There comes a point in a tennis players life when they have to shift from recreational playing to competitive playing. It’s time for you to check out some tennis tournaments. And no, not on TV. On the court – with you taking center stage.
Hold your horses (or is it racket?). Don’t run off and challenge Novak (it may be the real definition of an open tennis tournament but…), you need to take it step by step. Let me show you how.
Steps to Mastering Tennis Tournaments
Before registering for the next tennis tournament that appears on your radar here are a few things you need to put in place first. Remember, everything you do must have a purpose – to take you to the next level of your game.
1. Be Strategic
Tennis is a game of strategy, not just strength and skill. You need to be strategic in the way you approach every game and every tournament. In your strategic planning you need to determine 2 major things:
- Your skill level. Check your NTRP rating to check your skill level and select tennis tournaments to match. This is important because it helps you develop your game gradually and in a more professional way.
- Set tournament goals. What is your purpose in competing in a tournament? Sure it is to win, but then what after that? Set goals that will help you become a better player, possibly in a specific area and level of the game.
Have a solid strategy that will set you on your way to a successful tournament career.
2. Find the Next Tennis Tournament in Your Area
Hopefully, you are a member of a tennis club. If not, you are making things difficult for yourself.
Besides excellent training facilities, tennis clubs provide a wealth of information on everything to do with tennis. And for you, this means you get schedules of major tennis events in your local area or in areas you can travel to.
Finding these tournaments is not enough. You have to register and participate.
This is where your NRTP ranking will come in handy. It will help you register for tennis tournaments that are within your skill level. Let’s say your NRTP ranking is a 5.0, this means you will look for tournaments with similar rankings.
Find those tournaments and get going.
3. Assess Your Performance
After playing in a couple of major tournaments (they may not be as glamorous as grand slam tennis tournaments), but at this stage in your career, they are major stepping stones.
If you feel you’re doing well so far and that you can fare well in more challenging games, it’s time to step up your game. But don’t just rely on your feelings, let your points, ratings, and even expert advice from friends help you make the transition.
4. Pick on Someone Bigger Than You
Now that you’re confident in your game and performance, it’s time to pick on someone bigger than you.
Yes, there is a possibility of you being pummeled but then there is also a possibility of you bringing down Goliath.
What I am putting forth to you is that you should now be mixing the levels of tournaments you choose to take part in. Register for tournaments on your level and throw in a few that are above your rating.
These challenges will keep you pushing yourself beyond your limits. Besides, you get to learn firsthand how more skillful players play. Being on the receiving end of a better server has its way of teaching you a thing or two about better positioning on the court and how to return shots.
5. Follow Real Major Tennis Events
We all learn better by observation. This is why other sporting disciplines incorporate video analysis as part of their strategy to improve the players’ performance.
Tennis is no different.
If possible, attend major tennis events in your area or even in far areas just so as to watch how the pros play. If not, you can attend Wimbledon, the French or US Open, or any other major tennis event from the comfort of your couch.
As you watch them play, observe every detail, don’t just watch the ball. Observe the stance, the form, the legwork, everything. Your reason for watching is more for education than entertainment.
Time to Sign Up for the Next Tennis Tournament
There is no better time than now to take your tennis career to the next level.
You’ve treated it like a hobby for too long, it’s time to get competitive.
Register for one or two tennis tournaments in your area and start getting ready for them. The world is waiting for skillful players like you to keep professional tennis alive and thriving.