Playing 7.0 mixed as a 4.0

Nostradamus

Bionic Poster
This is my first 7.0 mixed season that I am playing as the 4.0 with a 3.0 lady.

We played tonight for the first time. We won the first set 6-2. She was holding serve, she had some trouble with the guys serve but we broke him the 2nd time around. And I played lights out. Second set was a different story. We gave up three breaks and I took a dip. Then the 10 pointer was the same as the 2nd set. The magic we had in the first wasn’t there any more. We ended up losing 6-2 1-6 1-10.

Ladies, what do you like to hear from your male partner? Encouragement? Tips? Or just let you play your game?

Guys, what is your strategy when playing with a mixed partner who is 1.0 NTRP rating lower than you? The other team kept the ball away from me very well and I was active at the net. I think they were able to take advantage of her serve and not put up any put aways.

As the 4.0 I feel that it was my fault for losing to two 3.5s.
I think complimenting her really works well. you look so beautiful tonight, your backhand looks like Steffi Graf's. you hit your forehand like Lindsey davenport
 

Cawlin

Semi-Pro
I play in a dubs only league right now - I need to be brave about my own game and get into some singles play - but that's a different matter altogether. I've played a fair bit of men's dubs and used to play a fair bit of mixed. In my honest opinion, mixed is the ultimate expression of social tennis. As long as you view it that way, you'll be fine... if you view the game the way I do (note my sig - "If it's supposed to be 'just for fun', why are we keeping score?") then mixed will be frustrating for you, especially if you're a man. In truth, I am the captain of a mixed team, and I am on the roster as a player too, but only put myself in the lineup if we have no other choice and will forfeit a line otherwise. The reason I am captain of that team is a longish story, but for me, I do it as a favor to some dear friends for whom this team is very important, and when the previous captain stepped down, nobody else would step up. So I view my role there as more of a social coordinator or party planner than as a vested player.

Seriously though, I know this will be viewed as misogynistic and everything else, but playing mixed as the male is an exercise in frustration if you're in it for something more than social aspects. You could achieve the same value for your game playing rec mixed as a male as you could by going for a run, hitting a few buckets of serves, or hitting against a wall...

Look, the truth about recreational mixed is that if you're the male in the pairing, and you're coming at the game as anything but a social lark, then there are just too many pitfalls for you. The whole mixed match for people trying to win it is about finding out who has the worst woman and relentlessly going at her. So if you're a 4.0 man playing with a 3.0 woman, playing against two 3.5s they're going to be good enough to mostly keep it away from you and just go after your partner. The woman and the man BOTH on the other side will do it (and why shouldn't they, if they want to win?), they'll take lower percentage shots just to hit it at your partner because that's the winning play, despite what the averages say, and in doing so the other team won't be viewed as "bullies" because they are only 3.5s and both the man and the woman went after your partner...

Meanwhile if you're the 4.0 man and you go after the 3.5 woman, you'll be viewed by the other team, and probably your own partner as a bully. This is just the way it goes. If you win the match, in everyone's eyes you will have won it for either one of two reasons: a) you were a bully and beat up on the girl, or b) your partner played great and that's why you prevailed (and she will think she did everything just fine and find no reason to consider improving her play - because she's winning at 7.0 mixed, she must be doing well!).

If you lose the match it will be your fault because you should have been "good enough" to compensate for your partner's shortcomings... you didn't communicate enough, you didn't position her correctly, you didn't position yourself correctly, whatever... the 3.0 woman has no expectations on her in this match, and she knows it, and so do your opponents. The entire match is essentially on your racquet, but you're not allowed to play like it is...

If you hit overheads or volleys anywhere near the other feamle, as the 4.0 male, you should have enough control to hit those overheads and volleys where they have no chance of hitting anyone, especially the woman, and so you're a bully.
If you hit big serves, well jeez, you're a 4.0, playing against 3.5s... and you hit them to the girl too? You're a bully.
If you rip brick heavy groundies, you're showboating.
If you drop shot the woman sitting back at the baseline, you're showboating and a bully.
If you rip the woman's weak serve, you're a bully.
If you drop shot the woman's weak serve, you're a showboating bully.
If you aggressively poach the woman's return of serve, you're a showboating bully.
If you lob, you're showboating and being a chicken, not wanting to play "real" tennis.
If you're aggressive at the net in general, you're a ball hog.
If you take overheads behind the service line, you're a ball hog.
If you lose the match, you didn't communicate enough, or you communicated too much, or you communicated the wrong things or you let some aspect of your body language be perceived as something other than unconditional joy, which demoralized your partner and put her off her game, and... it's your fault!

I know everyone probably thinks I'm some kind of incel freak or something, but this is usually my experience playing mixed as a 3.0 and 3.5 (which means I don't even have the "4.0 game" with which to bully and showboat), with female partners ranging from 2.5 to 3.0. Not having that 4.0 game, never stopped people from accusing me of being a bully or a ball hog, or blaming me for the loss because I didn't do "enough to compensate for my partner".

I could go on and on and on (and I already have) with stories about mixed shenanigans, but I'll just leave this one here: My female partner in a mixed match once blamed me for not holding her serve all match... she had such a weak serve that she either refused to, or was unable to put up the middle and I felt like a soccer goalie on a penalty kick... finally I played back on her serve and she got pissy about that too... meanwhile, as she blamed me for not helping her hold her serve all night, the reality was that I touched 3 shots on her serve all night (2 of the 3 were poached putaways in separate games in the first set, and the 3rd was a mistake I made on a stretching poach in the 2nd set we were down 0-40... she didn't remember the three lobs that they hit her back on her serves that game that she blew or served up to the net guy to get into a 0-40 situation, she only remembered that break point that I made a mistake on and lost that service game for her...

Honestly, mixed doubles, as a male is something you do for your love life or social life, not for your tennis game. There are much more efficient uses of your time if your aim is to improve your game. Keep it in that "social" box and if you must, just look at the mixed match as an opportunity to get some exercise, maybe work on some particular aspect of your game, but don't worry about winning it - because if you care about winning it, you're going to be entering the land of pitfalls, especially playing as the 4.0 male with a 3.0 female partner. They don't call it Mixed Troubles for nothing, man.
 
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Dartagnan64

Legend
I felt like a soccer goalie on a penalty kick
That is the most apt description of the situation I've read. Feel bad I never thought of it. When people ask why I don't poach enough on their weak *** serve, I'm going to pull this one out.

Partner: "I need you to poach more on my serve if we are going to win"
Me: "I would but I feel like I'm a soccer goalie on a penalty kick"

Honestly, mixed doubles, as a male is something you do for your love life or social life, not for your tennis game.
Actually mixed is also great for working on your net game, overhead game and spin serve game. You face a lot more shots that give you a bit more time to work on form and technique in those areas.

