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give me motivation

Published: 26 Oct 2009 - 06:27 by aprice1985

Updated: 04 Dec 2009 - 14:09

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I write in one simple hope - that people out there can rekindle my enjoyment of squash!  I have been playing for about 8 years and have reached the grand old age of 24!  Over the past few months i have been feeling like i am losing skill not gaining it despite individual coaching once a month, team coaching once a week and playing maybe 3 times a week.  I am making the same mistakes as i have always made and just don't seem to be going forwards at all and losing matches i feel i should win.  My main skill is my fitness and refusal to give up on points not technical!  I am now thinking of giving it up in order to find something that relieves stress instead of just causing more.

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From rippa rit - 04 Dec 2009 - 14:09

Yes, it is not too late to send a video.  Use your phone to take the video and we can see how it turns out.  I do not need too much footage to get the general idea of where you are at.

Some times more training is not better.  Take the time to plan what you are doing and how you are proposing to go about it.  Use our search feature too for more ideas.  Use the Library more, write stuff down, and you only need a couple of small things, eg "watch the ball at all times" and this should then bring about movement that will help you; get out of the opponent's way, look at the ball squarely, not as a fly over your shoulder, move into a safe position so you can takeoff immediately your opponent strikes the ball.....

Squash is a great sport for fitness and well being and you do not need an army to do it.

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From aprice1985 - 04 Dec 2009 - 09:46

I have survived the onlsaught of despair and am still playing, in fact not as much as i would like and am even having to think about jioning another club to try to get more match time but within the student budget!

The comments here were all useful but here, potentially for the benefit of others is what helped me:

Stop practicing!  I had almost been doing too many drills compared to my match time, I am not a big fan of training and find it boring and my more instinctive style doesn't enjoy the restricted games.  As a result of not being on my uni team I could no longer use their training but am now thinking of going back to just using my original coach for occasional advice and brush up.  I ended up still playing as i forgot to withdraw from the league and didn't want to pull out late but am improving as i play (question coming in other posts!)

The solo practice is coming but research is a demanding task master so first time for lunch, then for pre-work gym then for solo practice.

The comment of "you suck" (I only just read the amended version) did help, it made me remember that hey, i may suck at squash but I am a year off qualifying as a doctor with an additional research degree, who cares how good I am at squash, jsut play to enjoy and remember it is just a game, trying to put matches out of my head once i leave the leisure centre helps.

Dropshot, if only i had an audience cheering me on, the most we get is some bored school kids learning new ways to swear from me.

Rita, I was offered some e-coaching months ago but was away in Kenya at the time, can i still take advantage, once i find a decent video camera?

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From drop-shot - 29 Oct 2009 - 00:50

Mike's coment makes the most of sense for me, Arthur. Rita's thoughts are still valid and crucial, but it is very taxing to fulfill her expectations :) so take it easy, mate. RELAX! I'd say - hang the racket for one month. Then come back. With hunger. Start solo trainings, focus on yourself not on the audience cheering you. Back to basics. Good length, good grip, good footwork, high lobs, delicate drop shots... this is what you need IMHO

Then I'd go for exhibicionistic challenge called e-coach. Rita&Ray are so experienced and helping that you can't believe...

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From mike - 27 Oct 2009 - 14:19

Aprice, try taking squash less seriously for a month. Don't worry about improving, analysing your weaknesses, thinking tactically, considering your oppponent, avoiding errors, winning etcetera.

Just watch the ball and take pleasure in hitting it (satisfying feeling) and running. I think you're probably suffering mental overload combined with the frustration of doing work and not seeing improvement.

Take some time to clear the mental clutter and just play. If you can have fun for a while your motivation will probably come back.

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From hamburglar - 27 Oct 2009 - 05:25   -   Updated: 28 Oct 2009 - 01:43

Here's some motivation


You suck?


just kidding, I'm changing what i wrote before because this helps me more. When i lose, it's usually because i'm hitting the ball too hard, or not hitting an appropriate shot for where the opponent is on the court.

try thinking about where you're hitting the ball (1st and 2nd bounce) rather than how hard you're hitting it. What helped me today is choosing my shot based on where the opponent is. That makes me get into position so I can actually have some options, and it also keeps me watching the opponent to see where they are and how well they're retreiving.

If i hit a good shot, and they hit a better one, then at least i know i'm playing better percentages.




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From rippa rit - 26 Oct 2009 - 07:05

arthur - this is not the first time you have got a bit jaded with squash.  Yes it is frustrating when you feel as though the more the practice the worse it gets.  Personally, I just keep working through this phase and it does come out ok in the end.  Stopping never really works for me.  Things to help this might be.  Change your training partners, go to another club - change how you are training in other words.  When my strokes go off I would recommend pair routines (repetitive practice combining skills in a more tactical way), pair drills (individual repetitive skill practice) where the emphasis is not on the winning or losing, but on the actual skill itself.  Don't be hard on yourself.  Sooo -

1. Pick a skill

2. Go to the Squash Library and pick out the important key factors in the stroke, eg technique, hard or soft, high or low shot, full or short swing, front wall targets, body/feet positioning.

3. Find a partner who is also keen to improve their game.  Start with a solo drill and a ball each with one playing the forehand side and the other the backhand. Then change sides.

4. Progress to a drill involving the same skill. 

5. Progress to a pair routine involving the skill (not too complex).

This whole thing might take 40 minutes, then spend 10 minutes having a game focussing on the strokes practised.  Try not to go out and belt the opponent off the court.  You might need to do this type training using these same shots two or three times before moving on to another skill.

Warning - competition does not help your skills, especially when you are being pushed and rushing around.  This only makes your technique sloppy as your feet are never settled, and the swing loses its correctness.  Skills have to become automatic when under pressure and training repetitively helps you recognise the shots as they present themselves during a match.

I hope this helps.  You have to make this happen.  Having a spell for a few weeks might help though it never really helped me that much.  Don't play anyone and just solo train might also be a way.

Let's know how it goes.  Hey, you can always try our e-coach and compare it with what your virtual coach is saying, oops!

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