Tennis is certainly a great sport to join as a profession. Tennis is one of the top 5 sports in the sporting industry, which means it is a highly profitable sport. Tennis fans and lovers who want to join tennis as a profession start following at early age. It is said that the best age to start tennis is between 8 to 12 years. However, there is no right age to start playing tennis; everyone has different playing abilities. A player who has played for barely a year could possibly outperform a player who has been under coaching for years at times! It all depends on the attitude and determination of a person, and the amount of effort put in. If you are really passionate about the sport, I am sure that there will be a space for you in the tennis industry, no matter where you are.
Here are 10 tips which can help you to start off your tennis-related career:
1. Attend lessons under a coach
The recommended first step to start your tennis career should be to join a tennis class. It does not mean that you have to find an expensive tennis club and buy its membership. The coach can be your personal tennis trainer or even a friend who offers to train you at public courts.
However, if you feel that you prefer joining a club, most of the times, tennis clubs are available in the cities and you should have no prolem finding a reasonable tennis club to join. For private learners, make sure your coach is a credible and certified coach. Attending lessons under a coach will help you to learn basics and develop the tricks on the grass root level. If you are a new player and you start off tennis without a coach to teach you the basics, your long-run improvement may be hindered, compared to a player who starts off with the correct basic technique. Ergo, if you want to become a professional player in the future, be sure to learn your basics properly and correctly.
2. Follow professionals
If you want to start your professional tennis career, then it is recommended that you follow international tennis matches and tennis players. Watching live tennis matches on TV will also help you in developing your game. ATP World Tour and Grand slam events are telecasted live on Sports channels in more than 100 countries, thus it should be easy for you to access coverage of the games.
Take note of certain techniques and motions which the professionals use. Do not feel embarrassed about learning and copying techniques from them; there's a reason why they are professionals! Everyone has something to offer, and by watching professionals in action, at times, we subconsciously learn and try out some of their strokes as well. It's always good to experiment new techniques, especially when the field of tennis is so large. If you want to become a tennis coach, it is also good to have extra knowledge on tennis, such as the specifications of different types of rackets as well as the different strokes which professionals use.
3. Learn the correct technique
Shot techniques are very important in tennis. If your overhead smash keeps going into the net, change your technique. Emphasize on the flick of the wrist, for example. Proper technique and skills are required to play tennis. A correct technique goes a long way to helping you improve your overall play of the game itself.
4. Good fitness and health
Fitness in sports is essential to any player. If a player is not fit, he most probably would not perform well in the sport. In tennis, you have to make sure your fitness is up to the level to play the game. Your coach should be experienced in the field of nutritions, therefore he will be able to recommend the types of food for you to eat, and what kind of food to abstain from if you are to improve your fitness.
Additionally, gym and exercise-work is also necessary for a tennis player because like many other outdoor games, tennis also requires physical work and engagement. Tennis utilizes the whole body, from our head to our feet, thus we must ensure that our body is in tip-top condition at all times.
5. Idolize Top Players
Ideally, it is good for you to idolize or respect a professional tennis player. It helps as it serves as a motivation for you to improve your game, and you are more likely to want to watch their matches on TV, thus allowing you to be exposed to the game more. Alternatively, YouTube is a great source for you to find out more about your favourite tennis player as well. Players such as Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic are idolized all over the world, so much so that some even try to imitate their hairstyle. The advantage is that, of course, it is a source of motivation for you to learn and improve your game, feeding the hunger and desire inside you to be like them.
6. Develop a proper style
Developing a proper style is essential in playing tennis. Even if you are getting the balls over the net, your style of playing could potentially affect you as it could be easy for the opponent to read your game. Thus, vary your gameplay accordingly, and try not to have a style of playing that is too predictable for the opponent.
7. Shots development
Throughout your tennis journey, you are bound to face stronger opponents every now and then. Therefore, it is important for you to develop your shots, such as adding more power, spin, or varying the directions of your shots. A good player is able to pick out his opponent's weakness and thus develop on his shot which he feels can net him the most number of winners.
Before starting your tennis career, you should analyze your time and schedule properly, and decide whether you have the time to train consistently. If you are a person who has many activities on hand, then perhapds tennis is not the correct profession for you, as to become a true top-class player, large amount of hard work and effort is involved. And this definitely involves some form of sacrificing. If you are unable to find time or sacrifice other activities, you may want to think twice.
9. Mental Strength
Mental Strength is one of the most important aspect if you are to be a professional tennis player. In a tight game, or a physically taxing game, the player who edges out as the winner is normally the player with a stronger will and mental power. Thus, along with your sweat and hard work on court, training up your mental strength and willpower is also important if you are to play tennis professionally.
10. Self Belief
Confidence and self-belief play a vital role in a player’s tennis career. There is no point in starting your career with tennis if you are a pessimist, if you hold the view that you are weak. Believe that tennis is the right decision for you, and that you will excel in it. Once you have decided that you want a career related to tennis, switch your mindset to one that thinks positively; it definitely helps in your game as well as your career.