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View Full Version : Those dreaded slumps.........


pabletion
10-22-2009, 10:02 PM
Everyone goes through them, from the top players to hackers like us, roaming tennis forums. Its not just a once in a lifetime thing, where you get over it and thats it. Its like a virus, that comes and goes. Well, Ive got the "flu" once again. Symptoms start very mild, a bad day where the forehand is surprisingly not what it normally is, not to worry, just one day. But then, the next day, and the problem is still there. Something feels off with that FH. As a week goes by, I expect the weekend to take care of the problem, but no, symptoms spread. Ive been thinking about my FH so much that other shots go to hell as well. That backhand is suddenly not as trusty anymore, and the serve gets the jitters, cause Im thinking, get a good serve in there cause your FH is shaky...................... sheeeeeeeeeeeees!

What do you do? Personally, Im a fighter, and you have to kill me three times to make sure I stay down so, even though I have absolute crap days, I sometimes manage to find the way to win or at least make it a dog fight, like tonite. I played a very solid junior, who is very fast and fit and has a big FH. Im pretty positive I can beat him easily when playing normally, but the past two weeks have been horrible, and he has been crushing me. Tonight I wont the 1st set, but playing like crap, having to scramble for every ball and being on the defensive end all night long. Lost the 2nd 6-4 after being up a break 4-3, and lost the third 7-5. I was down 5-3 receiving and fought my way back, pure pride................. but very few tennis.

I wanna take some days off but I cant! I love to play, and love to sweat and get tired, Im kindof a masochist that way, I know Im playing bad, but I still wanna be on court working on my game, cause I know my shots are there, just need to find them again, but its so hard to stay positive (almost broke my racquet tonight! :(). How do you stay positive and how do you get over that?

mikeler
10-23-2009, 05:11 AM
Part of the natural tennis cycle. Just keep playing and enjoying the fact that you are healthy and having fun.

jrod
10-23-2009, 05:40 AM
^^^^ Agree.

OP- You need to put things into perspective. Lulls and peaks of your play are normal and occur throughout the year. When you are in a peak, things come easy and the opportunity for growth is limited. When you are in a lull, there is greater opportunity for growth, especially from a mental perspective. When a player learns to effectively manage these difficult situations they will separate themselves from the greater majority of players who do not take the time to learn this skill.

So, my recommendation is you take advantage of these lulls to improve your mental game. Otherwise, it's just another missed opportunity...

mikeler
10-23-2009, 06:05 AM
I've been in a slump most of the year due to injury but it has not stopped me from going out and taking my lumps. The alternative is I get real fat.

pabletion
10-23-2009, 06:51 AM
Mikeler, Jrod, thanks, great advice. Im tryin to do that, work on other things and specially stay positive and just fight, which is something that frustration can take away from you. Im very proud of my match yesterday, although I lost my cool a couple of times, I was able to hang in there and couldve gone either way, even though I really felt my tennis was crap, but I fought and ran like crazy. I think those are the most important aspects of the game if you want to win tournaments (which I still do...), cause you dont play great day in and day out, specialy if youre not putting 4-6 hours a day strictly dedicated to tennis.

Yeah, a coach in my club often tells me "enjoy it, dont get so angry at yourself, its a privilege to play tennis... have fun... etc". He really puts things into perspective, he was a great prospect, played Davis but got a herniated disc, which this crap of tennis Federation (my local) didnt pay to have fixed, and ended his competing days.

fuzz nation
10-23-2009, 12:55 PM
One thing about tennis that can be a huge fight is to not let your head get suckered into getting frustrated. You need to actively learn to recognize that - see it coming when you chalk up a few bad points and some of your game seems to have abandoned you.

Becoming frustrated and "checking out" is a decision. Sort of an emotional unloading where we give up on being responsible for our game for at least a little while. Sure, it's painful when you invest a lot of yourself into developing your fitness and skills, but then it can turn to dust on you. Uugh! Recognize that potential frustration as nothing but a counter-productive distraction and you'll want to ignore it along with any of that "woe is me" drama" once you understand that it can't help your tennis - or earn you an Academy Award.

Now that I've learned to see that angry state of mind for what it really is, the only thing that actually makes me angry is when I get a little angry. My alarm goes off, I'm aware of it, and then it's gone... back to the tennis.

Blake0
10-23-2009, 09:06 PM
This is a cycle in tennis? :shock:

I seem to go through this cycle quite a lot. Sometimes every week to every month. All i do is play through it. It takes time with good practice to get it back, and usually when i do get it back, it comes back better, even if by only a little.