Momentum

Momentum: It is really amazing how the results of a tennis match can swing from one side of the net to the other. How much is mental and how much is physical?

Wednesday night is one of my favorites, when I get to play doubles with a couple of my local tennis pros. Last night I was teamed with one and playing against another amateur, with a pro partner.

Our team was playing OK; but found ourselves with me serving at 0-5! I said to my partner, ‘It has been a long time since I have been bageled.’ He commented (strangely I thought), ‘Don’t tell me the score, it puts too much pressure on us and we won’t play as loose.’

Well, it went from bad to the worst it could be: I was serving 0-5, love 40.

We somehow came back to hold my serve; and then we won the next game, and the next game, and the next game, and the next game, and the next game, and the next game, and the next game, and the next game, and the next game, and the next game, and the next game! We won 7-5, 6-0.

Somewhere in that run, you could see our opponent’s shoulders droop as they felt the tide completely turn against them. They went for shots that weren’t there to be made and missed shots they had been making. It is really strange how momentum and the mind can impact the game.