Rafael Nadal is undoubtedly one of the greatest athletes we’ve ever seen – let alone a tennis player. His humbleness and passion is admired by all. While there is so much we can from Nadal about technique and tactics it’s the other things that he does so well.
Here are 5 tips to learn from Rafael Nadal that don’t require any talent.
1. Tennis only has one gear: All Out
Every point is a big point when playing at the highest level. The moment Nadal steps on the court; he’s ready to play. He never lets up throughout the match, and he lets you know that straight from the warm up!
Next time you’re on court, bring the intensity from the beginning and try to maintain it for the entire match.
Check out the video below of Rafael Nadal before walking out on court.
2. Play Each Point Like Your Life Depends On It
A great quote from Rafa which truly shows what he values on the court. If each point is not to your 100% capability, why bother?
What we can control is our effort and attitude. Think what Rafa would do when there’s a ball slightly out of reach and will require some effort and chase to get there.
3. Solid defence is a great offence
I believe a great attacking is built off a strong defensive game. Being able to withstand aggressive balls, chasing the balls slightly out of reach, enduring and pushing through mental pressure – marks what true champions do.
Statistics show that when it is a pressure point (break point, or the point leading up to a potential break point) – players are playing conservative; with margin and low unforced errors. Having defensive skills in these moments could mean the difference in your match.
4. Turn Body Language Into A Weapon
We communicate most of our messaging through body language. Having slump shoulders, looking down..is sending signals to our opponent that we are in a bad frame of mind!
Do you ever see Rafa like this?
Even when he is losing Rafa has learnt:
- The match is not over until it’s over
- He has practiced he’s routine so many times that his body language is a part of it – positive and standing upright
5. Come Back Stronger After An Injury
Injuries can be demoralising and have a feel of setback on our playing careers. Rafa has learnt that through patience and hard work to recover from injuries – you can come back bigger and stronger. There’s a saying that goes “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger”.
Rafa has really embraced that quote and managed to repeatedly maintain his position in the top 10.
Rafael Nadal is a role model for not only tennis players – but should be by all athletes. He has determination that when playing a tennis match, thinking of what he would do is enough inspiration to play better tennis!
This blog was inspired by an article written by tennisgate.com.