All tennis is useful for improving. The rule of thirds applies. You should play lower level players 1/3 of the time, equal level players 1/3 of the time and higher level players 1/3 of the time. They all allow you to focus on different aspects from technique to handling pace to mental toughness.
 

Cawlin

Semi-Pro
That is the most apt description of the situation I've read. Feel bad I never thought of it. When people ask why I don't poach enough on their weak *** serve, I'm going to pull this one out.

Partner: "I need you to poach more on my serve if we are going to win"
Me: "I would but I feel like I'm a soccer goalie on a penalty kick"
When your female partner is serving a ball that the opponent can field within a step of the service line, or sometimes even stepping into the service box, this is exactly what you are.

Much of what I see in women's 3.0 and 3.5 dubs is exactly this... but for whatever reason, what I see from them is more like "cooperative rallying" (or cooperative volleying) than a tennis point someone is trying to win.

"Oh yeah... serves don't matter in dubs... you know... just get the point started... that's the ticket!" said nobody worth listening to, ever.
 

Traffic

Hall of Fame
Your can't give tips on the middle of a match.
A match is ONLY for what you ALREADY know how to execute.
Absolutely best advice. During the match, encourage your partner. Pick them up. Help them gain confidence. If there is a glaring hole in your team, then talk about how to do damage control. But it must be a team adjustment.

Also, playing with mixed 3.0 is an silly waste of time for a 4.0.
I assume any dude who is doing this is trying to meet single women.
Hope that worked out for you.
Hardly any single players for 40+. But a chance to play a different blend of tennis.

I've played 7.0MXD for 2 seasons now. I'm the 3.0 male partnered with a 4.0 female. It takes a special blend to make that work to beat two 3.5s. But if you have players at the upper end of their ratings, they will be competitive.

We typically beat 3.5 pairs because I played close to 3.5 level and my partner plays very aggressive and we pound the female opponent. If the 3.5 male wants to go toe to toe with me, we are pretty even. If he wants to go toe to toe with my partner, she will out-rally him.

We do run into a little trouble with 4.0M/3.0F when the male has great coverage of the court and the female can lob and keep the rally going. In this case, we mix up who we aim for as the 4.0 tries to over-cover the court. Gets burned enough times on where he WAS trying to cover the female.

It's all for fun. For the 3.0 player, it's a chance to play "up" with higher rated players. I imagine for the 4.0 player, it's a chance to work on their consistency and not feel too much pressure as it doesn't count towards their ratings. There's usually better than typical snacks and drinks afterwards because of the mixed company.
 

Cawlin

Semi-Pro
If the 3.5 male wants to go toe to toe with me, we are pretty even. If he wants to go toe to toe with my partner, she will out-rally him.
There's no going "toe to toe" between two individual players when you're playing doubles. Every single shot either of you play is influenced by the presence of the partner on either side of the court, even if you're only hitting CC rally balls to each other... so your partner can "out-rally" the other guy because he is not willing/able to hit a shot that you couldn't get to and do bad (for him) things with...
 

Traffic

Hall of Fame
There's no going "toe to toe" between two individual players when you're playing doubles. Every single shot either of you play is influenced by the presence of the partner on either side of the court, even if you're only hitting CC rally balls to each other... so your partner can "out-rally" the other guy because he is not willing/able to hit a shot that you couldn't get to and do bad (for him) things with...
Fine. My partner will step in sooner to cut the rally short before opponent's partner.
I have no reason to stop the baseline rally against my partner (male) because the partner (female) will rarely poach. I just wait for a weak ball or one lacking enough angle to cut-off. My partner will typically hit hard, low and angled against the female so her partner would have to take a big risk poaching while I'm still waiting for an easy put-away. Sure, we'll miss a point here and there. But the majority of the points go our way.
 

Cawlin

Semi-Pro
Fine. My partner will step in sooner to cut the rally short before opponent's partner.
I have no reason to stop the baseline rally against my partner (male) because the partner (female) will rarely poach. I just wait for a weak ball or one lacking enough angle to cut-off. My partner will typically hit hard, low and angled against the female so her partner would have to take a big risk poaching while I'm still waiting for an easy put-away. Sure, we'll miss a point here and there. But the majority of the points go our way.
Of course, this is solid strategy. I wasn't picking on that... I was just saying that the term "going toe to toe" is kind of a misnomer in doubles. It doesn't really happen by total choice because options are limited in doubles... if someone hits a sharply angled CC ball to me in dubs and I can't go down the alley with it because their partner is there, am I really going "toe to toe" with them when I hit back another CC angled ball? No, I'm hitting into the biggest space and playing the averages for my skill level... however... if that partner doesn't get over to watch the line, I'm going RIGHT into that alley as soon as I can.
 

Dartagnan64

Legend
I was just saying that the term "going toe to toe" is kind of a misnomer in doubles.
I think its a very apt description of the cross court shots hit between the deeper players. Yes there is an inherent risk that a net person may intervene, but more likely the outcome of these points will be an unforced error by one of the deeper players. So it is essentially a toe-to-toe scenario. In a mismatched pairing I tell my lower rated partner to get out of the CC rally with the opposing higher rated player ASAP. Hit it at the weaker net person even if it seems a stupid thing to do. It usually works out far better than "going toe to toe" with a superior opponent cross court. That weak net person is unlikely to put anything away and very likely to put a ball within my reach.
 

Traffic

Hall of Fame
I think its a very apt description of the cross court shots hit between the deeper players. Yes there is an inherent risk that a net person may intervene, but more likely the outcome of these points will be an unforced error by one of the deeper players. So it is essentially a toe-to-toe scenario. In a mismatched pairing I tell my lower rated partner to get out of the CC rally with the opposing higher rated player ASAP. Hit it at the weaker net person even if it seems a stupid thing to do. It usually works out far better than "going toe to toe" with a superior opponent cross court. That weak net person is unlikely to put anything away and very likely to put a ball within my reach.
When I am miss-matched in a CC rally:
1) I am baselining againste a 4.0M, I will lose the UE battle. So I have to look for an opportunity to hit DTL and challenge the 3.0 at net.
2) I am baselining against a 3.0F, I may still lose the UE battle, but more importantly, the 4.0M is going to cut my ball off quickly. I look to hit to DTL and hope he left alley open as he poaches.
 

