idiotic. It's to kind of stand there for 3-5 seconds, feet greater than shoulder width apart, bent over at the waist, racket handle in one or both hands, racket head down on ground between my feet. Head hanging in disgust, eyes down, shoulders slumped.


I do something similar, but in the opposite direction. Head falls back, eyes closed, directed at the sky. Teeth are clenched to contain any vulgarities. Maintain pose for 3 seconds and then a deep breath. After that cathartic moment I return to the game, still dialed in at Maximum Suck.

You know, and I know this is going to sound weird / odd... but it's that sort of 'negative body language' that we routinely try and drill out of our kids at squad training.

I tried doing a Fist Pump/Victory Dance after every shot I dumped into the net, but people started thinking I was a bit weird.

120mphBodyServe
06-17-2009, 04:18 AM
I can see you are all very very far away from being Zen masters.
Shame on you all....
If I play a bad point I think for a few seconds about what I did wrong and then rectify the error/cause of the error on the next point.

Cindysphinx
06-17-2009, 04:58 AM
I do something similar, but in the opposite direction. Head falls back, eyes closed, directed at the sky. Teeth are clenched to contain any vulgarities. Maintain pose for 3 seconds and then a deep breath. After that cathartic moment I return to the game, still dialed in at Maximum Suck.


I may need to try that. It has certain advantages. For one thing, my position has the disadvantage of literally mooning any people who have had the misfortune to be spectators. Yours, in contrast, has the dignity of a religious ritual and perhaps commands the respect of any witnesses.

Seriously, I don't notice my opponent's body language *at all.* I am totally focused on my Overall Suckworthiness that I don't care at all whether they stay calm and cool or whether they flip out.

sboo
06-17-2009, 05:29 AM
I think holding a purposeful posture and keeping a cool head on the tennis court is very important, especially at younger ages. In my experiences, I have found that showing little positive/negative emotion has helped take my opponent out of the mental part of my game.

That being said, when I do get really upset at my shot you can count on a ball being blasted at the back screen or a very audible f-bomb :p