Accelerate Your Play!
Book Reviews and Press Releases
David Ranney's Tennis: Play the Mental Game provides clear, easy to follow mini lessons and tips that will benefit players of any level. Since reading The Inner game of Tennis by Tim Gallwey so many years ago, I have not seen another book that addresses such an essential aspect of tennis so well. Watch your game get better and better as you experience what playing the mental game is all about.
Billie Jean King, winner of six Wimbledon singles championships and four US Open Championships
Although brief in length, David Ranney's "Tennis:Play the Mental Game" is long on useful information. Written from the perspective of a player, this is the kind of advice that makes sense from the first reading. You don't need a Ph D to understand how to benefit immediately from this work. If you have ever played below your level, had problems with your temper or felt the frustration in playing this wonderful game of tennis, David's book is definitely the remedy!
Ron Waite, USPTR
Author of the column, Turbo Tennis on www.tennisserver.com
What A Former World Class Player Says
Here is what my friend Ken Stuart wrote in the Foreword for my book. (Ken is a former world class player and the owner of Palisades Tennis Club in Newport Beach, CA).
"If you are reading these words, two things are certain: You are likely serious about your tennis and you believe there is something out there that is going to make you a better tennis player. This book is it!
During my tennis teaching days, I was often asked; 'Ken, can you teach me a forehand, backhand, overhead smash, footwork, etc.' I always answered in the affirmative and followed it with, 'Oh yeah, I can also teach you how to play tennis because they (your strokes) are not much related to playing the game.
Rarely, if ever, do you have the opportunity to read something that has been written first hand. This book will make you a better tennis player because the information in it is tried, tested and true. And it comes from a great tennis player in his own right; David Ranney. Dave's experience speaks for itself, and his advice in this book is solid. Here are some questions you can ask yourself to determine the value of the content in this book.
The answer to each of these questions is that it is essentially indistinguishable. The logical conclusion is then that if 'strokes' don't make the difference among all these greats then what does? EXACTLY!
It is the mental part of the game that each of these people is commonly great at. You too can become a much, much better player without changing your strokes. The great coach Robert Van't Hof once said; 'If you do the right thing at the right time in tennis you are likely going to win.' The catch is how do you get there? This book will give you a path to follow. Use it and you'll be miles ahead of people you are equal with now.
You need only to look back at how many countless hours you have put into the development of your strokes. Now you have to spend the same dedication on the mental part of your game. Dave Ranney will guide you through the steps you need to practice to become a much better tennis player."
Ken Stuart is a former world class player and the owner of Palisades Tennis Club in Newport Beach, CA
After only a few days of owning your book, my tennis game has improved dramatically! I never thought I could experience this big a jump and unlike changing grips, switching racquets, or whatever, this is the kind of change that will be permanent...Although it's kind of nerve wracking to just follow the ball with your eyes all the way to the racquet and just hit it, regardless of whether it goes in or out, this is letting me hit the ball so much deeper and harder than before. Thanks very much.
David's principles will make you a believer in the paradox that by "letting go” you achieve more. Wait until you experience a mind and body that has "let go", is calm, and relaxed; it feels unbelievably fun! You will achieve greater focus, concentration and results on the tennis court.
Carla Lyons, Bellingham, WA
I love improvement and your ideas have been terrific to that end. I have another disciple in "the fold" as I let him read your book. He has been practicing both "core" foundations; breathing and watching. He has improved also. He is a 50 year old 4.5 player. His wife noticed him mumbling his mantra while studying the "core" and promptly took it away from him and now she is in "the fold" as well. We may have started a groundswell. I even have another friend studying it and his initial reaction was "I'm too old to learn new tricks!" Au contraire!
I am where I can see the ball actually slow after it lands allowing my feeble mind time to relax and execute the shot as opposed to reacting to the initial rate of pace during its' flight. That is interesting to watch. The BIGGEST benefit of all is just keeping all the other SPAM debris or conscious thought from interfering with actual play. It is such a relaxing way to play; mindless.
