You are on page 1of 20

Copyright 2012 | Peak Performance Sports | www.Peaksports.

com

1

TERMS OF USE
You may freely distribute this Peak Performance E-booklet to teammates, friends, and coaches,
as long as the entire E-booklet remains intact, as is (without any modification) including logo,
contact data, terms of use and copyright information.
The information contained in this document represents the current view of Peak Performance
Sports, LLC (Peaksports.com) on the issues discussed as of the date of publication. Peaksports
cannot guarantee the accuracy of any information presented after the date of publication.
This Peak Performance E-booklet is for informational purposes only. Peaksports MAKES NO
WARRANTIES, EXPRESS, IMPLIED OR STATUTORY, AS TO THE INFORMATION IN THIS DOCUMENT.
Complying with all applicable copyright laws is the responsibility of the user. Without limiting the
rights under copyright, no part of this document may be reproduced, modified or distributed
for profit in any form or by any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or
otherwise) without the express written permission of Peaksports and Dr. Patrick Cohn.
BY PROCEEDING WITH THIS PEAK PERFORMANCE E-BOOKLET, YOU AGREE TO ABIDE BY THE ABOVE
TERMS AND CONDITIONS WITHOUT LIMITATION.
Copyright © 2012 by Peak Performance Sports, LLC.
and Patrick J. Cohn, Ph.D. All rights reserved.

Copyright 2012 | Peak Performance Sports | www.Peaksports.com

2

Six Unforced ‘Mental Game‘ Errors Tennis Players Make Between Points :: Dr.Peaksports.  Sharapova. Copyright 2012 | Peak Performance Sports | www.  You  must  possess  mental   toughness  to   handle   match  adversity  and  play  consistent  high-­‐level  tennis.   The  top  players  in  the  game   –   Federer.  When   they   struggle  with   their  physical  game.  and  Safina  –  win   matches  with  mental  forAtude.  Roddick.   However.com 3 .  you  must  have  a  powerful  mental  game  to   match   the  power  of  your   ground  strokes.   they  are  able  to   raise  the   level  of  their   performance   and   win   matches  with   a   strong  mental  game. Patrick Cohn P E A K P E R F O R M A N C E S P O R T S   Six  Unforced  ‘Mental  Game’  Errors Tennis  Players  Make  Between  Points Introduc?on Tennis   is  a   huge   mental  game. Physical   talent   and   hard   work   go   a   long   way   towards   success   in   tennis.

  Inability   to   play   up  to  your  potenAal  in  matches  is  the  number   Copyright 2012 | Peak Performance Sports | www. Patrick Cohn P E A K Roger   Federer   discusses   three   important   keys   to   his   success   in   tennis.   professional.   and   tennis   skill.Peaksports.   All   three   components   can   be   improved   with   pracAce   and   training.   He   says   you   need   an   abundance   of   these   P E R F O R M A N C E three   components   to   be   successful   at   the   highest   level   in   tennis.   mental   toughness   or   mental   strength.   collegiate.   Federer’s   three   keys   to   success   include:   condiAoning.  and  club  players. What   are   the   top   advantages   of   improving   your   tennis   mind   game?   Most   S P O R T S players  with  a  strong  mental  game  can  perform   as  well   in  matches  as  they  do   in   pracAce   sets.com 4 .   But   your   physical   skills  are  limited  by  your  god-­‐given  or  inborn  talent. Improving   your   mental   game   of   tennis   can   be   the   fastest   way   to   improve   performance   and   consistency   in   matches   for   many   junior.Six Unforced ‘Mental Game‘ Errors Tennis Players Make Between Points :: Dr.

