Anger under pressure

Table Tennis Mental Preparation

Last updated 5 years ago

Nathan Cohen

Nathan Cohen Asked 9 years ago

Dear Coach,

I have never been able to beat my dad at table tennis, he is nothing special but whenever i am doing really well, he always makes me choke and i mess up. Also no whenever i play, if i mess up simple shots, i start getting very angry which makes me miss even more. My dad ends up quitting on me whenever we are playing because i get so mad. How do i keep myself from missing those easy shots, and keeping my temper cool. Please help, i really need to beat him. So please help.


Nathan Cohen

Alois Rosario

Alois Rosario Answered 9 years ago

Hi Nathan,

I think how to beat your Dad has been answered by you.  You need to keep calm under pressure.

Try to use a simple technique that whenever you start to recognise that you are getting angry, take a long slow deep breath focusing just on the breath going in and out.  It should take about 15 seconds.  Count in for 6 hold for 2 and then count out for 7.

Once you have finished the breath you can then think about your tactic for the nest point. YOu would have worked out which serve is your best option so try to use this often.

YOu know that getting angry doesn't help you which is great.  Now it is a matter of trying to find a way to keep yourself calm.  Using this simple breath technique will help.

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Thoughts on this question

Yousaid Cool

Yousaid Cool Posted 6 years ago

I too can never beat my dad.

however, the problem is not that i get angry, rather, my father is just too good in reading me and my game. Its like he doesn't have his own strategy or tactics. He only focuses on reading my strategy and countering it. That is the main reason why i fail every time.

any suggestions as to how i can beat him?

Romeo Chua

Romeo Chua Posted 6 years ago

well, I suppose you can surprise him with a new tactic :) . If he counters your new tactic, then you just have to switch back to your old tactic, vice-versa.

Romeo Chua

Romeo Chua Posted 6 years ago

but more importantly, you need to manage your anger and keep calm. Focus on the game instead. It will keep you from choking.

Yousaid Cool

Yousaid Cool Posted 6 years ago

Thanks a bunch romeo for that. Ill try it out.


Jean Balthazar

Jean Balthazar Posted 5 years ago

Hey Nathan,

For once I will not speak about table tennis technique or strategy. Man, it's your father! How can you get angry playing with him? It's not just another opponent you want to beat to reach whatever target. The result of those friendly games doesn't matter. Enjoy the time you spend playing together. Just focus on improving your game, play with him, and soon enough you will win a game and he'll be proud of you.

Much later, someday, you'll miss the times when he seamed to be untouchable.



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