Am feeling like Federer - shattered!!!

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by Torres, Sep 26, 2012.

  1. Torres

    Torres Banned

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    Have spent the whole of the summer season playing various club team matches for the mens team, mixed team, singles leagues, and travelling around the place for regional singles tournaments.

    Only rarely have I felt that I've had a 'nice' or genuinely enjoyable game of tennis. Most of the time, its an incredible grind, dealing with ultra competitive opponents, points on the line, and all the gamemanship that that entails.

    Throw in dispiriting losses - a losing run of 4 consecutive singles matches all on tie breaks - ('I really need to give up competitive play'), mixed with grinding wins, and the occasional genuinely uplifting win ('Wow, I'm an amazing tennis player'), and it all plays yo-yo with your emotions. And unless you're playing someone who's alot worse than you which is really quite rare, you never end up playing the relaxed, free flowing tennis that you might do within a more familiar, home club environment.

    Regional tournaments toughen you up like nothing else, but now with the winter closing in, I just feel completely shattered, mentally and physically. My whole body feels, variously stiff, or like chopped meat, with all sorts of niggly aches and strains which are difficult to shake. Pounding those hard courts and stretching every nerve and sinew really does take it out of you, and only very rarely do you occasionally play on a more body friendly surface (played on grass for the first time in 20 years in the season just gone -lovely surace but for the divots).

    Throw in a demanding job and its hard to keep up genuine competitive play without it feeling the wear. Kudos and immense respect to all those who have battled through the ranks and the TonLars of this world, but trying to play the same all action style of tennis in my late 30s as I did in my early 20s is hard, hard, hard on the mind and the body.

    Can't say I'm really looking forward to the winter season. I think I'd rather have a yoga retreat with hot stone massages, nice weather and being one with nature again!
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2012
    #1
  2. spaceman_spiff

    spaceman_spiff Hall of Fame

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    My guess is that you're playing with the wrong mindset.

    For example, when I first moved to England and started playing Sunday league football, I was on a pretty good team that won most of the time. We won two cups and nearly won the league, but it was rarely ever fun. Even when they were winning, they couldn't enjoy it. And on the occasions they lost, it was even worse. Unfortunately, most of the other teams were the same, so switching teams wasn't really going to improve things. Eventually, I just stopped playing and focused on stuff I enjoyed more (tennis, skiing, etc.).

    The point is that it's your mindset and your attitude towards the game that is wearing you down. If you play to have fun and try to win while you're at it, you'll have a good time. If you play to win with enjoyment being a secondary concern, then you'll end up shattered.
     
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  3. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

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    I just took a week off from tennis for a vacation. My body definitely needed it for my Achilles and tennis elbow. My brain also needed it because I was falling into a slump.
     
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  4. tennis tom

    tennis tom Hall of Fame

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    For less gamesmanship play Senior Age Group.

    You're not getting paid for this I assume, and your mortgage doesn't depend on winning, so enjoy participating rather than the winning. Read Kipling's poem "IF" about the difference winning and losing.

    If your looking to return to nature and you're in Kali, try Harbin Hot Springs. It's a hippie nudist camp, the Watsu there is great, ask for Diana. There's a court at a school nearby if you have withdrawal's. They probably have hot rocks but just in case bring your own.

    Where were the grass courts, did you play barefoot?
     
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  5. IA-SteveB

    IA-SteveB Professional

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    I'd say take a break for a good while and back off a bit on your competitive play. When I was young, I played softball 4 nights a week in a high league and we traveled to tournaments on a lot of weekends. Not that softball is as mentally demanding as tennis, but the physicality does take its toll. This wasn't a league where you have a glove on one hand and a beer in the other. Haha

    I just think you'd enjoy it more if you backed off and played a lighter schedule. With all of the other demands on you, you may feel you enjoy playing MORE by doing less. I know it will be hard. I am one of those guys who will play any sport any time so it is still hard to dial it back now that I am 40.
     