Do   you   perform   well   against   players   who   are   at   your   level   or   below.   but   P E R F O R struggle   to  bring  your  best  game   against  players  who  you   think   are   beOer   than   you   or   who   are   ranker   higher?   Improving   your   consistency   in   your   match   performance   –  no   maOer   who   you   play   against   –   is  another   advantage   of  an   improved  mental  game.com 5 .Peaksports. Patrick Cohn P E A K one   reason   players   contact   me   to   improve   their   mental   game   and   tennis   performance. M A N C E Some  other  benefits  of  improving  your  mental  game  include: • The  ability   to  sAck  to   your  tennis  strategy  and  not  change  your  strategy   because  of  frustraAon  or  over-­‐aggressive  play. • Help  you  cope  beOer  with  prematch  nerves  or  anxiety  during  matches. Copyright 2012 | Peak Performance Sports | www. S P O R T S • Improve   your   focus   during   points   so   you   are   able   to   concentrate   on   what’s  important  and  fend  off  distracAons  quickly.Six Unforced ‘Mental Game‘ Errors Tennis Players Make Between Points :: Dr.

   I  think  it's  more  le9ng  them  know   that  I'm  not  going  to  let  them  get  away  with  something.  and  I'm  not  just  going   S P O R T S to  kind  of  poke  it  back  and  be  content  to  stay  in  rallies. P E R F O R M A N C E • Improve   your   confidence   in   matches   and   manage   doubts   about   your   ability.com 6 .. • And   any   other   performance   problem   caused   by   your   inability   to   take   your  pracAce  sets  to  tournaments. • The   ability   to   cope   beOer   with   frustraAon   with   missed   shots. “My  aggression  out  there  is   my  weapon.Peaksports.   unforced   errors  or  dropped  games.”   ~  Andy  Roddick   Copyright 2012 | Peak Performance Sports | www.. Patrick Cohn P E A K • Get   the   most   out   of   your   hard-­‐earned   pracAce   by   taking   your   pracAce   game  to  matches.  .Six Unforced ‘Mental Game‘ Errors Tennis Players Make Between Points :: Dr. • Enhance   your   on-­‐court   trust   in   tournaments   and   not   forcing   or   over-­‐ controlling  your  strokes.

Six Unforced ‘Mental Game‘ Errors Tennis Players Make Between Points :: Dr.  composure.com 7 .  and   focus.   Your   aUtude   between   points   is   very  important  to   your   success  for   two   reasons:  (1)   You  have  to  process   each   previous  point  that  allows  you  to  have  the  utmost  confidence. Patrick Cohn P E A K P E R F O R M A N C E S P O R T S Managing  Your  Mind  Between  Points The   most  criAcal  task   during  the  match   is  to   control   your   mind   and   thoughts   between   points   and   during   a   change   over.Peaksports.   Between  points.  and  (2)  you  have  to   clear  your   mind  so  you  can  mentally   prepare  for   the   next  point.  you  must  give  yourself  the  mental  advantage  to  help  you: • Let  go  of  the  last  point • Manage  any  negaAve  emoAons  such  as  frustraAon • Relax  your   mind   for   a  brief   moment   so   you   can   focus  your   best  on   the   next  point • Process  the  last  point  to  help  you  improve  your  strategy • Stay  composed  and  in  control  so  you  can  focus  on  the  next  point • Mentally  prepare  for  the  next  serve  or  return  of  serve Copyright 2012 | Peak Performance Sports | www.

 Be  honest  now….Six Unforced ‘Mental Game‘ Errors Tennis Players Make Between Points :: Dr.  but  you  can  learn  to  minimize  mental  game   errors.  focused.com 8 .  Here.  I’ve  seen  every  mental  game  challenge  you  can  imagine.  How  many  Ames  have  you  lost  focus  a^er  you   became  frustrated  with  missing  an  easy  shot  on  the  last  point  and  it  cost  you   the  enAre  game? M A N C E Consistent  mental  toughness  and  preparaAon  between  points  leads  to   consistent  performance.  you  can’t  be  perfect  with   P E R F O R your  focus  and  mental  game.   S P O R T S Over  the  last  20  plus  years  of  helping  athletes  improve  their  mental  game  and   performance.  Your  top   mental  game  objecAve  between  points  is  to  remain  confident.  and  in   control  of  your  emoAons.Peaksports.   Copyright 2012 | Peak Performance Sports | www. Patrick Cohn P E A K Six  Mental  Game  Mistakes  Players   Make  Between  Points No  tennis  player  can  have  perfect  strokes.  the  hallmark  of  championship  players.  Likewise.

