ITAs/Importance of the off-season
When some people think of off-season the first thing that comes to mind is lying around watching TV and constantly eating. When in all actuality the off-season is a vital part of improving your game. Coach is giving us this week off and then the off-season training begins. Some schools won’t participate in training and others will do something light, but we will take the off-season very seriously so we can get better as players and become a close unit as a team.
The ITAs at St. Louis were a good visual on where we rack up with the players in the region. Although we saw many positives, we just weren’t able to pull out the match wins where we should have. In the first round of doubles Daniel and I had many chances to win (up 40-love, 40-15) and couldn’t close those games out in our 8-6 loss. That doubles team that beat us went on to win two more rounds. It was evident we hadn’t had any match play before ITAs. We were very inconsistent with returns, and shot selection. Although injuring my hip flexor in the second doubles match I played my singles matches and in the first one I was being content with just hitting the ball back into play. I did not trust my shots and was not going for my shots. The times in which I went for my shots there was a vast improvement and I was winning the points. My point playing was very inconsistent. I was missing too many easy balls.
Seeing where we rank also helps us see how important this off-season will be in preparation for the spring season. Most schools are active in the fall with matches before and after the ITAs and the only action we have in the fall is practice leading up to the ITAs.
Some of us got dinged up over the weekend, and this week off is very important for our bodies to prepare ourselves for the rigorous training we will undergo to really improve our game. Coach is currently devising a plan for us in the fall. It will consist of match play, conditioning, and weights. The match play aspect is to keep us in match play form; being able to work points and finish out games are keys to improving at tennis. We will be in the weight room to become stronger, which always can help; it also will make us faster on the court. Conditioning also keeps us in shape, helps endurance during matches, and also makes us faster. The insanity workout we did last fall will be interweaved in this falls workouts as well, along with that the new insanity asylum program will also be used. Recently crossfit training has become very popular and there are even crossfit games that are shown on ESPN and those workouts may also be part of our training.
Coach is going to keep the off-season schedule a little different from day to day and week to week. It is very important to keep the workouts fresh so we can stay motivated and not get bored from the same repetitive activity.
We may have struggled at ITAs, but Wabash Always Fights; therefore, we will put more effort into this off-season so we can come back in the spring and reach and exceed the goals we set earlier this year.