Tag Archive for 'Squash Tips'

Match #3 2009 Australian Masters Squash Championships

Today’s result – a long, well fought 5-setter. I’ll save you the drama. The match was won fair and square by my competitor who was better than me on the day. I didn’t lose, he earned the victory and I learned priceless lessons.

As I keep saying, we’re reasons or we’re results. This match and competition was a GREAT RESULT – it ‘ranks’ me as #12 in Australia, which puts me way ahead of my development schedule and confirms I am training properly as I ascend through the rankings.

Some people (non-champions) think RESULTS means winning, but that’s often not the case. It quite often is about IMPROVING so that you can eventually ‘win’. In my case it’s not even about winning because as I’ve mentioned before, I am not aiming to win the World Championship, but to get into the top “16” in the world. When I get to that point, I will have reached what I consider to be my equitable and optimal ‘RESULT’. In case you didn’t read the blog posts about this – my opportunity costs are much too high to devote the time and effort to trying to beat people who do this for a living and have a 30 to 40 years head start.

Plus – it’s still just a black ball in a white room that you have to hit before it bounces twice…

Anyway, amongst the many lessons (there are more than I list below) I learned, I’d like to share the following with you as my gift for supporting and following me on my journey.

Lesson #1: Continue reading ‘Match #3 2009 Australian Masters Squash Championships’

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How To Ask For Feedback That Helps You

I teach what I call the 1 percent improvement doctrine, which basically states that you want to improve 1 percent at time, every day instead of trying to go for the ‘big kill’ and improve ‘all at once’. That being said, having a MasterMind Group helps a lot, but that requires a little more commitment and discipline.

The Fastest Way To Get Better Results

The fastest way to get better results is to ask someone who is better than you. My ‘formula’ is to do what I did this week when I played a squash pro…

“What 3 things should I focus on to improve my game so that the next time I take a lesson with you, I can already have improved?”

That narrows it down and synthesises what I call my Next Best Steps. It also makes it easy for him to summarise the 3 easiest things that would make the biggest difference. By the way – if you have more than this, it becomes confusing and self-defeating.

So there you have it – another simple and easy strategy to put into practice, the next time you practice deliberately!

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What Is The Best Squash Site Or Blog?

I am looking for the best sites on Squash – if you come across any, please send them to me by posting a comment on this blog. I want to get the BEST information from coaches, trainers, players, tips, techniques including rules and refereeing, historical facts, training camps…

If you happen to come across OTHER sports sites on ELITE training techniques, Mindset and Mental Preparation and any other related topics, please let me know. I am searching for the absolute best to bring it to you here as I absorb it and ‘Exponentialise’ it with an Exponential Perspective.

If you’re keen to acquire an Exponential Mindset to improve your sports performance, click on the hyperlink and start your journey to boundless opportunity thinking that leverages the Law Of Attraction to make you the very best athlete possible.

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The Vortex Of Mediocrity Is Stronger Than Gravity

Beware The Vortex Of Mediocrity -it’s stronger than gravity and will pull you down into its depths of amateur play every chance it gets. With no disrespect to the guys I was playing today… We sucked. For no good reason, we just totally and absolutely SUCKED. We were hitting brilliant and ‘B Grade’ shots within the same rally. Totally and utterly INconsistent.

Champions Lift Their Game And Their Opponent’s Game

I have the honor and privilege of playing a world-class player and former World Champion who lifts my game every time we play – EVEN WHEN HE’S INJURED – more on that in another post.

Right now, I just want to rant about how terrible I played yesterday. I know you know how it feels. You show up on the day to have a good match and you just can’t get it right. Yesterday for me was frustrating BECAUSE it wasn’t just me – it was ALL OF US.

Note: We play multiple players on ONE court – rotate one player in and play only 3/4 of the court while the other players wait in one corner that is off-bounds (called ‘out’)…

NONE of us played well – it was literally like a Vortex that wouldn’t let go! We would tin, hit it out, get strokes… The thing was NONE of us had the strength to pull out of the Vortex Of Mediocrity.

That is the lesson and my frustration. I thought by now I could do it. I can do it for myself when I compete – but with others on the court, the PULL of the Vortex is MAGNIFIED.

That’s why when we play with my Champion partner and he lifts us all – THAT is MASTERY of the sport… Being able to dictate and eradicate the Vortex Of Mediocrity ‘almost instantly’.

That is my next plateau to aim for.

As you may know from Anthony Robbins‘ Peak Performance strategies – FRUSTRATION precedes… A Breakthrough.

Thanks for listening – it makes me feel better to share this with you. It really does. It helps me consolidate and integrate my learnings in a way that is documented within a timeline so that I can come back and review progress and development.

PLUS you give me comments and encouragement from time to time that really inspires and motivates me!

Thanks and I’ll ‘talk to you’ soon.

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A Great Squash Site To Visit

This is one of my favourite sites – I have used the Squash Tips on an on-going basis – they are priceless for all squash addicts. Enjoy!

If you come across great sites like this – let me know and I’ll make sure I let everyone know about it!

T  ogether

E  veryone

A  chieves

M  ore!

I was fortunate to get lessons from one of the Khans while I visited Boston a few times – they are truly LEGENDS OF THE SPORT!

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Mastery Is All About Self Awareness

I recently played with a squash Champion who recaptured his self-awareness his name is Dr Malcolm Simons. He was a squash legend in his day, I posted his results in this blog post on MasterMind Groups. Anyway… getting to the point – I was on the court with him and we both got a priceless lesson/experience out of it. He got back in touch with his self awareness on the court and I saw first-hand how a pro can not only take the pace OFF the ball, but to create his own pace REGARDLESS of how the ball comes off the front wall.

