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Erratic play

Correct Grip will help produce consistency.

Correct Grip will help produce consistency.

Published: 24 Jul 2004 - 18:03 by rippa rit

Updated: 06 Jul 2008 - 12:24

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There is nothing more disappointing and frustrating than playing out of your brain one day, and then playing like a dog the next day.  Have you ever felt you wish you had gone back to bed, and started the day again, and be in a better rhythm?

Some ideas to help:

  • Try humming a tune during the hit up, and don't try too hard too soon to get "stuck into" your opponent.
  • Ever had a team member who was either in excellent form or played like a dog? And the latter seemed to happen during the semi finals!!!
  • Biomechanics also play a big part in shaping our consistent form.
  • The more our body and joints and racket swivel and sway around while approaching, and then striking the ball, the harder it is to accurately duplicate a stroke. This constant movement affects the timing. It also affects the accuracy. However, it probably will increase the power behind the stroke.

That has opened a "can of worms". This story started to get me a little worked up!.

This video shows a constant fluent approach to the ball with little jerking of the racket and body at the time of striking the ball - that is what makes consistent strokes.

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From rippa rit - 06 Dec 2006 - 15:04

well junaidq - there are several things that can and will help over time and not having seen your comp match I can only generalise:
  • Take your time in between serves, and take a deep slow breath, to get your heart rate to settle down and also for you to focus on the next point.  Also the oxygen to your brain will help you think.
  • If you go to the Home Page, Squash Library, there are various Subjects, one of which is Mental Skills, which also has subheadings  - take a read and jot a few things down that you think will apply to you.
  • The most common thing when you are relatively inexperienced at competitive play is to get up tight and think about all the things that do not help the actual performance at all, eg I am playing badly, this opponent is too good, I feel tired, worrying about the match, etc. Your head plays tricks on you!!
  • Try practising as though it is a comp match, ie no chatter, mucking about, etc.
  • Also look through Match Preparation and see if you can pick up a few hints too.
Introducing new concepts into your game takes time, so let's hope this is the start of something new.

Let us know how you go.

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From yaehbhi - 06 Dec 2006 - 13:51

Oh Rita, this looks so familiar!!!

I've been playing comps for 4-5 years now and still battling with my consistency problems.

I play much better during practice times (beat players higher than my grade), but just fall apart most of the time in comps. Have applied every possible technique I came across but it's still not helping. I'm improving but on a very slow pace.

What would be your suggestion to help myself WIN matches?

I play C-Res grade at the moment, am reasonably fit, practice at least once a week (sometime 2-3 time with solo practice in court) and taking coaching as well.

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