The search for the holy grail?! In tennis terms, the search for top 100 tennis players in the world!? How do these players achieve this? What are they doing that we are not? Surely oh surely these coaches in Serbia, Spain and Russia have some magic potion that they are sprinkling into their players water…. After re-reading that last line- I think I will leave that discussion for another time! Are they pulling rabbits out of a hat!? Waving their wands? Abra cadabra and all that?
Come on look at Novak Djokovic – 64 wins to 2 losses this year, surely Harry Potter is his coach!!?? The Wizard of Oz? Paul Daniels? David Blaine?
OK, I am getting a little carried away now, but you get my point!
Of course not, is the answer. So what does make champions.. well… champions?
I am by no means claiming to be a big expert in this area and I have not gone to the depths of research as Matthew Syed has in his book `Bounce`…or ‘The Talent Code` by Daniel Coyle which discuss the theory in great depth that to master any skill requires 10,000 quality hours of practice.
I will attempt to put my humble spin on it. The key word for me in the statement I have highlighted above is QUALITY. If I was asked what champions have in common, I would break it down into 3 areas:
– QUALITY of Training Environment/Support Team – this does not mean facilities, but the environment that is set through players and coaches alike..
– Simplicity of goals/objectives in your game performed with the upmost QUALITY day in day out
– QUALITY of mind – the ability to believe and fully commit to your game style
Here at Soto Tennis Academy, we are striving for the above and demanding this from ourselves as a coaching team and our players. Will this lead to a champion in the future? This I can`t guarantee, but what I can promise is we will continue to push our boundaries in the pursuit of this… I can also say that the magic wand will stay in my daughters wardrobe for her next Halloween party!
September has been an exciting month for the Academy with Valeria Savinykh making her first WTA quarter final out in Tashkent and I am off to Sevilla tomorrow with Liam Broady for his quarter final match in the futures up there after a great few days training with us at STA. I am also excited to announce that we have had 3 new full time players sign with us last week- onwards and upwards as my Dad used to say as we climbed mountains in obscene weather up in the Lake District!
Play to Win!
Director, SotoTennis Academy
Inspiring Excellence | Tennis Academy Spain