Many say that tennis is a “mind game”, based on consistent focus, concentration, and confidence. Many of the skills necessary for tennis are challenging, especially for people with ADD/ADHD. However, tennis is great for people with ADD/ADHD since it can improve these skills over time, and can be like “physical therapy” for the brain.
Here are 7 tennis tips that can help the Adult with ADD/ADHD:
1. Improve your focus by repeating a mantra or phrase such as “bounce-hit, bounce-hit” as the ball comes over the net. This can help your focus and develop a rhythm.
2. When you notice your attention drifting, gently return back to your mantra.
3. Think of a motivating or favorite song. This can help you from “over-thinking”. Tennis is a subtle balance between focusing and letting go.
4. Practice letting go of critical thoughts, especially during the warm-up phase. Reassure yourself that “this is practice”.
5. Many people with ADD/ADHD have difficulty with timing. As soon as your opponent hits the ball, get your racket back. Allow yourself to run with your racket back, rather than standing in the ready position.
6. According to my life-long coach, tennis is similar to the martial arts in that the power comes from the momentum of the body, not from muscular strength. Thus, continuous motion, not jerky movements, is essential.
7. Remember—This is a game…Part of the point is to have fun. Find the balance between improving your game and having fun.