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Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Hitting a Wall...Figuratively

When a wall blocks your progress, don't bang your head on it...

Everyone I know has reached a stage in their pickleball life where progress has stopped. Those who are not satisfied with that stage find ways to break down the wall that blocks them. Sarah Ansbury talks about her fight to improve and discusses ways that we can do it too. Her article Hitting a Wall…Is Your Game Stuck? is excerpted below and can bee read in full at the link.

Hitting a Wall…Is Your Game Stuck?

I love pickleball. I am crazy about this sport, as most of you are. One of the biggest things I love about pickleball is how much I can still learn and grow. However, at times I feel like I hit a wall…I feel stuck. Does this ever happen to you?...

Hitting a Wall…Feeling Stuck

However, my schedule and sometimes the resources available to me at a location leave me feeling a little stuck. When I was in the northwest, I had a ton of players that I could count on regularly to challenge me. On the road, this is often not the case. Also, practice and working on my game just hasn’t been a priority. I could play…but not feel challenged enough to excel.

I suspect a lot of people hit this wall in their game…they don’t feel like they are improving anymore. When this happens, we often get bored. I caught myself recently just going through the motions of playing. For me, that is not what I want out of my game.

Making Changes When You Hit a Wall

To continue to improve, I need to focus more on my own game. This has led us to ease up a bit.  We decided we wanted to be in one place for a while so I could get back into a routine, focusing on what I wanted rather than teaching all the time. I found some new practice partners that I not only enjoy playing with but enable me to find ways to be challenged.  I have changed my workouts so I don’t get bored…and focus now on those areas that will most improve my game.

I have adjusted my tournament schedule so I can practice with some of my friends that I know will be good for me. I have asked for help when I needed it.

If like me, you have hit a wall I think you need to decide what the wall is to you and what you need to do to break through it and be better. When you know what you need to continue growing, find a way to make it happen. Should you take some lessons? Is it drilling more? Do you need to focus on your fitness? Once you know, ask yourself if you are willing to make it happen?

We all lead such busy lives and we don’t always put ourselves first. Rather than going out earlier to drill, maybe you decide you need to run some errands or take care of something for a family member. I want to encourage you to put yourself first, even if that requires some change or sacrifices.

I can’t find anyone that wants to drill or play pickleball in Texas in the middle of the day. I have had to set my alarm and give up some sleep-time so that I get to the courts early. Much earlier than frankly, I want to! But I always feel better afterward. Same goes for my workouts. I may not always feel like doing it, but I know the rewards are worth it.

If you feel like you have hit a wall, I hope you will think about putting yourself first. Identify the issues, and then decide if you are willing to make the commitment to make the changes necessary to battle through.

One issue that Sarah discussed was her inability to find drilling partners at her preferred time. The reality for many people is that it is hard to find people willing to drill at all. Over the next few posts, we will cover some drills that can be done alone by using a backboard.

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