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Tennis Warrior
August 2019 Article

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How to play tennis with bad technique

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Tom Veneziano

You are about to play a tennis match and you still have not improved on a bad shot. Maybe the bad shot is your forehand, backhand, serve, whatever! What should you do? The answer is, you go with what you've got. Just like a pro. As I have explained many times, you should not stress out about your failures and mistakes. This is especially important when playing matches. A match is no time to be making any major changes in the mechanics of your strokes. You go with what you've got!
Understand that all pros play with their best stuff for the moment, even if a stroke is not accepted as correct. But if a pro would like to improve a stroke he or she goes to work hitting thousands of balls until the stroke develops. Then they begin integrating it into match play. Often this happens automatically.
I remember how Bjorn Borg had an average serve when he arrived on the tennis scene. To win matches he did not rely on his serve but on his speed and tremendously consistent groundstrokes. Borg was smart enough to know that for him to reach a higher level he needed to develop a serve that was more of a weapon. And he did just that. About a year later, voila! He displayed an improved, dynamic serve with better placement and power. Of course Borg's fantastic new serve did not develop suddenly but evolved over the previous year.
The point is, Borg did not panic with his old serve because it was not correct. Instead, he played matches with that serve as he continued to practice behind the scenes.
If you have a shot that you feel is not quite adequate, do not panic, just play your matches. If you would like to improve that shot you must go to work like a pro, hitting hundreds of balls to bring that shot to the next level. Give the process time, and all of a sudden, like Borg's serve, you will be using your newly honed shot in match play. Do not force this process. Be patient! As I've said before, when the player is ready the stroke will appear.
Until that magic moment arrives, your job as a tennis warrior is to not let your poor strokes discourage you from playing at the highest level possible with the tools you have on that day. Think like a pro!

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This column is copyrighted by Tom Veneziano, all rights reserved.

Tom is a tennis pro teaching at the Piney Point Racquet Club in Houston, Texas. Tom has taught thousands of players to think like a pro with his Tennis Warrior System.


In Tom Veneziano's book "The Truth about Winning!", tennis players learn in a step-by-step fashion the thinking the pros have mastered to win! Tom takes you Step-by-step from basic mental toughness to advanced mental toughness. All skill levels can learn from this unique book from beginner to professional. No need to change your strokes just your thinking.

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