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When The Going Gets Tough The Tough Get Going

August 9, 2006 10:17 AM

Dr.Robert Heller

How is it that when you appear to be playing your best tennis and have a good lead, certain opponents have a way of turning things around, raising their level of play and stealing away our apparent victory?

In my experience and observations these individuals have cultivated their problem solving abilities and are able to quickly assess and alter their tactics, technique or mental skills accordingly. A recent opponent I played who is very fast and very steady, found that hitting soft balls to me was not working against me, so he started hitting higher and deeper to change the pace and take me out of my comfort zone. With another opponent, where I was returning serve quite well, he was able to serve harder and place it closer to the lines neutralizing my returns and taking charge of the points.

One thing these mentally tough players “don’t” do is get down on themselves when they are behind. Instead, they quietly and patiently find ways to make you play your best tennis throughout the match in order to earn a win.

The best way to beat them is to join them. Become mentally tough!

Dr. Robert Heller is a sports psychology consultant in Boca Raton, Florida and author of the mental conditioning CD-ROM program, TENNISMIND. For information on mental coaching, products and other services, you can reach him at (561) 451-2731, e-mail robertheller@adelphia.net or www.thewinningedge.usptapro.com




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