M A N C E FrustraAon  is  your  biggest  enemy  between  points.  Unlike  physical  errors  during  a  match. (1)  LeIng  Emo?ons  Affect  Your  Performance You  don’t  have  to  be  a  “racquet  thrower”  to  lose  control  of  your  emoAons.  you   can’t  play  the  next  point  with  focus. Copyright 2012 | Peak Performance Sports | www.Peaksports.   you  dwell  on  the  last  point  or  mistake.Six Unforced ‘Mental Game‘ Errors Tennis Players Make Between Points :: Dr.  mental  game   errors  can  linger  for  an  enAre  set  or  even  a  match.  When  you’re  stuck  in  the  past.com 9 .  When  you’re  frustrated.  It’s  like  having  a  monkey  on  your  back   while  playing  the  next  point  because  you  don’t  give  100  percent  focus  to  the   S P O R T S current  point.   I’ve  seen  many  players  that  appear  calm  on  the  outside.  but  are  churning  on   the  inside  because  they  missed  an  easy  shot  or  made  a  mental  error. Patrick Cohn P E A K P E R F O R I’ll  share  with  you  the  top  six  “unforced”  mental  game  mistakes  tennis  players   make  between  points.

" ~  Roger  Federer   M A N C E (2)  Allowing  Doubt  to  Thrash  Confidence You  simply  can’t  play  your  best  tennis  when  you  have  self-­‐doubt  about  your   ability  to  win  points  between  points.  Besides  being  frustrated  a^er  missed   shots.  Your  negaAve   emoAons  can  cause  you  to  over-­‐hit.  I've  always  been  a  very  relaxed  guy  so  this  is  not   really  too  drasBc  of  a  change.  many  players  begin  to  doubt  their  ability:  “Can  I  win  this  set?”  Or  “Why   S P O R T S is  my  backhand  off  today?” Copyright 2012 | Peak Performance Sports | www.com 10 .   "I've  always  tried  to  show  emoBons  as  much  as  I  could  without  really   disturbing  my  concentraBon.  change  your  strategy. Patrick Cohn P E A K P E R F O R You  carry  your  missed  shots  or  failed  strategy  to  the  next  point.  or  give  up  during  a  point.  play  too   aggressively.Peaksports.Six Unforced ‘Mental Game‘ Errors Tennis Players Make Between Points :: Dr.

Copyright 2012 | Peak Performance Sports | www.  you  can’t  feel  confident  and  you  sap  any  confidence   you  had  at  the  start  of  the  match.  you  can’t   perform  asserAvely  and  trust  your  shots. P E R F O R M A N C E S P O R T S Players  who  doubt  their  ability  may  not  take  risks.  such  as  change  up  their   strategy  when  needed  or  go  for  an  outright  winner.Six Unforced ‘Mental Game‘ Errors Tennis Players Make Between Points :: Dr.       “I  don't  have  confidence  so  I'm  not  playing  my  best.Peaksports.  With  a  lack  of  self-­‐confidence.”   ~  Jelena  Jankovic   A  big  role  of  the  mental  game  of  tennis  is  to  help  you  stay  confident  between   points  even  when  your  performance  is  not  up  to  your  own  expectaAons.  I  have  a  new  coach  now   and  he's  changing  liEle  things  in  my  game.  So  all  the  shots  feel  so  insecure  at   the  moment. Patrick Cohn P E A K When  you  have  doubt.  Players  who  lose  confidence  a^er  a   couple  of  missed  shots  will  play  tentaAvely  and  fear  making  more  mistakes.com 11 .

