As with anything involving skill, there is always room for improvement. Even the most avid tennis player can benefit from simple tips to play their best game, every match. Whether you play tennis for fun with friends, or participate in tournaments regularly, adding a few simple tips can increase your skills and have you playing better with each and every game. Follow these 5 steps to improve your tennis game and you’re sure to notice improvement in no time!
Pay Attention to Your Opponent
Utilize warm up time to learn about your opponent. Once you’ve been able to assess their strengths and weaknesses, you can plan a strategy in your mind for game play. You can choose to attack your opponent’s weaknesses or play off their strengths. If you do not get enough of a feel for your opponent’s play during warm up, try out different patterns early in the game. Focusing on strengths, weaknesses, and play pattern will help you to formulate a unique plan to win the most points possible.
Develop a Pattern of Play
While having several different patterns of play can ensure you are equipped to handle any opponent, developing and sticking to one or two trusted plans can keep you focused and hitting only the strongest shots every time. Develop a plan that works with your own strengths and weaknesses to keep you centered on taking the shots you know will work. Some people find it helpful to record their practice sessions to analyze later. This strategy will give you an outside look of your playing and let you see what you need to change and improve to play the best game possible.
Increase Your Practice
The old adage “practice makes perfect” holds true in the game of tennis, as well. If you normally practice on the weekends, add another day or two during the week to tweak your game. Practice does not have to be lonely and daunting; you can join a club, take private or group lessons, or compete in tournaments. Extra practices will give you a chance to discover and improve on your own weaknesses and hone your strengths. This is also the perfect opportunity to develop and practice your latest pattern of play.
Play Against Stronger Players
Just like with lifting weights, growth does not happen without change. As your game improves, you will want to play against a wider variety of players. Though playing and practicing with stronger players may result in less wins, at first, this will eventually make you a stronger player over time. Playing against stronger players challenges you and forces you to up your game and gets you used to playing outside of your skill level during tournaments. The next time you enjoy a match with a player more skilled than you, invite them for a friendly game sometime. Playing against opponents above your level will be sure to increase your game significantly.
Physical fitness is the cornerstone to success with any sport. While tennis does not require a muscled, fat-free body, it is important to keep fit and healthy during play. Be sure to eat meals low in fat and high in protein and energy before practices and matches. It is also imperative to stretch before any activity and stay hydrated during each practice session, match, or tournament. Also be sure to get enough sleep before and after matches and check with your physician to be sure you are healthy enough to compete in tournaments. Proper attire and footwear is important to ensure you play your best and avoid stress or injury to your body.