Dartagnan64

Legend
1) I am baselining againste a 4.0M, I will lose the UE battle. So I have to look for an opportunity to hit DTL and challenge the 3.0 at net.
2) I am baselining against a 3.0F, I may still lose the UE battle, but more importantly, the 4.0M is going to cut my ball off quickly. I look to hit to DTL and hope he left alley open as he poaches.
TBH in both these scenarios I'm looking at getting something appropriately deep and coming in ASAP. I don't play the CC rally game.
But I've played with a lot of partners that think moving forward is a cardinal sin in tennis and think they can outlast anyone in a CC rally battle when clearly that is unlikely to be the case when facing a better opponent. They need to get that ball away from the higher level opponent ASAP.
 

kevrol

Hall of Fame
When I am miss-matched in a CC rally:
2) I am baselining against a 3.0F, I may still lose the UE battle, but more importantly, the 4.0M is going to cut my ball off quickly. I look to hit to DTL and hope he left alley open as he poaches.
I'd be hitting my best cross court lob to the 3.0F and following it in.
 

Dartagnan64

Legend
I'd be hitting my best cross court lob to the 3.0F and following it in.
Best shot against a 3.0 F is not a lob. It will be met by a lob, likely better than yours. Best is a good deep topspin FH at their feet. Gets a weak reply most of the time and takes away their time to set up a nice lob.
 
Men who play mixed with women who are lower rated are not serious about their improving their tennis game.

In this case, there is no emphasis on actually being a better player, it's just social time.
Doubles is already not the best thing for improving your game, and uneven mixed is a total waste of time.
Anyone who is serious about tennis is better off using the treadmill.

It's just not worth it as a male unless you're truly a total beginner,
and uneven mixed doubles is for socializing.

Plus, the lose/lose nature @Cawlin noted.

Perhaps I will play uneven mixed at the retirement home,
but not when trying to compete at men's 4.0 singles (very serious tennis, that is) 8-B
 
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Dartagnan64

Legend
It's just not worth it as a male unless you're truly a total beginner,
and uneven mixed doubles is for socializing.
Mixed is always worth playing if you are a male, let me count the sexist and non-sexist ways:
1) It often makes your life partner happy as you are "spending time together"
2) "quality time" playing tennis with your life partner is much better than "quality time" binge-watching "This is Us"
3) Hanging with athletic women in short skirts is never a bad thing (had to get at least one sexist comment in, but trust me men think like this)
4) That second serve always needs work.
5) If you are single and looking, its a no pressure situation to meet new women and it beats heading to the bar or dating someone from work.
6) It's more exercise on date night than dinner and a movie including what comes after
7) Serious women tennis players always want to play mixed as they get to face harder shots than they are used to in ladies league so you can be chivalrous and help their games along

Nobody I know plays mixed exclusively. But it has it's place in the pantheon of tennis. If you don't have a match with Nadal set up already, there's nothing wrong with getting together for a set of mixed doubles rather than sitting on your porch surfing the internet.
 
Best advice: Quit playing 7.0 mixed. Unless your partner is improperly rated, it will be a constant source of frustration.
Mixed leagues allow a 1.0 difference so more off court couples can play together. No one else in his or her right mind should endure such suffering.
 
Men who play mixed with women who are lower rated are not serious about their improving their tennis game.
Why limit yourself to dissing MXD? Wouldn't the same thinking apply to someone playing same-gender doubles with a partner who is lower-rated? Because anytime a doubles team is formed, there are going to be mis-matches in skill. That must mean that all doubles, unless it's with equally-matched partners, is a waste of time?

In this case, there is no emphasis on actually being a better player, it's just social time.
Sure there is. You're just not looking very hard for things to work on.

Doubles is already not the best thing for improving your game,
It's a great way for improving my doubles game.

and uneven mixed is a total waste of time.
Anyone who is serious about tennis is better off using the treadmill.
Using a treadmill is great for cardio; not so great for doubles directly.

And who said I can't do both?

It's just not worth it as a male unless you're truly a total beginner,
and uneven mixed doubles is for socializing.
You've already stated your disdain for doubles so it's logical that you'd feel that way about MXDs.

Plus, the lose/lose nature @Cawlin noted.
I have a great time at 9.0; none of the drawbacks that @Cawlin mentioned [delusional people like the partner he mentioned have all gotten weeded out].

Perhaps I will play uneven mixed at the retirement home,
With your attitude, I'm sure people will be breaking down your door to have you on the team.

but not when trying to compete at men's 4.0 singles (very serious tennis, that is) 8-B
:p
 
Best advice: Quit playing 7.0 mixed. Unless your partner is improperly rated, it will be a constant source of frustration.
Mixed leagues allow a 1.0 difference so more off court couples can play together. No one else in his or her right mind should endure such suffering.
As a 4.0, he could play 8.0 MXD, which guarantees a 4.0 partner, or 9.0, where he'd get a 5.0 partner.
 

Morch Us

Semi-Pro
This... exactly is what I meant as a mental strategy to engage in for the 4.0 male @MRfStop (the dog fight with opponent male). Most 3.0 and 3.5 males are over confident, and think they can go "toe to toe" with the 4.0 male. Remember it is a mixed match, and so the "animal instint" of the male says to fight the opponent male. And as long as you ( @MRfStop ) make sure this thing goes on, he will forget to target the 3.0 female, and that is exactly what the 4.0 male wants.

@Traffic as long as you are not a sandbagging male player (who really is a mid or high 3.5), you most probably are not going toe to toe with the 3.5 male, it is just an illusion (the brain selectively remembers the winners). The key is that you mentioned "toe to toe with opponent male"... not that you set up for your 4.0 partner.

If the 3.5 male wants to go toe to toe with me, we are pretty even
term "going toe to toe"
 

OnTheLine

Hall of Fame
This... exactly is what I meant as a mental strategy to engage in for the 4.0 male @MRfStop (the dog fight with opponent male). Most 3.0 and 3.5 males are over confident, and think they can go "toe to toe" with the 4.0 male. Remember it is a mixed match, and so the "animal instint" of the male says to fight the opponent male. And as long as you ( @MRfStop ) make sure this thing goes on, he will forget to target the 3.0 female, and that is exactly what the 4.0 male wants.

@Traffic as long as you are not a sandbagging male player (who really is a mid or high 3.5), you most probably are not going toe to toe with the 3.5 male, it is just an illusion (the brain selectively remembers the winners). The key is that you mentioned "toe to toe with opponent male"... not that you set up for your 4.0 partner.
@Traffic is not sandbagging ... but he does admit that the USTA computer "missed" him last year .... he has also won the majority of his 3.5 matches while playing up this year .... so there is that.

As a 3.5 female playing 7.0 mixed, I can go "to to toe" cross court with the 4.0 male for 3-4 balls but I am looking for either a DTL opportunity or a lob over the 3.0 female ... or even better, wanting my 3.5 partner to find a poaching opportunity

As a 3.5 female playing 8.0 mixed ... I am good for about 2 balls against a 4.5M or the same 3-4 against a 4.0M ... I am trusting my 4.5M partner will inject himself much more quickly than at 7.0


When your female partner is serving a ball that the opponent can field within a step of the service line, or sometimes even stepping into the service box, this is exactly what you are.