George Kraft, Seattle, WA
Working with David and the concepts he sets forth in his book simply made tennis more fun. Like many tennis players, I spent all of my energy working to obtain the perfect stroke. Each time the ball came over the net, I was concerned with having the perfect backswing, the perfect contact point, a strong follow-through. My fixation on the physical aspects of the game always resulted in a negative experience; every time I swung the racket, something went wrong.
When I started working with David, he changed my entire focus. Instead of worrying about the physical details, he taught me to focus my mind in a manner that allows my body to hit the shots I know I have. His teachings provided me the tools necessary to quit worrying about the details of each stroke, and to focus upon the ball and relaxation. David, through his book, teaches to not judge your swing or your shot. Instead, ask what happened and let your body make its own corrections. For me, the immediate positive result is that I was no longer criticizing each and every one of my shots. This made the game more fun.
His teachings are surprisingly simple yet effective -- focus your mind away from the physical production of a stroke so that your body is relaxed and hits the stroke you've learned. His book sets forth very simple and straightforward tools to make sure that your mind stays on task, and stays out of the way of your body.
Yes my game has gotten much better. I'm able to stay in points much longer, stay relaxed in tight matches, and stay focused on the game and not the details of the stroke. But like most of us, that is only part of the goal. I play tennis for fun. After working with David, I've had more fun playing tennis in the last three years that I did in the previous 30.
I would recommend anyone who wants to have fun with tennis (and get better) to read the book and stick with the tools that he provides.
Doug Robertson, owner, Bellingham Tennis Club.
Doug's been playing since age 9 and is now on the other side of 40.
Thanks Dave!!!! I've put what you taught me into practice and it's made an incredible difference for me. I think it's the biggest revelation I've ever experienced in my 20 some odd years of trying to get better at this game.
Alisa Hashimoto, Seattle, WA
hehe man I love you!!
I played Malta open semi final today and lost first set 6-2. I had your book with me on the court and read about choking and seeing the ball, then BAM! 6-4 6-1 :) Dude I am so happy thank you soooo soooo much.
I have final on Sunday @ 5pm!!!
THANKSSSSSSSSSSSS ONCE AGAIN!!! YOUR BOOK REALLY HELPED!!!
Matija Pecotic, Malta
Let me tell you how pleased I am with your book, I have been working on breathing and watching the spin of the ball and just those two things have cut my unforced errors in half. (I am the queen of errors).
Phyllis, Sedona, AZ
I am really enjoying your book and making an attempt to integrate it into my game. I'll let you know how it goes. Thanks for your inspiration.
Joe, Philadelphia, PA
David, I just wanted to write and thank you for sending me that PDF on Mini Lessons – I love it! And I have learned so much. I'm going to My Book & CDs so I can carry it in my tennis bag – I already have the PDF copy highlighted and tags in SEVERAL places.
Jann, Martinez, CA
Thank you for your free tennis tips. I have printed the ten pages of tips. This morning, I read them for the first time. I am a 3.0 player working to play mixed doubles with my husband who is a 3.5. I really focused on seeing the ball when our opponent hit and then watch it bounce on the court. We won the first set 6-4, but lost the next sets 4-6 and 3-6. I think I need to see the ball better to my racquet. Anyway, seeing the ball slowed it down and I felt relaxed. Thanks again,
Thank you so much for the Mini Lesson Tennis Tips. I applied seeing the ball in my games and it helps a lot, it improves my consistency, and I was able to return 4 to 5 times until my opponent got the error. I appreciate very much all lessons, I am applying it.
I own a lot of tennis books, and your book is excellent. I have read some other mental tennis books, but I have a hard time finishing them because of all the boring Psychology terms which make me fall asleep. I love your book because it is written by a tennis player. It is easy understand, and apply.
I've really enjoyed reading your book and currently subscribe to your emails. I have learned so much from you. It definitely shows in my game. I've talked to many of my tennis friends about your concepts and am always recommending your book.
I have been reading your newsletters since about October of last year (2006). After much skepticism I purchased your book. Because it is not very expensive, I could afford to take a chance to read about what you teach. As a tennis instructor I am always curious as to what else is going on in the tennis industry to try to keep up with what is going on out there.