I sliced, I drove, I floated and I lobbed the ball – each and every time Malcolm created his own pace to hit his cross court nick drop shot – MASTERFUL.

Now that I have EXPERIENCED it first-hand I can now start the process of learning to mimic it to get the same devastating effect on the ball.

Champions like to help Champions get better…

Fun stuff!

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The Law Of Attraction

Today’s post is about the Law Of Attraction. As you know, I am training for the World Masters Squash Championships coming up in October and one of the things I need to do is play different players more often to get better ‘court sense’ and adaptability to different styles of play and players. Just when I thought I would have to join a squash club (I have a court in my building)…

I popped into my racquet shop to pick up my new batch of racquets (more on this strategy later), and guess what? I bumped into a former squash buddy who had stopped playing due to a soccer injury and he’s back playing squash. How cool is that?!?!

Then Bob, the owner of the racquet shop said he came across someone who just moved to Sydney from overseas and is looking for a partner!

I am playing him tonight for the first time – I’ll let you know how it goes.

The moral of today’s story is that when you ‘put it out there’, the Universe will respond. That’s something non-champions have trouble with – they never put themselves out there so this rarely happens for them.

How do you ‘put it out there’?

GREAT QUESTION.

DECIDE, COMMIT and RESOLVE to lift your game. DO whatever it takes to make it happen and BELIEVE that when you are ready, the solution will appear. You know the adage “When the student is ready, the master will appear.”

This is the same thing – expect it works for ANYTHING you need – ANYTHING. Including a few new squash partners to have a hit with!

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Concentration Of Focus

Most people who are not very good at a sport simply have not invested the necessary time to MASTER the basics. I spent an hour on the court tonight hitting ONLY deep backhand lobs. That was the ONLY stroke/drill that I did. I must have hit the ball +/- 1,000 times.

“Perfect Practice Makes Perfect”

Each stroke is another opportunity to focus on foot position, movement to and from the shot, racquet swing (arc) versus speed and impact points, placement of the ball (in front or in back of me), distance from the side wall and back wall…

After 1,000 attempts, you have to be ‘better’, more aware and in tune with what works and what doesn’t.

I noticed 3 things that I now know I can make into ‘automatic’ and ‘second nature’ reflexes…

  1. When I am out of position, aim for the top 1/3 of the front wall. Easier said than done BECAUSE you’re OUT of position!
  2. When in a good position, slice the ball so it creates a vortex to spin INTO the wall. Easier to do BECAUSE you’re IN position!
  3. When in the ‘strike zone’, AIM for the target in the back corner with a reverse spin that does not bounce off the back wall. (I’ll explain targets soon… Yes TARGETS in SQUASH – makes drills a lot more FUN!)

Why bother sharing this with you?

  • First, it helps me focus on what I am learning. The MORE you TEACH, the MORE you LEARN.
  • I am human just like you can I got ‘bored’ at around 40 minutes. I realised I needed to have a ‘target’ to aim for or a variation to create less monotony. I will resolve this for the next session.
  • By hearing my story, you can share my experience and figure what you should be doing or what you ARE doing that is equivalent and valuable. We’re in this quest together each in our own way!

T  ogether

E  veryone

A  chieves

M  ore

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Try Punching Above Your Weight

There’s an expression in boxing that says when you reach beyond your comfort zone, you’re “punching above your weight” which means you pack a punch like someone who’s a lot heavier than you are. Today, I went toe-to-toe with some of my squash partners and the last man standing (with me) stood his ground.

We played for 2 hours, there were 3 of us, then 4.

When we were 4, we played doubles on a singles court which is a great way to improve your reflexes, reaction time and quick movement as well as court sense – PLUS deal with all the visual and physical distractions of the 4 players on the court AT THE SAME TIME. (More on that in a future post…)

The last man standing with me only played the last hour, but still.

I was running him around and he hit the wall at about the same time I did, but did NOT blink.

Continue reading ‘Try Punching Above Your Weight’

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Deliberate Practice

If you’re serious about improving at your sport (mine’s squash) you need to start practicing and training deliberately. Deliberate practice is a concept that you’ll hear a lot more about in the next few weeks and months. Anders Ericsson, an expert in Expertise and Expert Performance is the world’s penultimate specialist in this field of research. You can find the reference to this book on my Linked In Profile, look at Marc Dussault’s Reading List on my profile page – it’s on the right-hand side of the page, below the fold, which means you’ll need to scroll down to see it.

Let’s get back to deliberate practice… Simply put, it means having a SPECIFIC outcome and focus WHILE you practice. Having a deliberate intent and focus is essential for on-going improvement that I call the 1 percent improvement doctrine.

For today, just make a list of what you’re focusing on.

For your information, right now I am focusing on NOT making any unforced errors. That means I only go for the kill shot winner WHEN it is in my strike zone and I can feel I have a 90+% chance of hitting the perfect winner. If the ball is not in my ‘kill zone’, I place it strategically to keep my opponent running, off balance and force HIM to make the ERROR.

That is my deliberate practice outcome.

HOW I am doing that right now is explained in my previous post.

You can now start to see how a champion goes about practicing and training.

Share with me your lessons, victories and defeats by posting comments on this blog. I am interested even if it’s another sport!

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