Much of what I see in women's 3.0 and 3.5 dubs is exactly this... but for whatever reason, what I see from them is more like "cooperative rallying" (or cooperative volleying) than a tennis point someone is trying to win.

"Oh yeah... serves don't matter in dubs... you know... just get the point started... that's the ticket!" said nobody worth listening to, ever.
And @Cawlin what 3.5 women's dubs are you watching???? Men return my serve from or behind the baseline. Women (at least the smart ones) are several steps behind the baseline.
Even in ladies dubs, I rarely if ever get to receive an incredibly weak serve from the service line .... that would be great, my match scores would look so much better. I may be able to stand a foot or so inside the baseline against a few servers, but not many.

And your description of match rallies is also quite foreign to me.

I clearly need to move to wherever you are to face these female 3.5 players .... my record would look so much bet
 
I help run teams where there are .5 and 1.0 differences in ratings. It is not for everyone but if you like a challenge and helping weaker players then you may enjoy it.
Now our teams pick the right types of players who have a positive attitude. We hold practices where we train the weaker player to be more than a target. The strong
player has to do their job. The guys have to be positive with no bad body language or eye rolling. Nothing worse than seeing your partner give you bad body language after
a missed shot.
People who play with weaker players get my respect. As long as people play tennis what does it matter where how and when.
I think this is a good rule for ALL doubles. If you're going to get visibly frustrated by your partners mistakes, stick to singles.

There's no way I'm going to get annoyed with the play of my 3.0 partner. They're a 3.0. I expect them to play like a 3.0 and make 3.0 mistakes. Expecting her to play up to the level I'm used to would be absurd.
 

Cawlin

Semi-Pro
And @Cawlin what 3.5 women's dubs are you watching???? Men return my serve from or behind the baseline. Women (at least the smart ones) are several steps behind the baseline.
Even in ladies dubs, I rarely if ever get to receive an incredibly weak serve from the service line .... that would be great, my match scores would look so much better. I may be able to stand a foot or so inside the baseline against a few servers, but not many.

And your description of match rallies is also quite foreign to me.

I clearly need to move to wherever you are to face these female 3.5 players .... my record would look so much bet
For the record, there is only one woman I've played at or near this level that I need stand at the service line to receive her serve, and she is, I think 29 or 30, was on a HS state champ or state finalist team in Texas (tiny HS playing against other tiny high schools) and played club (intramural) tennis at Texas A&M (couldn't make the varsity squad). She's just getting back into tennnis after 5 years of not playing at all and has a nasty "flat" serve that has real pace - upwards of 75 mph - and a nasty slice serve that if you stand back behind the service line, will peel out beyond the alley before you (as a nearly 50 year old man with quick feet) will be able to get to with anything but a desperate stab.

USTA forced her to "self rate" at 4.0, but she's really a 3.5 for at least another season or two while she gets her tmiing and "match head" back on track. She's got legit strokes and a legit (non-waiter's tray/frynig pan) serve, when she takes a volley at the net, she angles it for a putaway, she takes actual overheads, most often puts them away as well, just needs to get back into the rhythm of her game.

As for the rest - I've been going to support my wife's dubs matches for 2 years - so I've probably watched over 100 women's matches in that time. My wife's been on multiple women's teams ranging from ALTA C4 (3.0/2.5) to ALTA B4 (3.5 with a few 3.0 players on the bench). , I played mixed with intent (rather than only in social situations or emergencies when my mixed team would have had to forfeit a line otherwise) over a year ago myself but that was decidedly at the 3.0 level and was only the basis for my description of the serve-hold incident.

I'm not trying to be misogynistic with my remarks, though I know they will come off that way, I'm just stating my observations. I believe women are legit athletes and can play legit tennis, but I also am familiar with the coaching most of them get (and seek out) in this ara (northern suburbs of Atlanta). Most of the players are social players at best - you wouldn't find them on a forum like this because they don't seem to care enough about their games to seek out individual coaching and/or to even learn solid basics... it's a shame. I see a lot of women with REAL athletic potential playing tennis that either don't know or don't care how to get better at playing the game.

I wish I could find the kind of women playing at the 3.5ish level you're speaking about. I might still be playing mixed as something other than a social lark... and my own playing record in mixed would be a lot better too...
 
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ptuanminh

Hall of Fame
Played mixed double last night. My partner is a 4.0 lady. She is 50 so can't move really well, her shots are fairly weak. Our opponents are 2 guys 4.0 and 3.5, both double specialists.
My partner couldnt get even the easiest shot back. So i told her just to pop the ball high up, as high and deep as possible. Then i will move up and finish off whatever comes back.
We almost pull it off, lost 5-7. If she had followed that strategy better, we could have had a chance. I felt she was a bit embarrassed by playing that style. But we have no chance playing it straight forward.
Could be an interesting strategy for lower level mixed.
 

Cawlin

Semi-Pro
Played mixed double last night. My partner is a 4.0 lady. She is 50 so can't move really well, her shots are fairly weak. Our opponents are 2 guys 4.0 and 3.5, both double specialists.
My partner couldnt get even the easiest shot back. So i told her just to pop the ball high up, as high and deep as possible. Then i will move up and finish off whatever comes back.
We almost pull it off, lost 5-7. If she had followed that strategy better, we could have had a chance. I felt she was a bit embarrassed by playing that style. But we have no chance playing it straight forward.
Could be an interesting strategy for lower level mixed.
Endless lobbing is quite effective as a strategy at this level - most players (myself included) lack the patience for such a game and lack the actual skill to consistently hit the overheads from the service line often required to end such points quckly. It is also widely reviled (as "not real tennis" by 3.5s whose egos get blown up by being unable to handle lobs effectively.

I once played a mixed match where the woman LITERALLY hit no other shots but dink serves and lobs... played 2 back with her husband who was a weaker player, would tell him to "just stop trying to take those balls, let me get them back here" on dicey points. The match took over 3 hours - we won, but only because the lobber tired out before we did... 4-6, 7-5, 7-6. My partner at the time (was the same one above with the weak serve) was spitting mad at the end of the match because it was "not real tennis"... but they almost beat us with it.
 

Dartagnan64

Legend
Well whatever you do, don't do what I did last night. Played in a men's social doubles night where I was paired with the weakest player in the group. Honestly struggled with the simplest of volleys. Averaged 3 DF's per service game. No BH other than a pushy bunty thing. Didn't have a clue about positioning other than the "your side, my side" thing. Once our opponents realized his weakness they targeted him relentlessly.
Since it was social I didn't want to get all bossy out there. So I just went ahead and did the stupid thing.

Aggressively poached everything. Tried to finish every rally the first time it touched my racket. Tried to get some extra oomph on my serve to get a serve winner rather than a pop up weak reply that my partner would just volley off his frame into the net anyway. It started Ok but devolved into an endless run of errors.

