In the table tennis world, giving players recognition is very important. I think it is great when tournaments have an award podium and make the awards ceremony very official. The Samson Dubina Table Tennis Academy will be promoting more and more recognition in the sport as we continue to grow. However, some players only play for the recognition from others. IF THIS IS YOUR MINDSET, IT WILL HINDER YOUR PROGRESS!!!
There is a popular saying that goes something like this…
You are not what you think you are.
You are not what other people think you are.
You are what you think that other people think that you are.
Sadly, this is true for many table tennis players.
Many players at the club are so concerned with rating that they don’t want to play tournaments because it changes their “status” at the club. Instead of being a top-dog-2000 player, they are viewed as an average 1850 player. Stopping tournament participation hinders long term progress. This same mindset is true in regards to coaching. Many new players who arrive at my door for their first lesson just want to show me all of their flashy serves or tell me about their great wins from ten years ago. They want to be seen as elite. However, when they come to me for lessons, we should be trying to make improvements, not just trying to impress each other. This same mindset hinders tournament performance. Many tournament players are SOOOOoooooo concerned with who is watching that they feel extra pressure when Massimo Costantini or Gordon Kaye or Angela Guan or Sean O’Neil or Larry Hodges is watching, that they get too nervous. On the flip side, they get depressed when no one is watching them because no one saw the amazing roll-around-the-net loop that they landed at match point.
BEING CONCERNED WITH WHAT OTHERS THINK ABOUT YOU WILL HINDER YOUR PERFORMANCE!!!
If you want to make significant progress in your game, then focus on your game, focus on developing strengths, focus on fixing your weak points, focus on what is truly going to make you a better player. Stop trying to play exclusively on the premier court so that you can be applauded for every point. Stop checking facebook every 3 minutes to see how many “likes” that you got on your amazing hit. Stop calculating your rating during every match. Be the best player that you can be and give your best effort without worry what others might think.