Many tennis players are “Safe Players” , what is meant by this is that they play well within themselves and do not go out of their comfort zone. This can be either in their shot selection, or the fact they are too afraid of the consequences an unexpected loss might have on their ego.
Why Should You Want To Lose?
Any player that wants to improve their game needs to make changes of some sort or the other, whether this is technical, tactical, physical or mental.
If you continue to play within yourself, practicing the same way, then you will remain the same player. This is the common norm amongst many amateur players.
You may not be aware if you are one of these particular players, that improvement is one of the main motivators in the game.
The conundrum is that many players do not know how to improve, and it is now that they should be approaching a tennis coach for help.
Recognise Your Need For Improvement
If you are reasonably successful with your current game then it is natural that your brain will resist any sort of change, even for the better.
Even professionals fall into this trap, for example Gael Monfils could be a consistent top 5 player only is he could learn to play more aggressively. He has won many matches with his defensive style of play, and so far has not been able to change this at the pro level, which is why he has remained an average player.
Can Losing Really Help?
In the case of Gael Monfils he needs to change to a more aggressive game to augment his current skills. He may need to be willing to lose some matches that he would probably normally win with his defensive game. Very few players are prepared to do this, lose in the short term to develop.
Changing habits is extremely hard, some players are able to do this once but not able to repeat it again in the next match, they fall back into their comfort zone. It is not easy to overcome the fear of losing, and to recognise what you really need to do to progress in the long run.
Are You Willing To Lose, In Order To Get Better?
As with a great deal of things in life, a little risk is needed to be taken in order to progress and get better.
This means leaving your comfort zone, it can be a little scary but it is also the place that will get you the biggest rewards in the end. This is not to say lose for losing sake, it means to be prepared to lose when you are experimenting on improving your game.