I have to say, your book has helped my game immensely. I have never felt IN MY ENTIRE LIFE I have ever played up to my potential. I played one year of college tennis at Lamar University in Beaumont, TX in 1987 - 1988. I got burned out (just very frustrated) and swore I was never going to play again. Long story short, I ended up teaching lessons in 1993 and have been ever since. My first teaching job was at The Houston Country Club. Jim Rombeau was the Head Pro. You may know him, he's a California boy. He just retired as a matter of fact. Anyway, there is a guy who still teaches there named David Dowlen (about 10 years older than me) who has beaten McEnroe in doubles. Now, this is my first experience in teaching tennis and we sometimes would play doubles in our spare time when it was slow. Let me tell you how intimidating that was. I played to other's expectations and have never played up to my potential ever.
After reading your e-book (and I am not done yet) my game has elevated immensely. I have to tell you that I am starting to hit shots that I know that I can make. I should say, I am allowing my body to make the shots that I know it can make. Other people can actually see what I know that my body is capable of doing. I am also not getting angry and letting my conscious mind interfere with my other subconscious mind. I haven't finished your book yet, because I am having so much fun focusing and concentrating on the spin of the ball to the blur of my racket and breathing through the bounce and the hit during rallies and from the serve through the return during those shots as well.
To avoid rambling even more, I am going to simply say, "Thank you!" I am really getting in tune with my body and letting it do what it can do. I also want to say that I have caught myself telling others bits and pieces of what I have learned from you and making the mistake of telling them that I am finally playing up to my potential. When in fact, I don't know if I have actually reached my potential but I know that I am hitting the ball cleaner and more consistently than I ever have. I may not even know my own potential. I am optimistically thinking that it is higher than I even thought (and I am not trying to be or sound egotistical). I just don't want to sell myself short.
Mike Alcott, USPTA
Head Tennis Professional,
The Briar Club
Houston, TX 77027
It has been almost one year since I met you at the National Indoor's in Seattle last year and took "the little test" with you and bought your book. I have worked continuously for months on the Mental Game and the Core Principles. As you have stated many times - it does take time. And work. And perseverance. However, it's starting to pay off. In June I played in the Intermountain Sectionals and had the "best loss" I can ever remember. Three sets, tie breakers, service breaks back and forth, etc. I lost 7-5 in the third. But I was mentally there all the way. The other guy played a little better that day. Your new Lesson #60 is great! A few weeks ago I played down in a 55's tournament in Washington, D.C. and won the tournament. It was all about the mental game. I will go re-read your book again. I probably won't see you at the indoors this year in Vancouver, WA - just too far to come this year. Hope you can make it and do as well in doubles as you did last year. Well, no, I hope you do better and win the whole thing!
I don't know if you remember but I sent a note saying I was ordering your book for my husband for his birthday - well he has read about 6 pages so far and I have been traveling and busy but I have read through lesson 4 so far and have even put your ideas into play and it is so great the way they are working for me!
My husband usually gives me the alleys when we play but last week, I didn't take the alleys and I won 3 out of the 6 games - he commented I was playing great - - - I owe it all to you!!! I used the relaxation method - and breathing - and I am working on seeing the ball - - I have to read the bounce and hit and get that working too - I am so excited! I am going to re-read what I already read plus continue on in the book. I just love it.
Thank you so much - for sharing your wealth of knowledge! (I love your mini lessons too)
I am still reading The Inner Game of Tennis by Timothy Gallwey, based on your suggestion. It is very informative as you call it the "Bible of mental tennis".
Since the Self 2 performs the best with clearest visualized images, it make sense for me to have some instructional DVDs, so, I may learn some "better images" (the better strokes which I have not learned) to be stored in my memory bank.
Do you have any recommendation which DVDs would be best to serve this purpose? I will greatly appreciate it if you can give me an recommendation. Just to let you know that I bought 6 mental tennis books at the same time I bought your book, and I found yours is the best among all the others. (I did not pick Timothy's book in the first round.)
Also, I wish to let you know that in the last 40 years, I went through many tennis teachers and books. Even though I have never met you (I appreciate that I did have a chance to talk to you), I regard you as the best teach I have ever known in my life.
Thank you in advance.
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