View Full Version : how to be loose during matches

10-23-2009, 08:43 PM
Hi i play junior tennis is socal and im sure this has come up before but for some reason I tend to get tight during matches and i can't hit my shots. Its not that i dont have enough experience because i have been playing lots of turneys. I am about a 5.0 player. I have very fluid strokes and sound basics and technique but are there any rituals that anyone knows that really work that will help me stay loose during a match? All help appreciated :)

10-23-2009, 09:05 PM
This is all I have been thinking about lately. I can't get loose like I want to and know I can.

10-23-2009, 10:43 PM
A stiff shot of.... Just kidding!

Anyways, I used to have that problem often too, especially when I was younger. The key is breathing and visualizing yourself as relaxed. The simple truth is that we can't just push a button and instantly relax ourselves as we wish, the body doesn't respond that way. So having said that, we, as players need to be able to stay in control mentally.

Breathe deep whenever you can. Controlled breaths through the nose and out the mouth *should* lower heart rate and promote o2 going through your muscles helping to relax them. Stay limber, I find that warm-ups with a jump rope before a match can often take off that nervous edge. jumping rope allows you to just forget everything else for the moment and just get lost in the rhythm.

Between points it doesn't hurt to think about the crucial reminders, bend your knees, prepare early, hit out in front etc... While practicing, it's good to isolate specific things and focus on those only... if you're hitting into the tape, before every stroke vocalize "knees"

Other than that, in a match-setting be prepared to have a mental "delete" button. Forget about wasted points, they're gone and you can't get them back. Focus on the next point and how you can capitalize on the weapons that you have.

Just some thoughts, hope it helps

10-25-2009, 08:29 PM
today i was very successful at being loose and accelerating at contact. HUGE difference in my strokes. I got deep, heavy, fast balls with that nice pop sound on all of my strokes.

as the competition went on i noticed i started to get a bit tighter and had to constantly remind myself to stay loose. my friend who is a 5.0 commented on the difference in my game.

staying loose is by far the single most important thing i can do to improve my game.

one thing that was very helpful was the video posted on here with federer warming up on the same court next to another guy and just watching how loose and relaxed and confident federer was especially compared to the other guy.

huge huge factor.

10-25-2009, 08:46 PM

here it is agian for those of you who missed it.

such an important concept and really a state of mind.