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AR15 02-05-2013 08:14 AM

Spectating adult league tennis
 
I was watching my team play last night and I had an ironic observation that I'd like to see if anyone else shares.

When I watch the players in my league, as a spectator, they don't seem to look like they play as well as they do when I'm actually playing against them. From the spectator point of view, it looks like their shots do not have as much pace as they seem to have when I'm playing against them.

The irony (to me) is that when I have watched (live in person) professionals play, their pace (and skills) seems much higher than I was expecting from seeing them on TV.. I don't think I want to be on the receiving end of a serve from Djokovic.

goober 02-05-2013 10:33 AM

I have the same view.

Rec players usually don't look all that great even up to 5.0 from a spectators perspective. I think the problem is comparing them to people we actually pay to see in person such as pros or at least go out of our way to see such as D1 match or national junior tournament. Nobody sits around watching club level matches for fun. I really didn't do it until I started captaining and I was forced to.

omega4 02-05-2013 10:51 AM

Same for me but with regards to golf.

I watch pro golfers on TV and they don't look like they swing their clubs that much faster than me.

Then I go to the Masters and watch them live. These pro golfers swing their clubs so much faster than I ever could, even if I had no intention of hitting an accurate shot.

Although, I must say when I went to watch a live NFL game, the field looked much smaller in real life than it does on TV. It had me thinking for a second that I could play pro football!

Just for a second though as NFL players look pretty big in real life LOL.

Quote:

Originally Posted by AR15 (Post 7192950)
I was watching my team play last night and I had an ironic observation that I'd like to see if anyone else shares.

When I watch the players in my league, as a spectator, they don't seem to look like they play as well as they do when I'm actually playing against them. From the spectator point of view, it looks like their shots do not have as much pace as they seem to have when I'm playing against them.

The irony (to me) is that when I have watched (live in person) professionals play, their pace (and skills) seems much higher than I was expecting from seeing them on TV.. I don't think I want to be on the receiving end of a serve from Djokovic.


Govnor 02-05-2013 10:55 AM

My opinion on this is the TV angle has a lot to do with it. You don't appreciate how hard they are hitting it because the viewing angle makes it easy to follow in a simple straight line up and down your TV. Also, you also don't get much of an appreciation for the height of a pro topspin serve, for example, as you're viewing from much higher up and behind.

Basically, TV totally takes the difficulty of what you're seeing out of the equation. The same can be said for a lot of other sports, or events. Another that comes to mind is Formula 1. Mind blowing live, because the speed, braking, noise etc are amplified vs watching on a TV.

sureshs 02-05-2013 11:03 AM

The biggest surprise comes in table tennis. You can buy a true pro spec paddle and rubbers for around 100+ bucks, and have only a 5 by 4.5 feet area to defend, and you are towering over the net. Yet it appears like an ocean when playing against a high level player.

mikeler 02-05-2013 11:44 AM

I notice this too. Some guys I play that hit a hard heavy ball don't look like they hit as hard from a spectator's view.

Alchemy-Z 02-05-2013 11:54 AM

It's like pulling teeth watching my team they can be up 8-1 in a tie break and then squander 6 or 7 points in a row lol

I have got in the habit now if I finish early i ask the other guy if he wants to continue to hit while the team finishes up instead of us stopping and watching.

now I do go to my wife's matches but watching her bounce around in her little tennis outfits distracts me almost completely from play lol

dman72 02-05-2013 12:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Govnor (Post 7193433)
My opinion on this is the TV angle has a lot to do with it. You don't appreciate how hard they are hitting it because the viewing angle makes it easy to follow in a simple straight line up and down your TV. Also, you also don't get much of an appreciation for the height of a pro topspin serve, for example, as you're viewing from much higher up and behind.

Basically, TV totally takes the difficulty of what you're seeing out of the equation. The same can be said for a lot of other sports, or events. Another that comes to mind is Formula 1. Mind blowing live, because the speed, braking, noise etc are amplified vs watching on a TV.

This.

I watched some of that documentary about aspiring Jr. players "Unstrung", much of it shot from court level. The pace and kick on these guys shots was incredible, from that angle they looked better than any pro...but none of the people in the doc ever made it past the top 50, I believe.

On the other hand. I've watched guys from the next court at my club and thought, "oh my god, that guy is blasting it, looks like a pro!!"...and then I get on the court with them and it's no big deal. Then you watch the same guy from up in the gallery, and again, it's no big deal.

Perspective is a big factor.

IA-SteveB 02-05-2013 12:15 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by AR15 (Post 7192950)
I was watching my team play last night and I had an ironic observation that I'd like to see if anyone else shares.

When I watch the players in my league, as a spectator, they don't seem to look like they play as well as they do when I'm actually playing against them. From the spectator point of view, it looks like their shots do not have as much pace as they seem to have when I'm playing against them.

The irony (to me) is that when I have watched (live in person) professionals play, their pace (and skills) seems much higher than I was expecting from seeing them on TV.. I don't think I want to be on the receiving end of a serve from Djokovic.

I totally see where you are coming from. I would like to get video of myself playing because I never feel I am hitting with the pace I think I am and I might be. I just wonder what my game is like from the opponents perspective.

