Tom Brady vs. Time

“Tom vs. Time” is the title of an interesting series of vignettes produced and shown on FaceBook.  Each of the six segments is about 15 minutes long; and even though I am a big Patriots fan, I don’t think you need to be one to benefit from watching.

Improving – They show a lot of what the future Hall of Famer goes through to try to improve his body and technique off the field.  One specialist says, “He is not trying to get 5-10% better; he is trying to get just 1% better.”  Which says something to us senior tennis players looking to improve… it is the little increments we should look for.

Scouting – Brady is a self-admitted “film addict”; and will watch game film of his upcoming opponents for “hours and hours.”  He wants to know what the opposition is likely to do in a given situation.  I love to watch my next opponent play; and I think some of the better players do this instinctively.

Brain vs. Brawn – As a forty-year-old professional football player, Brady can’t count on out-running or out-muscling anyone.  One quote that stuck with me is: “Old age and treachery trump youth and enthusiasm.”  One way we can STILL improve out tennis game is by playing the right shot at the right time.

What do you think?

This Week: DeDe and I head north to the Meadows in Sarasota tomorrow for my fifth (and final!) senior tournament of the season.  Teamed again with Hank Irvine, we are seeded #2 in a tougher field.  For all the seeds, draws and completed matches so far, click HERE.

P.S. Playing in tennis tournaments is like family visiting you … you look forward to them; really enjoy them when they are here; and are happy when they are over (and you go back to your old routine)!

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3 thoughts on “Tom Brady vs. Time

  1. And like friends visiting, they are sorely missed when you can’t play those tournaments due to injuries. I miss seeing y’all.

    Patrick Swafford

    Patrick, yes, it is a great group of guys! Thanks. George

  2. Yeah, like Patrick I missed being there this year. Nothing to do with injury, just other commitments. Last year I had so much fun being totally immersed in tennis, tennis, tennis almost every day and all day that I kept singing “I’m in heaven, I’m in heaven…and my heart beats so that I can hardly speak…” I do totally enjoy the conversations and laughter with the guys but I have noticed something unique here in our local tennis community — although we have this major commonality (tennis) seldom do we socialize beyond the court. It’s likely my fault for not suggesting to my fellow yellow, fuzzy ball addicts that we go to lunch or for not proactively inviting some of my regular hitting partners and their spouses to my home for some socializing. In fact, for years I would host two major events each year at our home and lots of tennis folks and their spouses would come. So I know it’s possible with a little effort. The great part about the tournaments is that most of us are hanging around for hours surrounding our actual matches and the atmosphere lends itself to talk — tennis stuff and otherwise, getting to know you conversations, laughter and sometimes the initiation of longer term, long distance relationships. So I missed all the fun and tennis this year; my plan is to not let that happen again. Good luck in all your matches. At our age everyone who is still playing this great game is a winner — no matter the final score of the match. Keep ’em between the lines and ENJOY!

    Bernie, coincidentally, we were just talking aboput your not being here! See you next year. george

  3. 1% increases in your chance of winning – a few off the top of my head strategies from my own experience:
    1) Before draw made:
    a)finding out the brand of ball tournament is using and practicing with same brand
    for a few weeks before the tournament
    b) Practice only on the same type of court (har tru, hard, indoor hard; if grass, I think
    the footing of Har Tru is best practice with shortening strokes and practice
    moving in shots more, more wide slice serves on forehand side and more slice
    down the tee or flat wide to Ad court (If right handed, reverse if lefthanded)
    c) Have at least 3 racquets with variable string tension to use lower tension as the
    balls get more used or if getting wet. If you play best with tension at 54 with new
    balls, have 52 for 2nd set and 50 for wet balls; if 3rd set new balls, go back to 54
    strung racquet.
    d) Have sunglasses available for outdoor tournament in case of sun issues (and
    wear a hat and lots of sunscreen!)
    2) After draw is made:
    a)See the times scheduled and practice during those times in order to get same sun
    angle
    b) Check opponents records – if they are new to the age group, check record 5 years
    before.
    3) Once tournament starts:
    a) always try to watch next opponent(s) play
    b) Be protective of your energy, concentration – do not spend too much time
    watching other matches (especially if you are in the sun) – the heat saps you and
    the concentration used in watching can also be debilitating – find time to be
    alone, quiet, and out of the elements.
    c) Eat lighter than normal, keep hydrated, and stay with the foods you normally
    digest, assimilate well. There is no proper diet that fits everyone. Find yours.
    d) If you normally have 2 alcohol drinks a day, only have one. If normal is one or none, have none.
    e) Massage by Joanne (our delightful Princess of Quite Alot) or equivalent after a
    strenuous match can help you recover better for next day
    I could go on but will leave it with this: There is no point in having fear of failure effect you; no one cares about senior tennis except the few of us that play; all you want to leave a tournament with is knowing you gave your best effort and behaved well. Enjoy your opponents quality play and any good luck they have. Competing as hard as you can is what is fun. Learning from each tournament and your interaction with the other players is the opportunity. Training well your body, mind, and technique is your goal for the next tournament. We are so lucky to have the opportunity to compete and should be very grateful to the clubs, tennis people who make it possible.
    Congratulations George on your finals win today.

    Winder, if someone did ALL those, they would get more than just a 1% improvement/edge!! Thanks, george

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