Tennis can teach you more than just how to hit the ball

Tennis is a great sport. Millions of people around the world have rackets and go on the tennis courts to run and hit the yellow ball. People have different goals in their participation in this sport. Some players step on the court with friends just for fun; others won’t let opponent win 1 easy point. Every day, there are thousands of completely new players who try tennis for the first time. Running after the ball and hitting it with the racket look like funny and simple exercise but it includes hidden messages. Tennis can be an unforgettable lesson that brings many advantages in different fields of life.

 

Many players have never thought that spending hours on the tennis court can teach them more than just how to hit the forehand or add more topspin on the backhand side. Appreciation of the values learned in the process comes with the time so coaches should strive for teaching different tennis and life skills but it is necessary to be patient to observe visible results. How much player can learn depends on coach’s approach as also on players’ work quality. Coach pays a crucial role in development process of an athlete so vision and priorities will decide what will be learned during the practice. Coach, who is result-oriented, will focus solely on improving tennis skills so lifetime abilities won’t be so important (but player will still get some skills). On the other hand, coach, who understands completely what the tennis is about, will make player improve tennis and life abilities in the best possible way. Coach has a full control over what is going on the court and this advantage should be used to prepare athletes for the incoming tournaments as also for the future life. Player’s role in getting life skills on the tennis court can’t be underestimated too. Coach can be a great addition to the process but without some awareness and eagerness to get knowledge, it won’t work, as it should. Tennis is a sport, which reflects the life in many aspects and it is a great opportunity to learn how to respond to these challenges. Learning from own mistakes is the best teacher ever so coaches should encourage players to try to solve the problems on their own on and off the tennis court. Below, I have listed situations that tennis players can encounter on a daily basis and learn lifetime skills while dealing with that.

 

Work hard and ……………. be patient

Tennis is a complex sport as the life is. Learning how to serve is one of the most difficult obstacles to get through by players. Tennis can teach us one important thing: you have to put your best and work hard. Be patient during the process because you never know when it is going to pay off. Some of the players improve tennis skills in a short period of time while others spend months on working on the same aspect. Everyone is different but one thing is the same – hard work always brings benefits. Be positive, continue the process and believe in your skills. Life is a big mirror of actions which are taken on the tennis court. You can’t expect being a president of a company after 3 months of work but you can definitely get more projects and recognitions in this short period of time. Hard work and patience are life skills that can change random person in really successful human being.

 

Focus on yourself

You are the judge of your tennis as also you are the boss of your life. There are no excuses for what you are doing on and off the court. It is not important what other people think and say about you; you have to feel well about yourself and you should be proud of your actions. If you lose to the lower-ranked player and other players make jokes of you, let it go. You are the only one who knows how hard you have prepared for this challenge. If you have spent hours on and off the court while putting your best, you are the winner and this is what counts. The same rule has to be applied in life. If you want to become an artist but “smart people” tell you that it is crazy, don’t listen to them. You know what you want to achieve and who you want to be so set goals and pursue your dreams. You are your own judge of actions while hitting the ball or changing the job.

 

It is not fair

Working hard doesn’t  mean that you will beat all the players who are working less than you. You can spend 6 hours a day working like a horse and you can lose to the guy who was partying for the last 3 days. Why does it happen? There is no one simple answer for that question. It can be because your opponent is more talented or because he plays better under pressure. Tennis is not always fair and the life is not too. You have to accept that many things are not as they should be. On the court, you can be cheated many times and you can lose the match because your opponent will call your ball out. You have to accept that and let it go. Work hard and find a solution for the next encounter. You will meet many cheaters in your life so you should be prepared how to react to these situations. Don’t judge because it won’t change anything – focus on yourself and use it as a motivation.

 

There are many skills that can be taught on the tennis court, which we can use successfully in our lives. Few aspect written above are just examples for coaches and players that tennis is a preparation not only for regional tournament but primarily for the biggest possible event – your life. Coach’s responsibility is to make players better on and off the court so we can’t think only about forehands and backhands. Tennis is the best teacher of life skills so more we learn on the court, better our performance will be in our every day’s lives.