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How To Focus Our Attention And What To Look For

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Stavros View Drop Down
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    Posted: 11/25/2019 at 3:16am
I  have recently red an amazing book. 

The Inner Game of Tennis: The Classic Guide to the Mental Side of Peak Performance  by Timothy Gallwey.


An important thing mentioned, is to focus on the ball .
You achieve two things. 
1. Your mind doesn't travel elsewere.
2. You predict where the ball lands.


A friend of mine focuses on the opponent's racket, in order to predict where the ball goes. 

Do you thing that focusing on opponent's racket is a good idea ?



Edited by Stavros - 11/25/2019 at 7:04am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BRS Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/25/2019 at 4:39am
Only during the serve.  All other times I would say follow the ball.  It will find the opponent's bat or the point will be over.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Kolev Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/25/2019 at 6:43am
Exactly on the subject. I wish I saw this video long time ago or had the advice.
I feel my anticipation goes on a different level if I don't forget to pay attention.....
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Baal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/26/2019 at 2:09am
that one (Inner Game...)  is a classic.

Now try Winning Ugly by Brad Gilbert. It lacks the zen aspect but it still has some great ideas.  Jimmy Butler recommended it to me years sgo.


Edited by Baal - 11/26/2019 at 2:11am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote blahness Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/26/2019 at 3:10am
I struggle with focus sometimes....what good ways are there to train it up?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote BRS Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/26/2019 at 3:14am
Originally posted by Kolev Kolev wrote:

Exactly on the subject. I wish I saw this video long time ago or had the advice.
I feel my anticipation goes on a different level if I don't forget to pay attention.....

The flaw in this video, imo, is that play is not multiball.  In multiball of course you have to watch the feeder's bat because the next ball is always coming from there and not from where you hit it to.  So the earlier you move your attention the more ready you are for the next ball.  But in play the loss of perception from transferring attention twice in a second or less from ball to opponent and back to ball, is too high.  Just my 2¢, YMMV.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Stavros Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/26/2019 at 4:51am
Originally posted by Baal Baal wrote:

that one (Inner Game...)  is a classic.

Now try Winning Ugly by Brad Gilbert. It lacks the zen aspect but it still has some great ideas.  Jimmy Butler recommended it to me years sgo.

Is it useful for Table Tennis ?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Ttunderthesun21 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/26/2019 at 7:36am
Originally posted by Baal Baal wrote:

that one (Inner Game...)  is a classic.

Now try Winning Ugly by Brad Gilbert. It lacks the zen aspect but it still has some great ideas.  Jimmy Butler recommended it to me years sgo.

O.O Winning Ugly is an excellent book, really helped me in my tennis playing days, and it translates pretty well to my ping pong playing too.  
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Stavros Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/26/2019 at 8:12am
Originally posted by Ttunderthesun21 Ttunderthesun21 wrote:

Originally posted by Baal Baal wrote:

that one (Inner Game...)  is a classic.

Now try Winning Ugly by Brad Gilbert. It lacks the zen aspect but it still has some great ideas.  Jimmy Butler recommended it to me years sgo.

O.O Winning Ugly is an excellent book, really helped me in my tennis playing days, and it translates pretty well to my ping pong playing too.  

OK, I've just bought it! 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Ttunderthesun21 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/26/2019 at 8:19am
Originally posted by Stavros Stavros wrote:

Originally posted by Ttunderthesun21 Ttunderthesun21 wrote:

Originally posted by Baal Baal wrote:

that one (Inner Game...)  is a classic.

Now try Winning Ugly by Brad Gilbert. It lacks the zen aspect but it still has some great ideas.  Jimmy Butler recommended it to me years sgo.

O.O Winning Ugly is an excellent book, really helped me in my tennis playing days, and it translates pretty well to my ping pong playing too.  

OK, I've just bought it! 

Nice!  Let us know what you think about it after you're done.  
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Stavros Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/26/2019 at 3:16pm
After playing today I realized that focusing on the ball is much better than focusing on opponent's racket.  This way you are also more concentraded. As Timothy Gallwey says, focus on the ball,  your body knows how to send the ball wherever you want. DON'T OVERTHINK! As BRS wrote above, If you receive serve, then only you should focus on opponent's racket. Especially  when the ball touches his racket. 

That works for me, especially on critical moments of the match. 

What's your opinion? 


Edited by Stavros - 11/26/2019 at 3:20pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Baal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/26/2019 at 7:10pm
A coach once suggested to me a training technique of bringing the backswing at the same speed that the ball is coming.  Opponent hits ball faster, your back swing is faster, ball comes slower, backswing is slower.

It is a similar technique to just tracking the ball that adds a motor component to the sensory tracking.

It is quite an amazing exercise.  About ten minutes of that and the ball just seems huge.

Then try it in drills where you have to move quite a bit side to side.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Simon_plays Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11/27/2019 at 1:32am
Originally posted by BRS BRS wrote:

Originally posted by Kolev Kolev wrote:

Exactly on the subject. I wish I saw this video long time ago or had the advice.
I feel my anticipation goes on a different level if I don't forget to pay attention.....

The flaw in this video, imo, is that play is not multiball.  In multiball of course you have to watch the feeder's bat because the next ball is always coming from there and not from where you hit it to.  So the earlier you move your attention the more ready you are for the next ball.  But in play the loss of perception from transferring attention twice in a second or less from ball to opponent and back to ball, is too high.  Just my 2¢, YMMV.

Very interesting point. After watching that video I was completely convinced but now after having thought about the fact that the TL used multiball to make his point I am not so sure anymore. 

The important thing might not be the ball watching but wether one does it from a frozen position or recovers bat and body. The better the shot the bigger the temptation to stop making the effort to recover. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Stavros Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 12/02/2019 at 3:11am
This weekend I played some official matches for the Greek championship. During the critical moments it was very useful to focus on the ball . When bad thoughts appeared , I focused on the ball and let my body plays the table tennis it knows.  
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