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Evaluate Pre Training Goals


This is a guide to assist setting goals for the Training sessions. 
Set the goals, then after training, evaluate how successful they were, and make notes to assist setting up the next training session.
This is a very methodical way of addressing all the areas in the game that need constant attention.
Revision is also a necessary part of training.
Use of the evaluation guides provided will greatly assist setting these goals.

Always have a goal - ask yourself:-
1. What do I need to practice?

  • Technical (the strokes)
  • Tactical (using the strokes to maximum benefit)
  • Physical (stamina, strength, speed, and flexibility)
  • Psychological (mental skills)

2. What will I do to accomplish these goals?

3. How can I identify the area that requires attention?

4. Set short term goals, eg keep the correct grip; and, long term goals, eg progress to a higher grade.  Only attempt one or two aspects at a time, and keep it simple.

Training goals are easier to set if an Evaluation Sheet has been completed following the match/training provided it was appropriate to the level of play. Some training has to be repeated many times and revised to make sure it becomes a playing habit.

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PSA Squash TV - CIMB Malaysian Open 2012

Technical

Unless you are a raw beginner, and have never played other sports, you will need to start from scratch.  However, if you have played other racket and ball sports it is likely you will have automatically developed some of the attributes of a squash player. 

This area would be the first step for a new player as they are specific squash skills:
  • Correct Grip
  • Correct swing, including backswing and follow through.
  • Footwork/movement
  • Consistency in length
  • A full variety/range of strokes
Link to Developmental Resources
Link to Basic Strokes

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Tactical

Tactical skills are more about placement of the ball, and game strategies.  Once having mastered the grip and swing, the following will help your game immensely:
  • Striving to volley
  • Driving to good length
  • Hitting the ball away from my opponent
  • Playing to my opponent's weaknesses
  • Getting to the T after every shot
  • Returning the serve on the full
  • Making my opponent work hard
  • Is my game repetitive
  • Am I playing the best game against this opponent
Link to Ten Fundamentals

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Physical

Playing squash will certainly help fitness, and weight control.
Once you have mastered the strokes, and tactics, these are the specific areas of conditioning for a squash player.
  • Stamina (am I getting out of breath)
  • Strength (do I feel weak in the legs and arms)
  • Speed/power (am I too slow taking off/acceleration)
  • Suppleness (getting stiff and sore)
  • Mobility (changing direction quickly and fluently)
  • Footwork/movement (moving fluently with rhythm)
Links to Basics of Physical Training.

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Psychological

The mind is a very powerful part of performance and how we think, and how we behave, will make a big difference to how we perform under the heat of the moment. 
  • Am I disciplined in training and competing (following the plan)
  • Is my mind occupied with positive goals (concentration)
  • Am I easily distracted by my opponent and referee, etc
  • Do I feel nervous and tense (out of breath in the first game).
  • Am I panicking when I start to lose (focus on the wrong things)
Link to Mental Skills

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