I got so sucked into the vortex of having to win points on my own that I quit playing smart tennis and contributed to our loss. A lesson learned. Our fate wouldn't have changed if I would have played smarter but I would have avoided being a contributor. If you are the better player and your partner is struggling don't leave your comfort zone. You have to make fewer mistakes not more.
 
I see a LOT of lob specialist ladies at 8.0. It really, really tests my patience. I'll usually just go to the net and stand there bored, maybe play some cards with the other guy while the girls moon ball back and forth. Eventually the opposing lady will leave one short, I'll put down my hand, and put it away.

Those teams typically won't make it past the quarters in major tournaments though.
 

Cawlin

Semi-Pro
Well whatever you do, don't do what I did last night. Played in a men's social doubles night where I was paired with the weakest player in the group. Honestly struggled with the simplest of volleys. Averaged 3 DF's per service game. No BH other than a pushy bunty thing. Didn't have a clue about positioning other than the "your side, my side" thing. Once our opponents realized his weakness they targeted him relentlessly.
Since it was social I didn't want to get all bossy out there. So I just went ahead and did the stupid thing.

Aggressively poached everything. Tried to finish every rally the first time it touched my racket. Tried to get some extra oomph on my serve to get a serve winner rather than a pop up weak reply that my partner would just volley off his frame into the net anyway. It started Ok but devolved into an endless run of errors.

I got so sucked into the vortex of having to win points on my own that I quit playing smart tennis and contributed to our loss. A lesson learned. Our fate wouldn't have changed if I would have played smarter but I would have avoided being a contributor. If you are the better player and your partner is struggling don't leave your comfort zone. You have to make fewer mistakes not more.
Heh, you just described why husband/wife or boyfriend/girlfriend dubs pairings are often so perilous... I know from your other posts that it works for you and your wife, but in my relatively limited experience, the number of husband/wife mixed pairings that results in peaceful harmony is outnumbered by the number of husband/wife pairings that are pure misery, by roughly a factor of 1000 to 1.

You also described why I don't play mixed anymore in any but social situations.
 

Dartagnan64

Legend
Heh, you just described why husband/wife or boyfriend/girlfriend dubs pairings are often so perilous... I know from your other posts that it works for you and your wife, but in my relatively limited experience, the number of husband/wife mixed pairings that results in peaceful harmony is outnumbered by the number of husband/wife pairings that are pure misery, by roughly a factor of 1000 to 1.

You also described why I don't play mixed anymore in any but social situations.
Secret to my wife and I is that a) we trust each other to do our jobs and b) we are thick skinned enough to be told when we are not doing our jobs. And by jobs I mean, being in the right position, attempting the smart shot. The secret is never get on each other over execution errors. Discuss and correct tactical errors.

Where I think most couples break down is that they get negative over missed shots. If they miss a shot but it was the right shot to try, never berate them.

It also helps that we are reasonably even in skill level. Couples that are heavily mismatched will struggle. My wife plays twice as much as I do so she keeps her skills up.
 

Cawlin

Semi-Pro
Secret to my wife and I is that a) we trust each other to do our jobs and b) we are thick skinned enough to be told when we are not doing our jobs. And by jobs I mean, being in the right position, attempting the smart shot. The secret is never get on each other over execution errors. Discuss and correct tactical errors.

Where I think most couples break down is that they get negative over missed shots. If they miss a shot but it was the right shot to try, never berate them.

It also helps that we are reasonably even in skill level. Couples that are heavily mismatched will struggle. My wife plays twice as much as I do so she keeps her skills up.
Regarding negativity, when I play, I rarely grouse at my partners... occasionally I will give my wife a look or a quick word of criticism when she does something like standing at the baseline and hits a waist high volley that was going to be out by 4 feet (AGAIN and again and again...). She is just not very court aware - and I know I sound like a d*ck criticizing her here, but she never played a ball sport in her life before January 2017, so this aspect of such a sport (going to where the ball will be, not where it is now), which many of us take for granted, is a skill she had to learn starting at age 45... anyway... yeah...

So I don't often give my partner's much in the way of criticism. I usually am telling them to hush with their apologies - they will often say "I'm sorry, I never should have tried to hit that volley" or something like that - I tell them that I want them to go for any volley at the net they think they can put their strings on - I know this isn't the exact optimal best advice - but it's better than "Just let me handle the volleys" and my intent is to make them MORE comfortable at the net, not less... if they're taking too many risks and making bad choices by going for too many balls, I might say "hey, don't kill yourself getting to those, I've got you covered, and sometimes, the opponents just hit a good shot - that's what they're supposed to do, you're doing great, keep going for those ones you can reach!"

If I am playing with a partner who keeps serving up the net player on a silver platter, if it's too sudden for me to backpedal, I'll just turn away and essentially concede the point. Some of the women I've played mixed with get a little pissed at this, but those are the ones that are either used to people taking pains to around them even to the detriment of the percentages on the putaway, or used to other women playing the "cooperative volley" routine, but that's now how it goes. I know this isn't necessarily the "going all out" way to play, but we're are 3.5s and some 3.0s... and while nobody is trying to hit each other... quite a few lack the consistency to avoid doing so... and further, if my partner wants to play mixed, it's worthwhile for her to get immediate feedback on a crap shot that results in a putaway, to learn immediately that this is a shot that you need to improve on, even if in your women's dubs match, you have a better than 50/50 chance that the volley won't be put away by the net person...

I do get pretty down on myself for stupid execution mistakes and I guarantee you that I am my biggest critic - it is difficult for me to reconcile my own personal expectations for my play with the reality of what they should be when I'm in the heat of the moment in competition - I'm an intense player, and my wife describes my anger with myself as having actual perceptible mass... so I get pissed at myself, my body language gets sh*tty, and some of my partners take this as me beefing at them. When in reality, I'm pissed at myself for something like leaving a ball short to the net guy who put it away (as he should) and my partners are apologizing to me for missing the volley... which is absurd - it was my fault, I turned them into the soccer goalie with my sh*t play... it's just something I need to work on about my own game... my needs for that are a) to be less hard on myself at least outwardly would be a good start b) to have a partner that doesn't default to the position that the mistake was her fault (especially when it truly wasn't), and c) a partner who can recognize when I need to hear "don't worry about it, Cawlin, we'll get 'em next time"...

I don't see a ton of mixed + significant other partners berating each other - what I see is a ton of mixed partners that tighten up and/or try to play above themselves so as to either compensate for, or show out well for their partner... nobody wants to be the schleprock who sucks while playing with their own wife/husband/gf/bf, right (ironically, the people who love us are the ones who will still love us when we suck at tennis)? Perhaps there is a ton of berating behind the scenes that make these couples act this way on court though, so I could be wrong about that... but that's the case for me and my wife - that we get tight and play above ourselves with no "behind the scenes berating".
 