 Because  of  their  high  expectaAons.  You  must  learn  to  accept  that   you  can’t  be  perfect  and  you  will  make  mistakes.  have  very  high  expectaAons  for  their  performance  and  worry  about   leUng  others  down.Peaksports.  that   everything  was  going  to  be  the  same  and  that  I  would  be  able  to  go  out  there   and  win  any  match.  they  are  very  hard  on   themselves  a^er  missed  shots.  They  try  to  play  perfect   tennis.  But  it  wasn't  the  case.  If  you  play  human  tennis.Six Unforced ‘Mental Game‘ Errors Tennis Players Make Between Points :: Dr.” ~Amelie  Mauresmo You  can’t  play  your  best  tennis  when  you  are  beaAng  yourself  over  the  head   S P O R T S for  minor  mistakes  and  less  than  perfect  tennis. Patrick Cohn P E A K P E R F O R M A N C E (3)  Being  Too  Hard  on  Yourself Many  tennis  players  I  know  have  some  perfecAonism.  you   are  automaAcally  prone  to  making  errors.  unforced  errors.  perhaps  for  about  a  year  and  a  half.   Copyright 2012 | Peak Performance Sports | www.  I  struggled.com 12 . “When  I  finished  the  juniors  I  felt.  or  generally  not  performing   up  to  their  expectaAons.

Six Unforced ‘Mental Game‘ Errors Tennis Players Make Between Points :: Dr.   Rafael  Nadal  performs  his  best  with  high  energy.  When  your  energy  is  too  low  or   too  high.  He  is  always  moving  his  feet   in  the  warm-­‐up.  A  good  starAng  place  is  to  understand  your  intensity  or   energy  levels  when  you  have  performed  your  best.  your  focus  suffers  and  this  affects  your  performance.Peaksports. Tennis  players  should  know  their  opAmal  energy  level  and  have  strategies  to   produce  it  on  demand.  you’ll  tank  the   match.com 13 .  Roger  Federer   Copyright 2012 | Peak Performance Sports | www.  he  tries  to  pick  it  up  by  moving  his  feet.  If  you  get  down   in  a  match  and  lose  confidence  that  you  can  make  a  comeback.  If  you  are  over-­‐excited  or   lack  intensity  you’ll  have  trouble  focusing  on  what’s  important  to  execute  a   shot.  between  points  and  on  the  changeovers. Patrick Cohn P E A K P E R F O R M A N C E S P O R T S (4)  Not  Controlling  Your  Energy  Level Your  energy  level  and  focus  go  hand  in  hand.  When  Nadal’s   energy  level  drops.

Patrick Cohn P E A K doesn’t  need  that  same  level  of  energy  to  play  well.  What  you  think  about  is  what  you  get  in  tennis.  a  liEle  bit  sluggish.  When  your  mental  images  (seeing  a   serve  hit  the  net)  or  thoughts  (“Don’t  double  fault  again”)  are  negaAve  or   focus  on  playing  bad  shots.  If  you  think   Copyright 2012 | Peak Performance Sports | www.Six Unforced ‘Mental Game‘ Errors Tennis Players Make Between Points :: Dr.  . S P O R T S You  must  have  complete  control  over  what  you  see  and  feel  in  your  mind   before  each  point.   “I  felt  a  step  slow.  It  was  just  a  maEer  of  trying  to  stay   P E R F O R M A N C E tough  mentally  and  put  myself  on  level  terms.  you  program  your  mind  and  body  for  failure.com 14 .”   ~  Lleyton  HewiX (5)  Lack  of  a  Posi?ve  Image  or  Thought How  o^en  do  you  “see”  a  poor  serve  or  return  of  serve  in  your  mind  before   the  point  starts?  Mental  images  are  more  powerful  than  words  when  it  comes   to  programming  your  body  to  play  well..Peaksports.  Federer  is  much  more   calm  and  subdued..

”  You  should  avoid  over-­‐thinking  your  strokes   and  trying  to  correct  them  in  the  middle  of  a  match.  and  over-­‐analyze   your  game.  you  are  guilty  of  a  common  mental  error   called  “paralysis  by  over-­‐analysis.  many  players  think  too  much  about  how  to   “fix”  their  strokes.  If  you  do  this. Patrick Cohn P E A K about  hiUng  a  poor  serve  on  the  next  point.com 15 .  You  want  to  see  or  feel  a  good  serve  or  return   before  every  service  and  have  control  over  your  images  and  thoughts  between   point  and  during  a  change  over! P E R F O R M A N C E (6)  Over  Analysis  or  Trying  Too  Hard A^er  mistakes  or  unforced  errors.Six Unforced ‘Mental Game‘ Errors Tennis Players Make Between Points :: Dr.  It’s  too  late  to  change   your  technique  at  this  point.Peaksports.  you  are  programming  your  body   to  do  what  you  thought  about. Analyzing  or  thinking  too  much  about  how  to  make  a  good  stroke  can  cause   S P O R T S you  to  be  overly  precise.  try  to  be  too  perfect  with  shots.   Copyright 2012 | Peak Performance Sports | www.

