Gene’s Tennis Tip: February 2016

Sometimes we get caught up in the competition and forget the real reason we play tennis:  to connect.  Connect to the ball, the air, the racket, and especially to your partner and, yes, even your opponent.  I recommend the next time you are out on the court and you get upset, as I did in our Saturday doubles game this past weekend, you breathe and gather it in on the next change-over.  Think about feeling the ball on the strings and go back to basics.  Watch the ball, keep your feet moving, bend your knees, and most of all, enjoy the game.  Let your frustration out, but remember to gather yourself and enjoy the match and the moment.
In February, feeling the ball is harder because it often feels like a brick in the morning since it’s cooler.  Accept that on cool days you will not get the same pop and feel you will on a warm summer day in LA.  Make solid contact and try to feel the ball as best you can.  If you can’t feel the ball, probably no one else can either.  Work though it and enjoy your time on court.  Try to leave judgment at home and just work on your game.  Leave the excuses out of it too.  No one cares that you have an ingrown toenail or that you jammed your pinky taking out the trash two days ago.  If you step on court, do it with grace and if you lose your grace, get it back by telling everyone what a great time you are having and complimenting their good play.  If you do this, more folks will want to play with you, even when you and your tennis are not at their grandest.

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