Cawlin

Semi-Pro
Men who play mixed with women who are lower rated are not serious about their improving their tennis game.

In this case, there is no emphasis on actually being a better player, it's just social time.
Doubles is already not the best thing for improving your game, and uneven mixed is a total waste of time.
Anyone who is serious about tennis is better off using the treadmill.

It's just not worth it as a male unless you're truly a total beginner,
and uneven mixed doubles is for socializing.

Plus, the lose/lose nature @Cawlin noted.

Perhaps I will play uneven mixed at the retirement home,
but not when trying to compete at men's 4.0 singles (very serious tennis, that is) 8-B
Mixed is always worth playing if you are a male, let me count the sexist and non-sexist ways:
1) It often makes your life partner happy as you are "spending time together"
2) "quality time" playing tennis with your life partner is much better than "quality time" binge-watching "This is Us"
3) Hanging with athletic women in short skirts is never a bad thing (had to get at least one sexist comment in, but trust me men think like this)
4) That second serve always needs work.
5) If you are single and looking, its a no pressure situation to meet new women and it beats heading to the bar or dating someone from work.
6) It's more exercise on date night than dinner and a movie including what comes after
7) Serious women tennis players always want to play mixed as they get to face harder shots than they are used to in ladies league so you can be chivalrous and help their games along

Nobody I know plays mixed exclusively. But it has it's place in the pantheon of tennis. If you don't have a match with Nadal set up already, there's nothing wrong with getting together for a set of mixed doubles rather than sitting on your porch surfing the internet.
Why limit yourself to dissing MXD? Wouldn't the same thinking apply to someone playing same-gender doubles with a partner who is lower-rated? Because anytime a doubles team is formed, there are going to be mis-matches in skill. That must mean that all doubles, unless it's with equally-matched partners, is a waste of time?



Sure there is. You're just not looking very hard for things to work on.



It's a great way for improving my doubles game.



Using a treadmill is great for cardio; not so great for doubles directly.

And who said I can't do both?



You've already stated your disdain for doubles so it's logical that you'd feel that way about MXDs.



I have a great time at 9.0; none of the drawbacks that @Cawlin mentioned [delusional people like the partner he mentioned have all gotten weeded out].



With your attitude, I'm sure people will be breaking down your door to have you on the team.



:p
So at my levvel (3.5) mixed beyond a "social context" just presents more downside than upside.
I could go back and refute every single point, but that would be tedious even for me... consider this:

If you have the time, resources, and inclination to approach your tennis game seriously, then you know that not all time spent on court is equal.

You also probably know that it's important to have a proper balance between practice/drilling/instruction and match play... that balance is different for everyone, based on their own personal situation and probably dozen variables...

I think that for many rec players who are truly interested in improving their game with the most efficiency, playing tennis with people who aren't of the same mindset is just not as effective a use of their time.

If your goals are to just play tennis and have fun - then great - that's social tennis and there is nothing wrong with that - and in my experience, that's what mixed is for the most part at this level - social tennis.

What does practicing your 2nd serve every 4th game in a mixed match where you may hit 50 to 75 serves total over the course of 2 hours benefit you over taking out a bucket of balls and hitting that second serve 200 times in 45 minutes or an hour?
What does the cardio workout you get in that 2 hour mixed match benefit you over 30 minutes on the treadmill or a 2 mile jog around the local HS track?
What does the footwork effort from a 2 hours mixed match benefit you that you couldn't get in a 30 minute hitting session with a like-minded, similar level tennis partner?
What does the stroke/volley refinement you get in a 2 hour mixed match benefit you that you couldn't get in that same hitting session or a private lesson?

All of the things you get out of a match, you can get with any sort of focused practice session or even a ball machine (though I know ball machines are more expensive than finding some people to play with, depending on where you live) EXCEPT for match play experience. However, if you're playing mixed as a male, that match experience comes loaded with so many more catch 22, lose/lose opportunities than it provides benefits over playing that same match with men.

The other thing you get from mixed matches is maybe some fun... and there is absolutely nothing wrong that, but remember, that whole "It's just for fun" thing is the very definition of "social tennis"... and that's the very premise of my post and @TimeToPlaySets post. I am aware that many of you don't appreciate @TimeToPlaySets delivery at times, and I know some of you probably think I am some sort of misogynistic caveman, but if you try to listen to the actual message, rather than your impression of the people posting it, maybe you'll conclude that what we're saying isn't so blasphemous after all.

Further, of course it's cool hanging out with women and doing athletic things - whether they're wearing short skirts or sweatpants - I happen to think athletically inclined women are appealing (read: sexy as he||) on many levels - and that's great too - but again, and ESPECIALLY if you're a single dude actually looking for dates, the lose/lose potential in mixed makes it kind of like an arm wrestling match between lepers - one wrong move and the whole thing falls apart.

There's nothing wrong with playing for fun, nothing wrong with having fun, nothing at all, in fact, ultimately that's the ENTIRE point for all of us... but... if you're a male and really care about improving your game in efficient ways, and are above the most beginner skill level, there are more efficent ways to do it.
 

Traffic

Hall of Fame
@Traffic as long as you are not a sandbagging male player (who really is a mid or high 3.5), you most probably are not going toe to toe with the 3.5 male, it is just an illusion (the brain selectively remembers the winners). The key is that you mentioned "toe to toe with opponent male"... not that you set up for your 4.0 partner.
Let me clarify. I will never willingly go "toe to toe" against a 4.0 player; male or female. I will lose the UE battle in 2 hits. I lack the consistency and placement a 4.0 hits instinctively.

I will only hit to the 4.0 when they are not expecting it or when when the ball is set up for me to hit at them as the high percentage shot. For example, a short ball hit near me while the 4.0 and I are both close to the net. At that point, the high percentage shot is a hard volley to their belly button or their shoe laces. At least for me. If I hit back at the 3.0 female at baseline, 50% of the time, it'll get intercepted. So if I hit TO him, 50% he's not expecting it, and if he is 50% he can't return it for a winner and gives me or my partner another try to extend or finish the point.
 

Traffic

Hall of Fame
Men who play mixed with women who are lower rated are not serious about their improving their tennis game.

In this case, there is no emphasis on actually being a better player, it's just social time.
Doubles is already not the best thing for improving your game, and uneven mixed is a total waste of time.
Anyone who is serious about tennis is better off using the treadmill.

It's just not worth it as a male unless you're truly a total beginner,
and uneven mixed doubles is for socializing.

Plus, the lose/lose nature @Cawlin noted.

Perhaps I will play uneven mixed at the retirement home,
but not when trying to compete at men's 4.0 singles (very serious tennis, that is) 8-B
When I first started playing doubles, I hated it. Was no good at it. Thought it was a waste of time.