 you  interfere  with  a  well-­‐grooved  moAon. S P O R T S Copyright 2012 | Peak Performance Sports | www.  Thinking  too  much  about   your  method  causes  you  to  Aghten  up  and  over-­‐control  your  shots. Patrick Cohn P E A K P E R F O R The  worst  thing  you  can  do  is  think  back  to  your  last  lesson  and  focus  on  six   technical  keys  you  should  improve  on  the  next  point.  You  can  clog  your  brain  by  thinking  too  much  about  how  to  make  a   solid  swing.Peaksports.Six Unforced ‘Mental Game‘ Errors Tennis Players Make Between Points :: Dr.  To  keep  your   head  into  the  game  during  the  match.  or  have  perfect  strokes.   M A N C E Save  the  swing  analysis  and  fixing  your  stroke  for  pracAce  Ame.  you  have  to  get  the  job  done  and  learn   how  to  win  points  even  when  your  strokes  are  not  stellar.com 16 .   Your  mind  can  only  process  one  thought  or  image  at  a  Ame—called  serial   processing.  or  over-­‐control   your  stroke.  guide.  When  you  steer.

M No  Ame  is  more  important  to  using  your  mental  game  advantage  than   between  points." Copyright 2012 | Peak Performance Sports | www.  You  must  learn  to  react  to  previous  points  to  help  you  stay   focused  and  confident.  it  can  also  help  you  deal  with  adversity  in  the  middle   P E R F O R of  a  close  match. Patrick Cohn P E A K Conclusion Your  mental  game  not  only  helps  improve  the  consistency  of  your   performance  in  matches.  Likewise.  At   S P O R T S Wimbledon  in  2007.”  She  wrote  posiAve   thoughts  to  remind  herself  including:    “You  are  Number  1.com 17 .  she  revealed  the  contents  of  her  notebook:  “My  good   thoughts  are  powerful.  my  negaAve  thoughts  are  weak.  you  want  to  have  a  clear  mind  –  free  of   Serena  Williams  reviews  important  notes  she  wrote  during  the  changeovers.   She  evaluates  her  strategy  to  help  her  improve  focus  and  boost  confidence.  You  are  the  best.   You  will  win  Wimbledon.Peaksports.Six Unforced ‘Mental Game‘ Errors Tennis Players Make Between Points :: Dr. A N C E distracAons  –  when  you  approach  each  new  point.

com 18 .Peaksports.  you’ll  have  an  improved  mental  game  of  tennis  and   avoid  making  unforced  mental  game  errors! M A N C E S P O R T S Copyright 2012 | Peak Performance Sports | www.  reinforce  in  a  confident  state  of  mind.  which  includes  having  a  mental   rouAne  to  prepare  for  each  serve.  adjust  your  energy  level.Six Unforced ‘Mental Game‘ Errors Tennis Players Make Between Points :: Dr.   and  prepare  for  the  next  point. Patrick Cohn P E A K Top  players  use  rouAnes  before  each  point.  Your  between-­‐point  rouAne  is  just  as  criAcal   to  peak  performance.  You’ll  want  to  pracAce  a  rouAne  that  helps  you  let  go  of   P E R F O R the  last  point.  If  you  can  accomplish  these  mental  rituals   between  every  point.

