You’ve seen athletes like this before. Players who seem confident whether they’re winning or losing, playing their best or not doing so well. They just always seem so sure, so steady, so comfortable in their own skin. What’s their secret?
Tennis Confidence Tips to Boost Your Game
Understand that confidence isn’t arrogance. No one likes an arrogant player, but everyone is drawn to people who have that certain quiet confidence. Players who know what they’re capable of regardless of what’s going on at any given moment. They don’t have to flaunt it because they’re confident. Often it’s what separates the exceptional players, the champions, from the good players. What’s the secret to that kind of confidence?
1) Work hard.
Continue to improve and expand your competence on the court. Stay fit and know your strengths and weaknesses. Enhance your strengths and improve your weaknesses through consistent practice and training. Know you can execute each shot every time, regardless of circumstance. Whether you’re winning or losing, having a good day or bad day, in pain or feeling good, know you can make the shot. You always make this shot.
2) Set high goals, not expectations.
Being confident is knowing your abilities and remaining confident in them in every circumstance. Confidence comes before your shots, it comes from within. It can be reinforced by performance, but it shouldn’t depend on it. Having high expectations focuses on outcomes and your performance levels. It puts you into a succeed/fail mentality. It makes it easy to lose confidence when you fail. High goals, on the other hand, give you a direction that you’re moving in. Regardless of the outcomes of specific games or matches, you’re improving and moving toward greater confidence.
3) Train your thinking.
There is a conversation going on in your head all the time about yourself. This is your thought life. You think about your serve, your last game, your wins and losses, and everything you do. The way you think and speak about yourself has the power to destroy your confidence or to enhance and magnify it. Train your mind to think positively and productively. This is also one of the essential keys to mental toughness.
4) View mistakes and errors as opportunities.
When you’re losing or making mistakes and errors, you may be especially vulnerable to losing confidence. Real confidence, however, isn’t fleeting. It’s steady. It’s not dependant on your performance or circumstances, but a reality flowing from within. One part of this is knowing how to manage your mistakes. Everyone makes mistakes. Everyone has bad days. It’s part of being human. Champions, however, see mistakes and errors as opportunities for growth. Like Rocky, you always pick yourself back up and keep fighting, only better and better each time.
5) Believe in yourself.
Training hard is important. Developing your skills and your game is essential. You need to know your weaknesses and improve them always. However, none of this will matter if you don’t first believe in yourself. Don’t be afraid of any moment of failure. Don’t let a bad play or game or match shake your belief. You are not the sum of your mistakes. You are a champion in progress. Believe like one. Play like one.
A Word on Mental Roadblocks
You may find you have all the confidence in the world during practice and when playing non-competitively. But when you step onto the court to play a competitive match, your confidence vanishes. You may be doing everything right to build your confidence and play your best game, but something happens when you compete.
You may have a mental roadblock that’s robbing you of your confidence in competition. It could be a number of things. Fear of failure, concern about what others think, intimidation, or something else. If so, it’s important to uncover whatever the mental roadblock is so you can deal with it head on. Talk to your coach or instructor to begin the process.
Confidence Begins Inside You
The first step toward the confidence of a champion is belief. What you believe about yourself fuels everything you do from training to competition. It’s part of your mental strength. It’s the foundation of all tennis confidence tips. Champions believe in themselves first. Everything else follows. They’re confident because they believe, and because they’re confident, they win. What do you believe?
Giammalva Racquet Club is your Spring area resource for elite tennis training and conditioning. Contact Us for more information on professional tennis lessons and personal fitness training.