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  6. goober

    goober Legend

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    If you are not enjoying stop doing it. Even if you are high level recreational player you are still a recreational player. Recreation is suppose to be just that- recreation and fun. If you are dreading the upcoming competitive season, it is time to step away. Ask yourself what are you really trying to accomplish and at what cost? Are you chasing ranking points or amateur level glory? Will your life actually change for the better if you get them? For most people the answer is listen to their body and listen to the voice in their head asking themselves- "Why am I putting myself through all this?"
     
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  7. floridatennisdude

    floridatennisdude Hall of Fame

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    Ha, I remember mentioning that to you in some thread. Glad you did it...feeling recharged and energized?
     
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  8. arche3

    arche3 Banned

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    Easy. Get better. Play less. Win more. Your not making money doing this so who cares?
     
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  9. goran_ace

    goran_ace Hall of Fame

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    OP sounds like I did when I decided it was time to take an indefinite hiatus from the game. After competing for over a decade straight through I was burned out in my early 20's. There was nothing left to play for, nothing left to prove. For the first time since I first picked up a racket I had no motivation. When I came back I was a changed man. I have a whole new appreciation for the game. It doesn't feel like a burden anymore. I can truly play just for fun.

    Then do it. Take the winter off from competing and just hit/work out. Take that yoga retreat. Spend some time with nature. Recharge the batteries.
     
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  10. Avles

    Avles Hall of Fame

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    You could try switching sports for a while. Might be a way to stay active and athletic without the kinds of pressures tennis holds for you. Winter is coming.. maybe badminton? Or fencing?
     
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  11. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

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    Feeling fat and lethargic.
     
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  12. dizzlmcwizzl

    dizzlmcwizzl Hall of Fame

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    I have sympathy for you ... even though the conditions are different I have been feeling the same way for a while.

    Because I have been one of the better players on playoff teams in multiple districts I have been playing 40-50 matches per season between mixed and adult. It is a real grind because I know the teams are counting on me to win ... so I end up playing to my win, rather than playing to improve.

    By the end of the season, win or lose, I feel like I have spent the entire time trying to maintain rather than get better. After Adult sectionals the last three years I have wanted to put away the rackets for months ... except the next mixed season is right around the corner.

    I am incapable of saying no to my friends so I find my self desperately hoping to get bumped just so I will be at the bottom of the next band and not have to worry about carrying so much of the load. I want all of that pressure to win off my shoulders.

    Anywho ... good luck. I have no advice, only sympathy.
     
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  13. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    Ooh, Dizz. That its so not good.

    Last year, every one of my captains wanted me to play every match. You have to say no out of self preservation.

    What I did was to write every match for every team on a calendar, along with the name of the opponent. Then figure out which matches will be the toughest and say you are available only for those matches. Period.

    That way I got the right number of fun, competitive matches without burnout.
     
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  14. Fuji

    Fuji Legend

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    I know that feel. In the past month I've been dealing with elbow, back, shoulder, and leg issues that just won't go away due to trying to get better. Sure I got better, but at what cost? Over 30 hours a week on court for 10 weeks does a number on the body, especially when it's all hard courts. A couple shanks and a bad ankle roll and I feel like death for a few days.

    Needless to say, I'm on my way out of the game for a bit. Just too many injuries without enough return to justify the toughness. Definitely needing that break!

    -Fuji
     
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  15. dizzlmcwizzl

    dizzlmcwizzl Hall of Fame

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    Well ... in the grand scheme of things it is nice to be loved. But when your regular doubles partner is perhaps my best tennis friend and the co-captain of the teams I have a hard time saying no ... I admit I just need to get better at saying no.
     
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  16. Tmano

    Tmano Professional

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    I'm sorry you feel like that Torres. You know I'm 38 and as you said tennis is a demanding sport if you want to be competitive player and it certantly wears you down. You got your job plus when done if you don't practice you train. Repat this for one year and if you are not a super man you are coocked! Some time I feel like you too but I don't let that feeling overcome me because I know I have a few more years of tennis left at a good level.
    I guess you had a little taste of what pros feel during their season.:)...however that's their job:twisted:.
    However to be honest to me it seerms you simply played way too much this summer. Take some rest and my suggestion is to play what you like best ( singles or doubles or mixdoubles not all of them) and for your only competitive plasure or just for fun.
    hope helps
     
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