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How Sociology Can Help Your Tennis Game

September 30, 2017

 

September 30, 2017

My favorite books to read often relate to human behavior and interactions with our environment.  Books like “Social Animal,”  “Your Are Now Less Dumb” and “Bounce” all have great components to how we think and react to situations.  I recently read a blog by James Clear that depicts some great info on some behaviors we often do that can keep us from improving our mental state and outlook in situations.  I found some similarities in tennis that I would like to share.  I hope they are useful for you.  Enjoy! 

 

Survivorship Bias

This is one of the most common means of bias we see as recreational players trying to improve our tennis game.  We see a professional player or instructor give advice about training and never think about how many other people that did that same training but fail.  I often warn players that are using some sort of diet or exercise regimen they got from a high level player that the player might have gotten to that level despite their training, not because of it. 

Although this can be inspiring to think there is a magic bullet out there that can get you to the next level, consider thinking of being more critical with your praise towards someone’s methods of accomplishments.  Experiment and see what works for you.  Consider finding patterns in training that multiple players share to ensure you are using the right methods for your own improvements.

 

Loss Aversion

This way of thinking is probably the biggest obstacle to improving ones tennis game.  Loss Aversion in tennis relates to avoiding things in practice that you’re uncomfortable with.  This happens because we are much more comfortable with the feeling of gaining something rather than losing something.  For example, research has shown that someone who gets $10 does not feel as much of a high from gaining t