Warm-up – Before every match, a player has to do warm-up exercises to get his body moving and his muscles all loosened. A player can first start with a slow jog followed by light skipping or simple exercises such as high knees, back kicks and lunges. This will help to loosen the muscles and help the player move well on the court. This will also prevent injuries as the player’s muscles would not have to suddenly start vigorous activity, resulting in a muscles pull.
Nutrition and Hydration – Before every match, a player should not eat oily and salty food such as fries. One should eat food like pasta which has little oil and provides a lot of energy. Food that contains carbohydrates are essential to provide the energy for the player to last through the match. Moreover, a player should also drink lots of water before the match so as to prevent cramps later on.
Analyze opponent – Before every match, a player should analyze his or her opponent. One should look at his or her opponent’s weaknesses and try to find ways to beat them. For example, if your opponent likes to hit from the baseline and does not like to come up to the net. You should bring your opponent up to the net by hitting a drop shot or a shot low slice to force him to come up. This will put him in his uncomfortable zone and will force him not to play his normal game. Hence, analyzing your opponent is essential before a match as during a match, it may be too late to find your opponent’s weaknesses and use them to help you win the match.
Physical strength – During the match, a player should be firstly physically fit and should be quick on the court. It is very important for a player to be able to endure through long matches and have the stamina to continue playing. Moreover, agility and speed is important as well. A player should cover the court well and get to ball fast to get into position to hit it.
Psychological strength – Many have the misconception that in order to win a match, a player should hit hard and hit winners to win. However, this is not true. The game of tennis is actually won in the mind. During a match, a player has to focus and concentrate on his own game and to be quick to see the opponent’s changes. A player should watch his opponent during a match and see if he or she changes his or her game style. For example, if the opponent starts the match hitting from the baseline and then changes his game style by moving up to the net, one should observe this change and think of ways to counter this change like maybe lobbing the opponent. Moreover, one should also change the game style if a certain game style is not working for him during the match. The player should be constantly thinking of how to out-wit the opponent and not to out-play the opponent. Choosing the right shot at the right time is also essential. This will prevent long rallies and can save energy at the same time.