Tuesday, 22 December 2009

Seven Days of Squash

Well not quite as I didn't play on Thursday but with two separate games on Sunday that does add up to seven games in seven days. This is the sort of regime that I need to make common place if I'm going to see any kind of rapid improvement in my game although I suspect that a higher proportion of the week needs to be set aside for solo practice drills etc. Match play at this stage of the program does have some benefits though. Playing against a range of opponents has given me a better indication of the level I'm at, taught me more about the rules and practice of interference and given me a massive buzz for the game. Last night I must have played several hundred wall hugging forehand drives in my mind trying to sleep.

Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Dancing with myself

Last night I was forced to do something I had been secretly keen to do ever since I have started my quest for squash mastery, play by myself. A solo training session appeals to me because it gives you the chance to practice the same shots over and over again effectively making twice as many strokes as you would with an opponent. The only thing that had been holding me back is my local sports centre's insistence on have two membership ID's in order to make a booking and the feeling of looking a twat for playing squash with no mates. My hand was forced when having booked a court quite early in the evening none of my usual partners were able to make it. I only found this out once I was already changed and psyched for squash.

With my mind set on endless rail shots and not much else I turned up at the court to see wise looking old man on the court before me with exactly the same idea although slightly more imagination. His single handed drill varied from the repetitive down the wall shots on as he did what is probably very basic to most players but a revelation to me, playing alternately of the front wall then side wall. He could stand on the T and play forehand then back hand one after another without moving his feet. Once he had refused the offer of a two player knock around I had the court to myself and tried to emulate this mighty sage. Funnily enough at first I found this simple pattern almost impossible to keep up for more than two shots. My ineptitude served to give me a great run around but once off the T it was hard to get back into the rhythm. By the end of the session I was able to stand almost still and play about ten shots that all came neatly back to me with the key being accurate placement on the front wall.

Whilst I haven't quite beaten my fear of looking a billy-no-mates during these solo sessions it's certainly something I'm going to try and fit in more often. if anyone has any suggestions for other good one player exercises I'd be interested to hear?