After a poor performance at a tournament, many players go back to the local club and justify their play by saying, “Well, it was a learnin’ experience.” Often, when questioned what they learned, these players use very general terms like – my backhand needs work.
In order to truly turn a bad tournament into a good thing, you must learn to be specific. I know that it is painful, but do the following 4 things:
Within 24 hours of the tournament, sit down and write out the specifics. Write out exactly what went wrong an take time to detail each point. This should take about 2-3 hours to complete.
Within 48 hours of the tournament, sit down and watch the video of your performance. Be willing to really review and review until you have seen every detail. Be willing to watch the good and bad matches. This should take about 5-10 hours to complete.
Within 1 week, ask the advice from your friends and competitors to get their point of view. Tell them that you want the honest truth and that you really want to use it as a learning experience. Take notes while they are talking. Then compare their notes with your previous notes.
Finally evaluate and re-evaluate to see if you really have made the necessary changes to improve.
Your bad tournament really CAN be turned into a learning experience, IF you are willing to dig deep to find the specific problems and are willing to work diligently to fix those problems!
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