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April 1, 1998
The Direction Reaction

Welcome to the tennis lesson hotline, sponsored by Tom's Tennis Tapes, "educating players one mind at a time". I'm Tom Veneziano. This lesson lasts approximately 2 minutes and changes on the first of every month.

There are three techniques that can increase your speed in tennis. The Vision Straddle, the Split Step, and the Direction Reaction. I would like to tackle the Direction Reaction one more time. The Direction Reaction is exactly what it sounds like. You react according to the direction of the ball off of your opponent's racket. Remember the ball has a direction before it has a destination. Your mind should be thinking about the direction first and the destination second. Unfortunately, most players think of the destination first. This causes a slight hesitation before they move to the ball. When I'm working on this drill and I tell players to go after the ball, they look over at me and say, why should I, that ball was going out. I quickly point out, if you know the ball is going out you waited way too long to react to the ball. 

Let's see if I can illustrate this better. Will you agree that when the ball is a foot or so off of your opponent's strings a certain set of conditions exist that are different than when the ball is 5 or 10 feet off of your opponent's strings? I hope your answer is yes. 

When the ball is a foot or so off your opponent's strings no one knows for sure if the ball is going to be in or out. When the ball is 5 or 10 feet off the strings players can begin to tell if a ball is going in or not. When it gets 15 to 20 feet off the strings your chances of figuring whether a ball is in or out increases dramatically. The conditions change the farther the ball is off your opponent's strings. When you tell me you knew that ball was going out, you've waited 15 or 20 feet off your opponents strings before you began reacting to the ball! 

The art of the Direction Reaction is to react when the ball is a foot or so off your opponent's strings and begin moving immediately.  No one knows, including the Pros, exactly where the ball is going. You react first, then analyze if the ball is going in or out. The next time you're practicing give it a try! Move according to the direction of the ball off your opponent's strings. Do not wait until you know for sure if the ball is in or out.  I'll see you at Wimbledon! 

For more detailed information about my audio tape "Three Mental Techniques to Increase your Speed in Tennis" click here

Copyright © 2000 Tom Veneziano.  All rights  reserved. 

What others are saying about my tapes!

"Tom deals with the thinking end of tennis like no one else. It's almost too difficult to explain, you have to experience it. He has an uncanny knack for getting right to the heart of the matter. You come away thinking, that's right: it makes sense!"

Colleen Cremer, Houston, TX.

"It's interesting to note that everyone can use these tapes from beginner to championship level. You can apply the information to whatever level you play on."

Dan Hanusa, Houston, TX.

" Tom's audio cassettes have changed my thinking, aligning it with the correct information needed to improve my game. He's right there with you, inside your head, challenging you to make those changes. It's like having your own personal coach! I highly recommend his tapes for everyone."

Linda Zimmerman, Houston, TX.

"On the way to my HLTA match I listened to Tom's tape, "Some Before Match Pointers." Call it a coincidence, but I won my first HLTA match ever! I just seemed to be in a better frame of mind. Thanks, Tom."

Mary Ogden, Houston, TX.

"Tom and I have been friends for over twenty years. It's not surprising to me players talk so positively about his tapes. He's always possessed exceptional athletic ability along with an unusual analytical mind. Tom simply likes to think! At times he would drive me crazy, but he was the driving force behind my journey into tennis. I'm 6'1" and Tom is 5'6" but I could never beat the little imp! All joking aside, if Tom's thinking is on audio cassettes, you should listen! You'll never view tennis the same way again!"

Sam Lacava,Tennis Professional, Stewartsville, N.J.

Thank you all for the testimonials! I appreciate it!

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