There are so many millions of people who play tennis everyday throughout the world. They play in public parks, country clubs, private tennis courts, and anything in between (i.e. against a wall).
Tennis is the only sport I know that begins with love and is a sport for a lifetime. I remember the great Sugar Daddy, Bobby Riggs who said in one of the many tennis clinics he taught, “Tennis is a sport you can play from cradle to grave.”
Why do people enjoy playing tennis? I believe because it is a classy sport. It is a sport you can play for as short as 15 minutes or as long as 3 to 5 hours, it all depends on your ability level and motivation. I was fortunate enough to play professional tennis. I had a world ranking in the ATP Tennis of 662 in singles and 457 in doubles. I had wins over players ranked in the top 200 in singles in the world and wins over players ranked in the top 50 in doubles.
In this article, I want to provide you with the three secrets to playing your best tennis. Of course, there are more than three secrets, but three secrets are enough to help you play better tennis.
First, there is no substitute to practicing, practicing, over and over and over again. Practice is the seed to building confidence! When you practice in addition to playing tennis regularly, you will feel a sense of accomplishment, you will feel that you deserve to win because you know for yourself that you have been investing the time to improve your game. So, practice at least two to three hours extra a week if you are a club tennis player. If you are a tournament player you should practice at least 15 hours a week, which equals to 3 hours a day, 5 days a week.
Second, visualize yourself hitting the tennis ball perfectly. Imagine yourself in the movie screen of your mind that you are moving side to side, running forward and backward, hitting each ball with perfect accuracy. Visualize your forehand, backhand ground strokes being hit over the net with 3 to 5 feet clearance. Picture every stroke you hit with perfect ball control. See each of your tennis strokes, feel each tennis stroke, and experience each and every tennis stroke you hit with confidence. Repeat this each time pre and post tennis game or match. By so doing, you are training your mind or inner game to manifest itself in your outer game or physical game. Tennis is a mind game once you have learned all the fundamentals of each tennis stroke.
Third, watch the big players or your favorite tennis pro on the ATP or WTA tour and copy their tennis style. Watch YouTube videos or television footage of your favorite player over and over again until you emulate their movements. One of my favorite players to watch when I was playing competitive tennis was John McEnroe (USA) and Guillermo Villas (Argentina). I use to watch McEnroe’s serve and literally copy his serve. I would watch Villas hit his ground strokes over and over again until I was mirroring Guillermo Villas’ ground strokes. It was usually after watching these great tennis players in a grand slam event that I mirrored their mannerisms. After all, why event the wheel, copy what the big players do and do the same. Of course, as your tennis game matures, you will begin to develop your own style and preferences.
So, there you are the three secrets you want to know to playing your best tennis! Remember, there is no substitute to practicing each and every day in addition to playing regularly tennis matches. Begin today if you do not already do so; visualize yourself hitting the tennis ball with each and every tennis stroke perfectly until you are confident in your mind and in your heart that you can execute it with ease and confidence. And, finally, do not reinvent the wheel, copy the tennis players on the tennis tour by watching their tennis until can have someone say on the side line, “Hey, that person hits the ball like Roger Federer or Maria Sharapova.” Before you know it you will be winning your club tournaments and filling your shelves with trophies.