Posts Tagged ‘smart tennis book’

Badri Narayanan Talks out about Sports Psychology

Sports psychology letter – unsolicited – from a Salt Lake City tennis pro to Dr. John F Murray, sports psychologist and author of the book “Smart Tennis: How to Play and Win the Mental Game.”

Dear John:

It was wonderful talking with you yesterday on sports psychology. As promised, here is my article.

“I am Badri Narayanan, a Tennis coach/PM in Daybreak, Utah. During coaching, while my prime focus was on stroke analysis, technique and footwork/fitness etc, I was very much intrigued by the importance of mental toughness/sports pyschology etc. Quite often when students ask me “players in the tour say you either have confidence or you don’t, attitude is intrinsic etc.” and sometimes they got depressed because they thought that mental toughness was something intrinsic and not built through constant mental work.

I was looking for something concrete that would help my students treat mental toughness/skills as something as vital as technique and I ran into smart tennis by john murray. I was fascinated by how well written and clean it was in explaining the mental aspects of the game. I read through it cover to cover did the check lists for each mental skill. applied it in my club games, leagues etc and once I realized how much it had helped me on and off the tennis court, I decided that this is what I was looking for for my students.

If I could somehow translate the importance of working on mental skills to these students, not only it will help them become better tennis players but also champions in life. I made a conscious decision to incorporate it into my tennis sessions with the students. After my typical tennis sessions with the students, I gave them a check list of each mental skill like energy, attention control,confidence, concentration etc., and had them fill out where they were and honestly. This gave them a platform as to where their mental skills where and where they could be kinda like a goal for them to attain.

Every day we worked on each skill and at the end of the week we would revisit the mental checklist and see where they were. I would accompany these with videos of great tennis players to add to their enthusiasm. I have seen these students grow mentally in front of my own eyes and sometimes make me teary eyed with plenty of aha experiences.

This book is an absolute must for any student who wants to take his/her game to the highest level and reach their fullest potential in sports and life.

Thanks John for coming up with such an amazing book and it is bound to help millions to want to take their tennis to the highest level.

Badri Narayanan is a certified tennis coach in Salt Lake City , Utah. For private lessons and tennis sessions, zennis workshops and inner game tennis contact him at badri007@gmail .com or you can reach him at 435-764-0969.

Hope you enjoyed this little exploration into the world of sports psychology!

Dr. John F. Murray Interviewed in Writers and Authors

Writers and Authors – Tuesday, April 28, 2009 – Interview with John Murray – Please explain, what is sports psychology?

THAT IS AN EXTREMELY BROAD TERM THAT REFERS TO FIELDS INVOLVED IN THE SCIENCE AND PRACTICE OF UTILIZING PSYCHOLOGICAL KNOWLEDGE AND TECHNIQUES TO THE BETTERMENT OF SPORT, THE IMPROVEMENT OF ATHLETIC PERFORMANCE, THE WELL BEING OF THE INDIVIUDAL AND MANY MORE THINGS TOO! ONE WAY TO THINK OF IT IS THE FIELD OF PSYCHOLOGY APPLIED TO SPORT, BUT IT ALSO INVOLVES THE SPORTS SCIENCES.

You have travelled worldwide as a tennis professional.. Have you always had a passion for sport?

YES. I GREW UP IN SOUTH FLORIDA WHERE I COULD PLAY AND WATCH SPORTS YEAR-ROUND. AT AGE 9 DON SHULA CAME TO TOWN AND IT HAS NEVER BEEN THE SAME IN SOUTH FLORIDA J … TENNIS IS POPULAR ALL OVER THE WORLD, BUT FLORIDA IS A GREAT MECCA FOR THAT SPORT WHICH I TOOK UP IN MY YOUTH

What made you take up writing?

TRAINING AS A PSYCHOLOGIST FORCES YOU TO THINK AND WRITE CLEARLY AND WITH PRECISION. AT THE UNIVERISTY OF FLORIDA I MUST HAVE DONE 3-4 NEW ASSESSMENT REPORTS EACH WEEK ON THE PSYCHOLOGY CLINIC ROTATION FOR MANY YEARS. I SHARED MY KNOWELDGE IN MANY COLUMNS AND THEN WROTE SOME BOOKS. I ENJOY WRITING NOW AS IT IS A WINDOW INTO THE MIND AND A MEANS OF HELPING OTHERS GREATLY.

Tell us a bit about your book Smart tennis: How to Play and Win the Mental Game.