Now, I really enjoy it. Probably same reason my son loves tennis AFTER joining a team and even more AFTER joining a co-ed team. He/I really enjoy the social interactions.

Once you've accepted you will play doubles, there are techniques and strategies that are different than singles. I actually find singles matches boring in comparison to a good doubles match. Great, hit baseline back and forth, see if you can change things up just a little to create an opening...12 hits later, someone dumps the ball into the net.

In doubles, there is the net person. That person takes away your highest percentage shot which is over the middle strap. Hard angle CC, DTL into the alley? Lob? Blast the net person? So many variety of shots. So many ways to win or lose a point. Nothing more exciting than a volley battle with 4 players up at net.

You don't win doubles at the baseline. You win at net. How is your net game?
 

Dartagnan64

Legend
If your goals are to just play tennis and have fun
Umm, isn't that the goal of everyone that plays tennis below professional levels. It's all for fun. All the other goals we have in tennis (improving skills, increasing in ranking, winning matches) are done for fun and recreation. I am not sure of any other lofty outcome from practicing tennis.

"It's just for fun" thing is the very definition of "social tennis"
Actually the "it's just for fun" thing is the very definition of amateur or recreational sport in general. We do three things in waking life: work, family/social responsibilities and play. I don't see where even high level rec tennis falls anywhere else but the play category. It's not helping the neighbor build a garage. It's not helping your kid with homework or coaching his soccer team. It's not your job. It's "for fun".

if you're a male and really care about improving your game in efficient ways
Would never say it was the most efficient way to improve one's game but it is a way to improve one's game that multitasks quality time with the opposite sex. So instead of a 30 minute practice session and a couple hours watching the Hallmark movie of the week, I play a couple hours of mixed with another couple and socialize after. All the while I've enjoyed myself, got better at tennis, got some exercise, perhaps met another guy to add to my men's doubles group, made my spouse happy, etc.
 

Cawlin

Semi-Pro
Umm, isn't that the goal of everyone that plays tennis below professional levels. It's all for fun. All the other goals we have in tennis (improving skills, increasing in ranking, winning matches) are done for fun and recreation. I am not sure of any other lofty outcome from practicing tennis.



Actually the "it's just for fun" thing is the very definition of amateur or recreational sport in general. We do three things in waking life: work, family/social responsibilities and play. I don't see where even high level rec tennis falls anywhere else but the play category. It's not helping the neighbor build a garage. It's not helping your kid with homework or coaching his soccer team. It's not your job. It's "for fun".



Would never say it was the most efficient way to improve one's game but it is a way to improve one's game that multitasks quality time with the opposite sex. So instead of a 30 minute practice session and a couple hours watching the Hallmark movie of the week, I play a couple hours of mixed with another couple and socialize after. All the while I've enjoyed myself, got better at tennis, got some exercise, perhaps met another guy to add to my men's doubles group, made my spouse happy, etc.
Why bother with trying to maximize your time spent on improvig since Wilson/Nike aren't calling to sponsor you, right?
 
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OnTheLine

Hall of Fame
Why bother with trying to maximize your time spent on improvig since Wilson/Nike aren't calling to sponsor you, right?
Although I really don't understand why I haven't landed a sponsorship yet .... I think you may be looking at everything entirely too all or nothing.

I work my *** off trying to become a better player. I play 5-6 times a week, sometimes doing a double morning and evening. I log 15-18 hours on the court per week. I have a strong desire to improve and I back it up with dedicated time on the court where I am singularly focused on improving.

BUT I keep it in perspective. I am a 50 year old woman. I play currently at 3.5. I can likely get bumped and be fully competitive at 4.0. That is probably as far as this ship will sail.

It is my recreation. It is my exercise. It can be a too-consuming passion. I relish everything the sport offers.

I am as serious as one can be while still holding a full time job, being a parent and a spouse (and a daughter of an aging mother, a housekeeper, a gardener, household handyman ....) and yet I can ALSO enjoy those more social light-hearted opportunities in tennis.

One can have it all ... the dedication and improvement AND appreciate the social side .... neither negates the other.
 

Cawlin

Semi-Pro
Although I really don't understand why I haven't landed a sponsorship yet .... I think you may be looking at everything entirely too all or nothing.

I work my *** off trying to become a better player. I play 5-6 times a week, sometimes doing a double morning and evening. I log 15-18 hours on the court per week. I have a strong desire to improve and I back it up with dedicated time on the court where I am singularly focused on improving.

BUT I keep it in perspective. I am a 50 year old woman. I play currently at 3.5. I can likely get bumped and be fully competitive at 4.0. That is probably as far as this ship will sail.

It is my recreation. It is my exercise. It can be a too-consuming passion. I relish everything the sport offers.

I am as serious as one can be while still holding a full time job, being a parent and a spouse (and a daughter of an aging mother, a housekeeper, a gardener, household handyman ....) and yet I can ALSO enjoy those more social light-hearted opportunities in tennis.

One can have it all ... the dedication and improvement AND appreciate the social side .... neither negates the other.
I completely agree with you. I get that some people probably don't agree with my approach to things, but it's working for me for me, as an almost 50 year old male who took up the game ~2.5 years ago trying to see how far I can take it before Father Time forces my level of play to decline, regardless of how much training I do... For some, the pitfalls of playing mixed are worth the upside, for others, not as much. I'm in the "not as much" category, but that doesn't mean I think people who choose to do otherwise are "wrong" - I may not agree with their approach, but I am not the arbiter of what is right or wrong for anyone but myself.
 

Cindysphinx

G.O.A.T.
Why bother with trying to maximize your time spent on improvig since Wilson/Nike aren't calling to sponsor you, right?
My answer is a little different than OnTheLines, but the same general idea.

When I started playing, I was a stay-at-home parent whose previous career was fast-paced, stressful, challenging, and occasionally fun. I loved being home and really took to it. There was much about it that was stressful and fun, but there was no challenge. I didn't have any need to get better at anything. I didn't have immediate goals, I didn't have anything to work toward.

Tennis filled that need. I could go into every week thinking, "OK, this week I need to accomplish XYZ for the kids, my spouse, the house. But I also need to find time to practice my serve and work on what I learned in my last lesson." Tennis had goals that were only about me, a journey that I didn't have to share with anyone or sacrifice for anyone.

That said . . . I'm in a weird place where I want to play at a higher level but can't seem to motivate myself to work for it. I should be practicing my serve *right now* because it has gone off the rails. But no, I'm going to drink wine and watch TV instead.

Part of it is what OTL said -- this ship isn't sailing any farther than 4.0. And if I work on my tennis, the best I can hope for is getting destroyed at the bottom of 4.0 until I get bumped back down to 3.5. Why bother?

