Damien Lafont, Ph.D.

mental training – zone and peak performance

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Tennis and Mind

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Stop Your Excuses!

If you watch some matches at the Australian Open you’ll observe a very strange – yet common phenomenon. During each set everything seems Okay for both players – no incident, they just play. Then, suddenly at the end of the set, what was Okay is not anymore: the wind is too strong, the crowd is […]

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The right focus

Nadal won. Again. But this win was tougher than usual. In his post-match interview he said he never played a match feeling so bad physically, he was suffering the whole match. But he won. Tim Smyzcek was close – so close. What made the difference at the end of the fifth set? Here the biggest […]

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Routine: the 3 Steps

In the first step, you ask 2 questions that will allow you to be aware of your thoughts and your activation level. These questions are: What am I am thinking about? and How do I feel? Body-Mind Scan When assessing your feelings, you identify your activation level to regulate it if possible. If you are too […]

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The Titans of the Zone

article also on tennisplayer.net by John Yandell – vol 10-8 Nov. 2014 In a recent  article I outlined multiple components of the so-called “Zone” as described by top researchers and athletes in many sports. The article showed that there probably is no one Zone and the experience and the process of reaching it can be different for […]

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Focus

We often confuse focus, attention and concentration. To clarify, focus of attention represents what we are thinking about. The focus of attention is related to the last thought, image or emotion created before the action. Focus can be internal or external, depending on whether we think of ourselves and our actions or what is outside […]

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Head Fixation and the Mental Game

article also published on tennisplayer.net by John Yandell – September 2014, Vol. 10, Issue 6  Students of professional have noted how top players maintain a still head position, focusing on the contact point until well after the ball has left the strings. Roger Federer is widely recognized as the most dramatic example of head fixation, but we […]

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Routines: How to use them?

Working on your mental game, you will soon ask yourself the following questions about the routine patterns of thoughts and behaviours that you engage in prior to executing your skill. Is the overall lenght of the routine important? What components make up a successful routine? How well practiced should a routine be and is there […]

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Six good reasons to keep your eyes off the ball #6 Zone

Once the player feels confident, his mind is free to focus on the task at hand, one of the main components of the special internal mental state named flow or peak performance. In tennis terminology, this is commonly called “playing in the zone” (Young, 2000, Ford et al., 2002). Focusing on the contact zone could […]

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Six good reasons to keep your eyes off the ball #5 Confidence

Concentration and control can only be achieved if the player has confidence in what he is doing. Self-confidence is one of the most important components of a player’s psychological state prior to and during a match (Harwood and Dent, 2003). Self-confidence is the general belief that one has the ability to perform successfully (Weinberg and […]

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