Quality v Quantity
One of the fundamental concepts for a budding tennis player to grasp is that the quality of your practice sessions is much more important that the quantity of the practice sessions.
If you work closely with your tennis coach then try and develop a strategic development plan for quality training that reflects your needs.
There are usually two big mistakes that players make when they train.
- They practice without a purpose
- They practice too long and without intensity
Practicing Without A Purpose
A very common occurrence when tennis players train is they do not think out a plan, they go into the session without clear objectives and what they want to achieve.
For most people this means practicing inside their comfort zones and not challenging themselves. Most players are not aware that their training is not focused because they have never experienced those kind of sessions before.
Practicing Too Long And Without Intensity
This normally happens with more advanced players, believing the adage the more miles under the belt the better. That can be the case with overall general fitness, and players are concerned way too much on quantity and not quality.
For example practicing a serve they may try to hit 100 balls in quick succession, with balls stuffed in their pockets and too many in their hands. The question arises, is this normal when you serve in a match? If not then desist the urge to carry on this habit.
You would be far better off hitting 20 serves in a match like environment. Hitting the ball with proper purpose and focus in meaningful areas of the court.
Spend time on planning your practice sessions. Make a list of what you want to work on and how to achieve improving your shortfalls. You may have got into a habit of the same old routines over the years and have stopped challenging yourself.
Ask yourself pertinent questions like: How many times a week do you practice? How long do you practice? How focused are you in these sessions? What elements of your training challenges you?
A good coach will constantly think about the effectiveness of his sessions with his students, so there is no reason why a player can not bring this ethos into his personal sessions.
- Set goals
- Plan your practice sessions
- Challenge yourself
- Measure your improvements
- If the sessions are not producing results, change them
- Set an adequate amount of time per week for training
Follow these guidelines and you will notice the difference in your games far sooner than you would think.