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A tennis player standing on a tennis court beside his shadow.

5 Things The World’s Greatest Tennis Players Worry About Constantly

06/24/2015, 6:00am PDT
By Kelvin Cech

Even the pros worry about their game from time to time.

 

Imagine waking up the morning of an important match. Your training is tip-top, your gear is in perfect working order and you’ve got the book on your opponent and how to exploit their weaknesses. 

You get to the court. You warm up. You step up for the first serve. 

And a rogue thought invades your mind just as you toss the ball up, “Boy I feel old today.”

The ball bounces somewhere other than the centre of your racquet and it ricochets off the top of the net. Fault! hollers the referee.

Worry is the enemy of progress on the tennis court. It accomplishes nothing except getting in the way of your game. The good news? It’s not just you. Even the best tennis players on Earth worry about different things from time to time. 

1. Age

While tennis is a lifelong sport, at times it can make us feel old. Age naturally slows us down, both physically and mentally. Serena Williams has been a dominating force in the tennis world for years, but age catches up to us all. Fortunately Williams’ power and intelligence for the game are showing no signs of slowing down. 

2. Injury

  • When will it happen? 
  • How bad will it be?
  • How fast will I be able to come back?

Injuries are a part of the game.Common tennis injuries happen because of the repeated use of the same movements, from swimming the racquet to applying stress on the ankle, knee and hip joints. If you’re worried about injury then the only thing you can do is take the necessary steps to avoid injury when you’re not on the tennis court.

3. Losing Ability

Confidence to attempt grand serves and intricate returns is just as powerful as having a teammate to push you during a match. Without confidence, we revert into ourselves, sit back and let the opponent come at us. This strategy will catch up in the long run, but it’s hard not to worry about just how god we are. 

Worrying about ability is a good use of energy only if we do something about it. Train, practice and dedicate yourself to your game so sustain the maximum your game for as long as possible. 

4. Losing Drive

Losing your passion for the game is a cruel reality of the sport. Whether you’re a weekend warrior or you’re playing 6 times each week, your game is only as strong as your willingness to play it. Tennis is like any sport, the energy you invest will equal the results. Losing your passion for playing the game is frightening when you love the game, but it’s an element we’re al faced with. The question then becomes what we do with that fear. Do we push through and re-discover our passion by:

  • finding new opponents to challenge?
  • learning new techniques?
  • joining up with new teammates? 

Tennis is enjoyed by different people in different ways. The reasons you play today might change tomorrow. 

5. The Ability to Finish

Back on the court, one of the most terrifying realities famous tennis players face is the ability to finish out a match. The intensity ramps up late in matches when the athlete can see the finish line, can taste victory. It ramps up for the opponent as well. Like a dog backed into a corner, this stage of the match could bring out their absolute best, in turn pushing the leader to be at their absolute best. 

Watch Milos Raonic finish a match in style. 

The fear then is believing you have another gear capable of putting your opponent out of their misery once and for all. 

And as is always the case in tennis, that extra gear is achieved well before you get to the tennis court. It’s found in the gym, on the track and in the mind. 

So get out there and put your game to the test. There’s nothing to worry about. 

photo credit: Kei Nishikori via photopin (license)

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