Best of Three
If you are anything like me, you’re missing tennis like crazy right now. Not being able to play or even watch live tennis has me itching to hit the courts. I have had a host of people tell me that one way to manage a period of unpredictability is to maintain a routine. For me, that means dedicating the amount of time that I’m normally on court in a given week to enjoying tennis in a different way. Here are my top three ways to not miss tennis (while missing tennis).
Find a set-up that works for you. For me, it’s a nice quiet spot with natural light and busting out some gear to hold or wear while reading. Oh, and yes, a soft blanket is a must!
Deep dive into a tennis podcast
I have only recently gotten into podcasts but now swear by them. The Racquet Magazine Podcast hosted by Rennae Stubbs is an absolute must for the tennis lover. Why? It is one of the few tennis podcasts that looks beyond the current happenings in the sport - this podcast treats tennis like a timeless piece of culture, examining not only the current on and off court action but also who and what has gone before and is coming up on the horizon. Check out their website here.
The podcast features current and former pros as well as coaches opinions on all things tennis. More information about the podcast is here.
Find a book to read about tennis
For me, picking a book is not easy - there are seemingly endless options! I tend to pick books that resonate with me on an emotional level. For me, that meant reading Andre Agassi’s memoir Open. He was the first tennis player, and really the first athlete, that I idolized - how could you not love the guy?! He epitomized style and skill and his book is no different. Open is an enthralling look into Agassi’s personal life and finding a new reason to play.
Finished a book and wondering what to read next? I like to use books that I have enjoyed as a jumping off point to new titles. In Open, the complex dynamic between Agassi and Brad Gilbert resonated with me, leading me to read Gilbert’s book Winning Ugly: Mental Warfare in Tennis - Lessons from a Master. This book is an absolute must read for anyone who wants to start playing tournament tennis. This book is focused on managing the mental aspects of the game and is an absolute must read for all tennis players - from those thinking about starting to play tournament tennis to experienced tournament players looking for an added edge.
Some of my favorite sports books.
Revisit some classic matches on youtube
Admittedly, Youtube has enough tennis content to get you through years of downtime - watching one highlight can take you down a rabbit hole (I may or may not know this from personal experience). I recommend checking out Wimbledon’s Youtube page - it has plenty of interviews, highlights and full, uncut matches in HD. If you’re like me, you can relive the 2019 Gentlemen’s Singles Final and stop watching at two sets a piece, Federer serving 8-7 40-15 in the fifth set and pretend everything went to plan… Another perk is that these matches don’t cut away on commercial break - you get to see everything that goes on during the changovers, which true tennis nerds like myself enjoy!
Hopefully these 3 suggestions help get you through the changeover we now find ourselves in. Hope to see everyone on court soon!
Rackets & Runners