It wasn’t that long ago that we all marveled at Pete Sampras. He was the best in a generation, and in our minds the best ever. 14 grand slams seemed like an insurmountable mountain for anyone to overcome. His serve was devastating. His forehand was overwhelming. He moved around the court like a cat, and when Pete was playing at his best, you didn’t have a chance.
Then came Roger Federer. He possesses a game so complete that it makes the great tennis legends drool with envy. Any shot that you can imagine on the tennis court, he can do. Federer makes the game seem so easy, but real fans know that it’s impossible to think we’ll ever be able to do the things that Federer does. It is impossible, right?
While most of us will never win ten plus majors, there are some very practical things that Federer does that we can do ourselves. You can’t get talent, but you can get a work ethic that allows you to play your best on the court. Then any natural talent you have will be able to flow. That’s what Roger does, and you can do it too. Let’s look at some practical things that you can do.
If you ever watch Federer hit his ground strokes, you’ll notice that he hits them the same way every single time. His technique rarely breaks down, which helps him to pull off those amazing shots.
Work on your stroke production, and work out any kinks in your technique. This will pay off in the end, because under pressure your shots won’t go flying into the stands.
Let Me See Your Footwork
Federer has amazing footwork. If you watch him move around the court, his feet seem to always be in position. Now, you may not be as fast as Federer is, but proper footwork will make up for a lack of speed. If your feet are in the right place, then your shots will be that much better.
Play Within Yourself
Believe it or not, Roger Federer doesn’t go out of his way to hit amazing shots. He actually plays within himself. He has enough confidence in his skills to know that he doesn’t have to hit a ball around the net post to win a match. He does what He has to do win by playing consistently. This causes his opponents to press because they know that you can’t wait for Federer to beat himself. Then they begin to make mistakes, which plays right into Federer’s hands.
You can do the same thing. Streaming winners only get you one point. But consistency and perseverance tell your opponents that they’ll have to bring their best if they want to beat you.
If you put these tips into practice, I guarantee that you’ll see results in your on court performance. You probably won’t be number 1 in the rankings, but you’ll be one of the top dogs at your club.