When I watch others in my club league play, I feel the same way. The game seems a lot slower than when I am in it.

Chivo 02-05-2013 12:20 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by dman72 (Post 7193631)
This.

I watched some of that documentary about aspiring Jr. players "Unstrung", much of it shot from court level. The pace and kick on these guys shots was incredible, from that angle they looked better than any pro...but none of the people in the doc ever made it past the top 50, I believe.

On the other hand. I've watched guys from the next court at my club and thought, "oh my god, that guy is blasting it, looks like a pro!!"...and then I get on the court with them and it's no big deal. Then you watch the same guy from up in the gallery, and again, it's no big deal.

Perspective is a big factor.

Sam Querrey is in "Unstrung" current ranking is #20.

JRstriker12 02-05-2013 12:23 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by AR15 (Post 7192950)
I was watching my team play last night and I had an ironic observation that I'd like to see if anyone else shares.

When I watch the players in my league, as a spectator, they don't seem to look like they play as well as they do when I'm actually playing against them. From the spectator point of view, it looks like their shots do not have as much pace as they seem to have when I'm playing against them.

The irony (to me) is that when I have watched (live in person) professionals play, their pace (and skills) seems much higher than I was expecting from seeing them on TV.. I don't think I want to be on the receiving end of a serve from Djokovic.

So true, but there's such a huge gap between even a good rec player and a pro. It's like watching your High School b-ball team and then going to watch an NBA game.

Sure you have those two kids who can dunk and anyone on the team would beat you big time in a pick-up game, but they look like they have no ups and look extremely slow compared to the pros.

Honestly if people recorded themselves and watched, they would have a real perspective and stop creating "this dude isn't a 4.0/4.5" threads. LOL!

dman72 02-05-2013 12:24 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Chivo (Post 7193667)
Sam Querrey is in "Unstrung" current ranking is #20.

Yes, you are right. I didn't watch the entire program. The snotty kid with the 2 tennis playing parents and the African American dude (not Young) were the 2 I saw the most of. Both looked like world beaters from court level. The African American guys kick serve seemed to bounce 12 feet in the air.

texacali 02-05-2013 12:26 PM

For me, it was watching a competitive figure skater or hockey player practicing up close vs. watching on TV or high up in the arena. The sense of speed and power up close is much more evident.

I know sometimes my team members play is affected by how cautious they are when they get into a match so the ball is not travelling as fast....I think we hit out more or experiment more in practice and pull it back some in a match. No real consequence right?

North 02-05-2013 12:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by goober (Post 7193356)
Nobody sits around watching club level matches for fun.

I like to watch them as living social psychology labs. Watching players' behavior & interactions in the setting of league or club tennis is very revealing.

The only down side is that if you are cynical about human nature, watching exacerbates that lol.

IA-SteveB 02-05-2013 12:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by North (Post 7193708)
I like to watch them as living social psychology labs. Watching players' behavior & interactions in the setting of league or club tennis is very revealing.

The only down side is that if you are cynical about human nature, watching exacerbates that lol.

+1. I like to watch a little bit of club tennis when they have to get subs to fill in. It always seems like you will get three 3.0 to 3.5 players and a sub might be a 4+. It's interesting to watch the frustration level of people playing against the sub ... glaring looks, muttering, etc. The same person will be cheering good shots when paired with the sub. Club tennis at our place you switch partners every set.

AR15 02-05-2013 12:41 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by goober (Post 7193356)
Nobody sits around watching club level matches for fun. I really didn't do it until I started captaining and I was forced to.

I wasn't scheduled to play, so I went to offer the team some support. League tennis is supposed to be a team sport.

VeeSe 02-05-2013 04:29 PM

I have the opposite view I think. When I am watching players that I play against from the next court, a lot of the time I think "oh man, no way I could hang with that" but then when I play them, I actually do ok.

Same thing with my serve. I recently got it videoed for the first time to see if I could notice anything to improve, and before I watched it, I was thinking "it's gonna look terrible on tape" but I was very surprised when I watched to see that it looked way better than I expected or thought that I looked while serving.

At least one viewpoint that is opposite from yours!

OrangePower 02-05-2013 10:08 PM

It's funny, I get a different feeling watching singles vs watching dubs.

When I watch a singles match with players at my level, it doesn't seem like they are playing that well. I see lots of non-forceful shots and missed opportunities. But then of course these are often players that can beat me!

Yet when I watch my teammates etc play dubs, I find myself impressed. I see good net play, good positioning, good pace on shots, etc. And I think, wow, I'm not at that level. But of course I am, and I am better than many of them in dubs.

No idea why this is.

floridatennisdude 02-06-2013 02:08 AM

I agree

Tennis is harder than it looks

goober 02-06-2013 05:31 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by AR15 (Post 7193738)
I wasn't scheduled to play, so I went to offer the team some support. League tennis is supposed to be a team sport.

Lending support to your team is not the same thing as going to watch a club match for recreation. Put it this way- would you go to some random club and spend 2 hours watching two 3.5 players you don't know play? I highly doubt it.


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