[Updated on 1 August 2022] Preparing mentally is a practice of any competitive sport. To visually bring yourself to a state of mind of winning. Along with practice and training, constantly reminding yourself of your ability to compete gives you the confidence of playing to win, versus playing not to lose. This post serves as a basic map to bear in mind for every beginning of each serve for the rally.
A mentally strong and calm mind. To be able to make decisions and act quickly without hesitation is a key characteristic to being mentally strong. Motivate yourself with these physical aspects to be more opportunistic throughout the game.
KEEP YOUR STRAIGHT DRIVES TIGHT
- Keep your opponent at bay by keeping your drives tight at varying height.
QUICK MOVEMENTS TO THE ‘T’
- One of the most important plays in squash. The most important move to controlling the game.
BEND YOUR KNEES
- Keep yourself balance at all times and bring power to the feet to be faster, more nimble and makes easier to follow the ball.
VOLLEY WHENEVER POSSIBLE
- Move yourself closer to the wall for court dominance. Hit the ball early to keep your opponent moving.
MAKE USE OF THE CORNERS
- Note the opponent’s position and retain control of the game by using the corners with a boast whenever necessary.
Plan your tactics through observation. To come up with game strategies while playing is a skill to be developed. Muscle memory is developed while playing. Adapting to the game and making adjustments is an ability to learn as you see more opponents.
VISUALIZE THE TACTICS
- Review the different shots in your head. Visualise the different shots you can utilize to beat your opponent.
OBSERVE THE OPPONENT
- Understanding the game your opponent likes to play is a skill to develop in squash. This includes understanding the strengths and weaknesses of the opponent while paying close attention to their positioning to the ball to predict movements and anticipate shots in the moment.
ANTICIPATE OPPONENT’S MOVES
- Predicting the outcome of the game is not an easy task. Part of understanding the flow of the game is to understand the shots your opponent likes to hit and taking those shots away from them.
SET YOUR OWN GOALS
- The obvious reason for playing the game is to succeed. Your primary goal should be to win, with secondary goals centered around how you will beat your opponent with the shots you have in your arsenal.