AS A TENNIS PRO, BUDDING CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGIST, AND BUDDING SPORTS PSYCHOLOGIST, I WANTED TO COMBINE THESE THREE DISCIPLINES TO HELP PEOPLE IMPROVE WITH THEIR STRONGEST WEAPON – THE MIND. I WAS AWARE OF THE WELL KNOWN “INNER GAME OF TENNISâ€? AND BRAD GILBERT’S “WINNING UGLY,â€? BOTH TERRIFIC BOOKS THAT HELPED MY TENNIS GAME AS WELL AS EARLIER COACHING, BUT THERE WAS NOTHING YET THAT REALLY PULLED FROM THE SCIENTIFIC ADVANCES IN SPORTS PSYCHOLOGY TO HELP THE TENNIS PLAYER. TIM GALWEY WAS A COLLEGE TENNIS COACH AND GILBERT WAS A TENNIS PLAYER, BUT NEITHER HAD THE SCIENTIFIC BACKGROUND IN BOTH FIELD OF PSYCHOLOGY THAT I HAD, SO I TRIED TO STAND ON THEIR SHOULDERS AND GO BEYOND THEM TOO IN GIVING PEOPLE AN EASY SET OF SOLID PRINCIPLES THAT WERE FOUNDED ON RESEARCH RATHER THAN ASSUMPTION, DATA RATHER THAN OPINON. IT IS STILL SELLING WELL IN ITS GENRE 10 YEARS LATER AND I SAW IT IN BEIJING, CHINA AND ADELAIDE, AUSTRALIA RECENTLY, AND HAS BEEN TRANSATED INTO SPANISH AND JAPANESE AS WELL. IT DID NOT HURT TO GET THE TOP TENNIS PLAYER IN THE WORLD AT THE TIME, LINDSAY DAVENPORT, TO ENDORSE THE BOOK ON THE COVER.

Your commentary is found almost daily in thousands of newspapers, magazines, and trade journals. Did you find it easier to write your book or to write articles for publications? Why?

WRITING ARTICLES IS FAIRLY EASY BECAUSE THE TOPIC IS USUALLY MORE CONFINED AND NARROW. WRITING A BOOK IS DESERT WARFARE. YOU NEED 6 MONTHS OF TOTAL FOCUS WITH AT LEAST 6 HOURS A DAY, AND A PATIENT ATTITUDE TO EDIT IT 20 TIMES IF NEEDED. SO WHILE WRITING A BOOK IS HARDER, IT IS ALSO FAR MORE REWARDING BECAUSE IT EVENTAULLY MAKES IT ALL AROUND THE WORLD AND HELPS MANY MORE PEOPLE.

What projects do you have planned for the future?

MANY. I AM WORKING ON A BOOK ABOUT THE PSYCHOLOGY OF FOOTBALL AND HAVE WORKED ON PROJECTS ABOUT BUSINESS AND DIET/WEIGHT CONTROL. I HAVE A SERIES OF WEBSITE THAT I WILL BE UNLEASHING BEFORE TOO LONG. I HAVE PLANS TO WRITE A MORE GENERAL BOOK ON SPORTS PSYCHOLOGY TOO. IF I EVER GET THE TIME I WOULD LOVE TO WRITE A NOVEL, HOST A NATIONAL TV AND RADIO SHOW, AND KEEP BUILDING AWARENESS ABOUT THIS GREAT FIELD THAT IS REALLY A SCIENCE OF SUCCESS.

Where can people find out more about you and your book?

MY WEBSITE AT WWW.JOHNFMURRAY.COM IS THE STARTING POINT. THE BOOK IS IN MOST BARNES AND NOBLE STORES, AND BORDERS BOOK STORES, OR ON AMAZON.COM OR CAN BE SEEN ALSO AT WWW.SMARTTENNIS.COM

Anything else you’d like to add?

I ALSO LIKE TO COMMENT ON SOCIAL ISSUES IN SPORTS. I THINK THE MAJOR SPORTS TEAMS NEED TO UTILIZE SPORTS PSYCHOLOGSITS ON A DAILY BASIS TO HELP THEIR TEAMS IMPROVE, HELP THE INDIVIDUALS ON THE TEAM LEAD HEALTHIER LIVES, AND TO PREVENTIVELY HELP IN MANY AREAS THAT ARE DETRIMENTAL TO BOTH INDIVIDUALS AND SOCIETY (E.G., GUN VIOLENCE, DRUGS, POOR EXAMPLES FOR OUR CHILDREN).
Posted by Jo Linsdell- Founder and Organiser of PROMO DAY! at 10:40 AM
Labels: books, featured author, Interview, John Murray, sports

SMART TENNIS BOOK RECEIVES TOP RATING

Smart Tennis: How to Play and Win the Mental Game – Oct 4, 2005 – John F. Murray – ISBN 0787943800 – Reviewed by David Williams – Have you ever had a form slump on the tennis court? Did you wonder why you had seemingly forgotten how to hit the ball properly – apparently lost all that hard earned skill overnight?

Well, John Murray’s Smart Tennis may provide the answer. It’s likely that your sudden loss of form has more to do with your mind than your body. His book assists in determining your mental strengths and weaknesses and provides practical remedies for ailments like a loss of confidence, poor concentration, anger, nervousness and a general fear of losing. He also provides ways of harnessing appropriate amounts of energy, and improving performance by having well developed breathing techniques.

All sounding a bit hard? A bit too serious? Well, it’s not really. Smart Tennis presents simple descriptions of on-court and off-court problems, and practical tips that are equally relevant for the weekend player as the professional.

In saying that, the book is not a quick and breezy read. Keen tennis players are likely to find themselves constantly drifting off, thinking about the specifics of their tennis game and how the book applies to them. But that’s the idea isn’t it?

If you have spent countless hours trying to hone that backhand volley or a less than consistent second serve, perhaps it’s worthwhile considering that tennis is a game that is thought to be 75% mental. And if you think that your game could be improved by devoting a little more time to the mental aspects, then Smart Tennis is the book for you!

Dr. John F. Murray is a sports psychologist and clinical psychologist providing sports psychology and counseling services based in Palm Beach, Florida.

Rating: Highest – 4 Stars