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Psychological Problems?

Discussion in 'Techniques / Training' started by drkzxeraph, Jun 29, 2009.

  1. drkzxeraph

    drkzxeraph Regular Member

    Jun 24, 2009
    Likes Received:
    San Diego, CA
    I'm not sure if anyone has mentioned this kind of problem before, but...

    When talking about psychological problems while playing badminton, it usually leans toward a lack of confidence when playing against superior players, or a lack of motivation, etc.

    Some of my friends and I, though, are kind of the opposite. Whenever we play against someone we are familiar with, like someone on the team (I play high school badminton), or against someone that is below our level, we tend to get bored and play in a very mediocre fashion.

    Well, maybe getting bored isn't the right word. For me, if I want to play my best, I almost absolutely must have that rush of adrenaline/excitement when playing. Otherwise, I can't focus or concentrate, and will even completely miss the shuttle on many of my swings. Playing against someone that I'm familiar with or someone who is at a lower lever doesn't provide that same thrill, and I always wind up playing horribly against them. The latter part isn't too much of a problem, because if they really ARE at a lower level than myself, I can probably beat them regardless.

    The only problem is, whenever I challenge a teammate to rise up in rank, I always do much worse than normal, because of the problem outlined above. Does anybody have any idea of how to solve this? I'd really appreciate your help!
  2. gingerphil79

    gingerphil79 Regular Member

    Jul 18, 2007
    Likes Received:
    Sports massage therapist
    Northern Ireland, UK
    Ur thinking about the situation al wrong i believe. I get that rush even from jus hitting that bird, I love it. I tink u prob think that because its people u know, its goin to b easy so u ease off, dont try as hard and the prob is its very hard to break that during a match.

    U ave to have the same mentality for every match no matter who it is. When u play against better players, u r thinking certain stuff. Probably, must play my best game, must win, ave to push them around, take control etc. This means, ur trying hard, on ur tip toes etc and going for everything.

    Ur prob thinking wit people u know or worse players, this will be easy, i know there game, so u take ur foot off and prob dont play as hard as u shud.

    Even players u could beat 100 times in a row can have a time when they will play reali wel and beat u and ul b tinking wot the heck happened, as the old phrase goes, every dog has its day.

    Treat every game the same, they could play reali wel or not, u dont know but you got to believe it will be a hard game but ur goin to do ur very best, look for the weaknesses and play on them to win the match

    Hope this helps mate, am no expert but ave had my fair share of matches, wins and losses, sum of which i shud not ave lost in a million years :(
    #2 gingerphil79, Jun 30, 2009
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2009
  3. thejym

    thejym Regular Member

    Oct 8, 2008
    Likes Received:
    San Diego
    Hello drkzxeraph. I think I can relate to what you mean.

    I think the source of your problem doesn't really depend on you playing a certain type of opponent. I suggest that you focus more on self-improvement with every game or every practice. If you play against good players, look at that as an opportunity to test what you've been practicing. If you are playing against someone who is not as good as you, actively think about your footwork and technique. Try to be a perfectionist.

    I think that when you play weaker opponents right now, you aren't all that enthused since you believe you can beat them easily. You probably lower your standards considerably, thinking you don't need to play seriously to win. I can understand that if the opponent is terribly weaker than you, you may think it is a waste of your time. In that case, you are better off not playing at all, or play seriously and focus on perfecting your every moment regardless of how the shuttle is returned back to your side. Don't develop bad habits playing against weaker opponents.

    With that said, I think that when you play against a better teammate in your attempt to rise up in rank, you expect yourself to play at your "normal" level. However, I bet you become frustrated when you find out that everything feels sluggish or it feels like you just can't get anything in. For some people, it may be easy to switch from a serious mode of play to "messing around", and vice versa, without any effect on their playing. Others might find that they spend too much time messing around or carelessly playing that when the time comes for them to play their very best, they can't do it. And then their frustration leads them to play worse and worse.

    If it is any help, pretend you are preparing to play against a really good player in the near future. When you are playing a weaker teammate, imagine that you only have a limited time to improve and that your only chance to practice is against this player. So, even if he can't hit the shuttle over or if he doesn't pose a threat, make sure you perfect your footwork in every action that you do (or at least actively think about your technique) and try to play some good shots back. There is no reason you should be missing the shuttle at all when you're playing, regardless of your opponent's skill (the only exception being that your opponent is hitting it so fast you cannot react or cannot reach). I have witnessed some of my teammates "swing empty" when they weren't playing seriously, which makes me question their grasp of the fundamentals of badminton. You shouldn't need to focus that hard in order to actually hit the shuttle. I would understand if you need to focus in order to hit it in your racket's sweetspot on every shot, but just hitting the shuttle on the racket should be a piece of cake. If you are unable to do so against a weak opponent, check to make sure your footwork is correct (if it isn't, go fix it!) and work on your hand-eye coordination.

    I do not know about your lighting conditions, or your other playing conditions for that matter, however I do know that most badminton players will NOT play their very best against a worthy opponent if they are not accustomed to playing hard/seriously. I think you and your friend may have played with weaker players to the point where you guys feel overly confident against them, yet under-confident against slightly better players. Confidence may be an important part of winning matches, but drop the confidence for some humbleness during practice and you should improve much more.

    Hope this helps!

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