Maybe I will take up the cello instead . . .
 

spun_out

Semi-Pro
I completely agree with you. I get that some people probably don't agree with my approach to things, but it's working for me for me, as an almost 50 year old male who took up the game ~2.5 years ago trying to see how far I can take it before Father Time forces my level of play to decline, regardless of how much training I do... For some, the pitfalls of playing mixed are worth the upside, for others, not as much. I'm in the "not as much" category, but that doesn't mean I think people who choose to do otherwise are "wrong" - I may not agree with their approach, but I am not the arbiter of what is right or wrong for anyone but myself.
mixed forces you (as the better male player) to be very precise about shot selection and execution. you need to decide what shot to hit (pace, location, spin) and actually hit it. and you have to do this under pressure of being the better player on the team who cannot lose points on unforced errors. if you think that you can't improve as a tennis player playing under these conditions, then you are no different than the guy screaming that mini-tennis is worthless.
 

Dartagnan64

Legend
Why bother with trying to maximize your time spent on improvig since Wilson/Nike aren't calling to sponsor you, right?
Exactly although somehow I sense sarcasm.

As OTL has said, there are different "fun" parts of tennis. There is the exhilaration of challenging yourself to develop new skills and completing those challenges. There is the intense joy of winning a hard fought match against a tough opponent. There is the social fun of playing with a good group of folks, laughing at the stupid errors and applauding the occasional great shots.

You can value them all or restrict your fun to the single task of self improvement. I'd rather enjoy all the moments tennis has to offer and these days I'm probably much more about having social fun with a few competitive tournaments thrown in there to test myself. But if you are the type that only values achieving mastery then anything but drilling and coaching followed by hardened match play is probably a waste of time.

But since Nike ain't calling, trying to rapidly achieve mastery isn't a big need for me. I can get better at my own pace knowing that at 55, there's only so much room for improvement.
 
@Cawlin

The simple fact is that most people will never get better.
They think that playing matches will make them better.
Yet, the most common players are the old hackers playing for 40 years who are still pancakers.

You are right about optimizing court time.
Most people play 2x a week. And that is usually doubles matches.
You will hit more balls in one drilling lesson than they do all month playing rec doubles.

You are in a very small minority in the tennis world.
You are basically a junior. You are not a rec adult USTA socializer.
I actually have been hitting with juniors at the club, as they are the only players with my mindset.
Forget levels, you are trying to hit advanced tennis strokes. The full game. This is work, not play.
Most dedicated players are not interested in getting better, or do not know how.
They make excuses about not being a pro who is getting paid.

You are correct that players who are serious about their development do not not play mixed.
You are undertaking something few tennis players ever attempt.
You are on a path of serious development.
You need to find players who are on your path.

Weed out the noise
Ignore the lose causes.
They can't help you.
You can't help them
They do not understand you.


I hit today with a friend.
  • We did serve/ROS practice. Did about 100 serves each.
  • We did a volley drill. Did about 100 volleys each.
  • Then we did a slice drill (hit only slices for 20 mins)
  • Then we played 2 sets.

    Not once did we "just rally" mindlessly.
You are stuck in 3.5 hell. Most are lifers. Find the guys who are trying to get to 4.0 and are willing to do the work.
EVERY single 4.0 I have met lists tennis as their main hobby accomplishment.
When you find the right guys, your tennis journey will shift into the next gear.
Until then, focus on lessons. The better your strokes, the higher quality serious player you will attract
Go to the higher end clubs and start asking for pairings.
Take a lesson at each club. Toss them some money and they may scratch your back.
 
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Lol, The first thing said on this subject, which was quoted several times was:
Men who play mixed with women who are lower rated are not serious about their improving their tennis game.

That is still what we're talking about

And this is not even factoring in the NTRP rating inflation that is actually sexist.
4.5 female = 3.0 male.

When I played a UTR8 female, she was UTR8.
 
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Dartagnan64

Legend
That's not what we're talking about, so quit your obvious trolling.

The first thing I said on this subject, which was quoted several times was:
Men who play mixed with women who are lower rated are not serious about their improving their tennis game.

And this is not even factoring in the NTRP rating inflation that is actually offensively sexist.
4.5 female = 3.0 male.
I'd re phrase it that players that mostly play with lower rated players are not serious about improving their tennis game. There is a role to playing occasionally with lower rated players as it's often your best in match chance to work on overheads. Mismatched doubles pairings are also a challenge on how to win with a bad partner and it's probably one of the most difficult challenges in doubles tennis.

But you won't improve if all you do is hit with lower level players no matter the gender. But I know many good players that do because they like tennis you know and aren't obsessed with maximizing their improvement.

And a 4.5 female = a 3.0 male? And I'm trolling? LOL. I know a handful of 4.5 women and they utterly cream their 3.0 husbands.
 

OnTheLine

Hall of Fame
I'd re phrase it that players that mostly play with lower rated players are not serious about improving their tennis game. There is a role to playing occasionally with lower rated players as it's often your best in match chance to work on overheads. Mismatched doubles pairings are also a challenge on how to win with a bad partner and it's probably one of the most difficult challenges in doubles tennis.

But you won't improve if all you do is hit with lower level players no matter the gender. But I know many good players that do because they like tennis you know and aren't obsessed with maximizing their improvement.

And a 4.5 female = a 3.0 male? And I'm trolling? LOL. I know a handful of 4.5 women and they utterly cream their 3.0 husbands.
As a 3.5 female it is not that hard to beat a 3.0 male

I think the farther up you go in rankings the greater the difference between male and female
 

Dartagnan64

Legend
As a 3.5 female it is not that hard to beat a 3.0 male

I think the farther up you go in rankings the greater the difference between male and female
Totally agree. At intermediate levels its a lot closer than at the advanced levels. The serve game becomes such a weapon for men in advanced levels.

I play mixed against 4.0 women and their 3.5 male partners on occasion and its quite clear they are pretty close with often the woman being more consistent and the male offering a bit more finishing power at the net.
 
Strange, maybe is regional. I saw a USTA 4.5 match and they were bunting like grannies playing for the first time. It was shocking that they were called anything above 3.0. not one person hit like they ever took a lesson...
 

Cawlin

Semi-Pro
Regarding this men vs. women rating thing...

https://www.etennisonline.com/NationalTennisRatingSystem.html

USTA said:
Q. Does the NTRP rate men and women on the same scale?
USTA said:
A. The NTRP is used to rate both men and women, but men's and women's ratings are not intended to be equivalent. When rating themselves, players should use players of the same gender as reference points. However, for those individuals wishing to compete against players of the opposite gender, the following can be use as a guide. At approximately the 3.5 rating for a man, a woman with a 4.0 rating will be competitive. When a man reaches the 5.0 level or above a woman needs to be approximately 1.0 higher in order to be competitive.
 
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