 and  develop  focused  rouAnes.Peaksports.Take the next step towards PEAK PERFORMANCE! TENNIS CONFIDENCE: Mental Toughness For Tournament Players 4  CDs  including  8  confidence-­‐boos3ng  sessions  on  audio.com 19 .   focus. A  "Tennis  Confidence"  workbook  to  guide  you  through  my  mental  toughness   sessions  and  to  overcome  mental  game  roadblocks.  Each  25-­‐30  minute   session  includes  one  mental  training  lesson  to  help  you  improve  confidence. Eight  "Tennis  Confidence"  Post-­‐Match  Assessments  to  help  assess  how  you  are   doing  and  provide  the  answers  to  make  any  adjustments  with  your  mental   game. •  Session  1:  Replacing  Strict  ExpectaAons  with  Process  Goals •  Session  2:  Focus  and  Developing  a  One-­‐Point-­‐At-­‐A-­‐Time  Mindset •  Session  3:  UlAmate  Tennis  Self-­‐Confidence •  Session  4:  Trust  and  Playing  FuncAonal  Tennis •  Session  5:  Poise  and  LeUng  Go  of  Mistakes •  Session  6:  RouAnes  for  Tennis  Confidence •  Session  7:  Managing  Your  Mind  Between  Points •  Session  8:  Overcoming  Common  Mental  Game  Obstacle Learn More TODAY! Copyright 2012 | Peak Performance Sports | www.  composure.

 Thanks  Doc!” ~Mike  Withers.Peaksports.  Junior  Tennis  Player Copyright 2012 | Peak Performance Sports | www.    Tennis  Parent Master  mental  game  coach  Dr.  Patrick  Cohn  can  help  you  uncover  the   beliefs  and  aHtudes  that  keep  you  from  performing  to  your  potenAal.  The   changes  we  saw  on  Danielle's  behavior  were   AWESOME!  Thank  you  for  your  guidance!” Dr.  Tennis  Parent I  already  have  improved  in  my  mental  game.com 20 .  Are  you  so  frustrated  with  your   performance  you  feel  like  giving  up?  Does  your  confidence  evaporate  when   you  play  in  tournaments?  Are  you  Ared  of  working  hard  in  pracAce  and  not   geUng  any  results  in  matches? “Dr.  most  likely  your   mental  game  is  holding  you  back.  I  knew  how  to   deal  with  it  and  move  on  to  the  next  point.  I   didn't  get  frustrated.  I  think   that  was  a  big  accomplishment.One-­‐On-­‐One  Mental  Game  Coaching  With  Dr.  He  also   created  the  Mental  Game  Coaching  Professional  CerAficaAon.  Cohn  earned  a  Ph.  Dr.   You’ll  learn  proven  mental  strategies  Dr.  He  taught   him  the  mental  skills  and  discipline  necessary   to  move  to  the  next  level.  Cohn  did  a  great  job  working  with  my  son   Joe  on  his  mental  skills  for  tennis. “Danielle  did  really  well  with  controlling  her   emoBons  during  her  matches  today.D.  Cohn  teaches  to  help  naAonally-­‐ ranked  Junior  tennis  players  get  into  the  winner’s  circle  (see  what  players   are  saying  about  him  on  page  3).  in   Sports  Psychology  from  the  University  of  Virginia.  He’s  the  author  of  the   popular  Tennis  Confidence:  Mental  Toughness  for  Tournament  Players   Workbook  and  CD  Program  and  The  Confident  Athlete  CD  Series. Get  the  Mental  Edge  with  Personal  Mental  Coaching Our  exclusive  mental  game  coaching  programs  will  help  you: *Take  your  pracAce  game  to  matches  consistently *Uncover  doubts  and  be  more  proacAve  with  your  self-­‐confidence *Increase  the  consistency  of  your  performance  with  prematch  and   service  rouAnes *Learn  mental  strategies  to  get  into  the  zone *Manage  distracAons  and  perform  with  laser-­‐like  focus LEARN  MORE  TODAY! ~Jennifer  Alamo.  I   played  in  a  tennis  tournament  this  past   weekend  and  played  with  the  amount  of   confidence  I  should  have  in  myself.  She  really   looked  in  control  of  her  emoBons  even  when   she  double-­‐faulted  or  made  mistakes.  Cohn If  you’re  not  performing  up  to  your  potenAal  in  matches.  This  significantly  helped   my  performance!” ~Melanie  Lewis.  Cohn  has  helped  1000s  of  athletes  over  the  past  25  years  to  improve   their  mental  toughness  and  get  the  mental  edge.  If  I  lost  a   point  or  made  a  stupid  error.