About David’s Tennis Experience
I started playing tournaments when I was 10 years old. I became a nationally ranked player (see my complete resume) as a junior, played on the USC tennis team (we were National Champions during the 3 years I lettered Varsity), played on the Junior Davis Cup team, and when I was 17 years old I represented the U.S. at Junior Wimbledon where I lost in the Semi-Finals to a Russian player.
However, as good as I was, I used to yell and scream (at times) on the tennis court. I couldn’t ever seem to win matches against players that were higher ranked. I never felt that in important matches I played well enough to win. I got really frustrated and angry with myself and I didn’t know how to stop.
I had been teaching tennis at the Jack Kramer Tennis club as an assistant under Robert Lansdorp for a few years when one day (I was in my 30’s), I was reading the LA Magazine about an instructor who was teaching the Inner Game and wrote The Inner Game of Tennis. His name was Tim Gallwey. I knew that I had to have a lesson from him and I was determined to go to the ends of the earth to find him. It turned out that he was right there in Los Angeles. To make a long story short, I took a lesson from him and he completely changed my life as a player and as a teacher.
I have been studying the mental game for over 25 years now, trying to find how to achieve the state of mind that will maximize my tennis game. You have heard of the expression “playing out of your mind”. Well, I wanted to know how to get there every time I played. I believe I have found how to do this. It is easy to talk about, but it takes work to get there. As I was trying to discover these “mental techniques” for myself, I had varying degrees of success. I knew that these ideas worked for me, but I didn’t know if they would work for anybody else. I have now worked with enough good athletes to know that anyone can do it and that it works.
In my new book, Playing Zen-Sational Tennis, I have made it as simple as possible for you to experience what you need to do to play “out of your mind” as well as to speed up your learning. I would suggest that you read Tim Gallwey’s book The Inner Game of Tennis so that you will understand the whole concept. It has been my tennis bible for many years.
There will be many concepts that I will not go into in my books as Tim can and does express these concepts far better that I ever could.
My books will give you the practical information and the exercises so that you can play the mental game. I know it works and I also know it may be hard without some personal guidance. My book will give you that guidance. And if you have any questions after reading my books you can contact me. If you would like to work with me personally on your mental game, please call or e-mail me.