Thinking of Playing in a Pickleball Tournament? Take This Piece Of Advice to Heart

Thinking of Playing in a Pickleball Tournament? Take This Piece Of Advice to Heart

Have tournament aspirations, or are already playing in pickleball tournaments? If you have a safe spot to hit to, you have zero chance of becoming the best, and are slowly losing the war.

Let me explain.

Ben Johns is the best male player, and Anna Leigh Waters is the best female in the game, not simply because they have fast hands - everyone at that level has speedy hands.

They’re #1 because you can’t bail to either side and feel safe.

  • Dink to Ben’s forehand, he can attack you out of the air and off the bounce.
  • Dink to his backhand, he’ll attack out of the air and hit his patented roll power dink that’ll make you look silly as you fall over, trying to cover behind you.
  • If you get tricky and hold cross court, he’ll roll it up the center and make you look equally ridiculous.

Same for ALW, except she just blatantly comes at opponents with raw juice:

  • Dink to her forehand, you get attacked.
  • Dink to her backhand, you get attacked, but once in a while, she’ll hit her nasty heavy roll two-hander that also breaks ankles.

The common theme here will be the determining factor as you attempt to move up the ranks: You must be an offensive threat from everywhere!

At 9-9-2, your opponents can call a timeout and remind one another that they’ll be fine if they can just make the ball bounce to (X) spot. At that point, you’ve already lost the match.

At the pro level and the high tourney amateur level, no longer are the days where hitting 10 dinks will get you a pop-up. Conversely, now 6 dinks gets you attacked, especially in the women’s game.

Read Next: What It’s Like Being a Pro Pickleball-Playing Mom

Pros, you just got paid a huge bag, which means there’s even more “pressure” to perform and differentiate yourself. When it’s time to cash-in again in the future, will you have positioned yourself at or near the top of the list?

Become a threat on both sides, out of air AND off the bounce. If you don’t, you’ll remain a normal, good player who gets run over by the fearless, aggressive TOP players.

Dayne Gingrich is a Mental Performance Coach. Follow him here.

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