The battle cry heard daily on every court around the world is, "You need to be more consistent!" It's advice that certainly makes sense.
Still, many competitive players struggle to take their game to the next level whether it's in league or tournament play because they haven't figured out "how" to be more consistent.
More: 12 Tips to Win your Next Match
If you have an issue with consistency, try the following solutions to take your game to the next level. Work these kinks out of your game and you'll have more success in tournaments and league matches.
1. Train Almost Every Day
Practice in the manner in which you're expecting to perform. Design patterns and positions to expose your strengths and hide your weaknesses.
Try and play one match a day for a week. If it sounds too tough, try to play a full match three days straight.
2. Rehearse Shot Selection
The most common type of error is low percentage shot selection. Abiding by the laws of offense, neutral and defensive is a factor. Spotting tendencies as they occur is a critical factor in proper shot selection.
Fun fact: The "window" your ball travels above the net is crucial in the development of depth. This is called "air zones." Consistent depth is a key to consistent wins.
3. Simply Match the Speed of the Incoming Ball
Champions are comfortable matching the ball speed. Fighting the compulsion to always increase the ball speed is a sure fire way to be more consistent. When you don't have the feel in a match, shift to this plan.
This is also a super warm up routine. It shows the opponent you are stable versus crazy.
4. Hit the Right Side of the Ball
Beginner and intermediate players are happy simply hitting the ball. Top players understand that to hit short angles, topspin lobs and slice shots, it requires more detail.
The hidden gem here is that it trains you to watch the ball more carefully. You simply can't hit the outside edge of the ball traveling at you at high speeds, if you eyes are wondering.
Proper movement and positioning around the strike zone is called spacing. Using adjustment steps to align each stroke is an underlying factor in the ability to actually use good form. A common cause of short ball errors is spacing.
6. Proper Form
Forms includes grips, backswings, follow-throughs, core balance and keeping her head still through the strike zone. Cleaning up flawed strokes involves "trimming the fat" versus adding more to the player's stroke.