TOM'S ONLINE TENNIS LESSON
QUICK TIP - Consistency clarified
To play consistently does NOT mean to hit every shot directly to your opponent. I have covered this important principle before, but it could use more clarification.
There is a misconception about consistency that is the cause of much confusion in most players. In their minds, hitting directly to an opponent is consistency and hitting away from an opponent is going for a winner. In most players' minds it is simply a black and white issue! The idea of hitting away from an opponent WITHOUT hitting a winner is an anomaly. Yet, this is the skill that is paramount to learning the art of "working your opponent."
For example, if you are at the net and have a high short ball, by all means go for it! But, if the ball is low you should learn to hit the ball away from your opponent without thinking "winner." You are attempting to make your opponent hit the ball on the move, not to win the point outright. This forces him to make another good shot, but could also result in an easy set up for you to go for a winner. If your opponent does not give you an easy set up, but instead hits you another low ball, stay with the same strategy of hitting the ball away from him without thinking "winner." The point goes on until one of the players misses or finds an opportunity to hit a winner. This scenario is called "working your opponent"and is the missing ingredient in most player's match play.
IMPORTANT! In this scenario (without trying to hit a winner too soon) you have given your opponent two more opportunities to hit the ball. When you give your opponent more chances to hit the ball he is more prone to errors. If you apply this consistently over a course of a match you will make your opponent hit hundreds more tennis balls, tilting the odds of him missing in your favor. You are correctly and skillfully "working your opponent" and playing your percentages. The mark of a Tennis Warrior!
Anyone care to try it?
Your Tennis Pro,
www.tenniswarrior.com - "Where you can learn to think like a pro."