In the world of tennis, the period of Covid-19 is for a lot of a recreation of “dice”. From bonuses and strain, some appear to slide into melancholy and melancholy … All the constraints linked to the pandemic (difficult journeys, plentiful PCR exams, virtually whole absence of the public and even fourteen as in Australia) weigh closely in thermobags.
Psychologically worn out, Gilles Simon, for instance, has simply determined to take a break whereas ready to regain the want. “We are drawing at the moment, whether morally or physically, admitted Alizé Cornet in Melbourne in February. It is not complaining that to say that it is hard. Me, I have had zero morale for a month, for personal reasons, but also because of the context. When we’re our age (Editor’s note: 36 years old for Simon, 31 years old for her), it’s very difficult to still find a reason to put ourselves so hard for a sport that we love very much but which hurts us. The Niçoise confessed to having cried a lot. “Not necessarily because I lost matches, she said, but because the situation weighs on me, that my relatives are depressed in France too. “
Back after more than a year of absence due to injury, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, 35, saw the extent of the damage. “For many this is not possible, says Manceau. Guys tell you that they are going to take a plane to lose money, with no motivation and no real points at stake (Editor’s note: the ranking is frozen until mid-March before being specially adapted until August). They are at their end and that is the reality. Young people, on the other hand, are hypermotivated. “
“After 30 years, you have to find meaning to continue”
This Wednesday, March 3, the ATP provided a first element of financial response by announcing an increase in the minimum endowment for the ATP 250 and 500 tournaments up to Wimbledon, mainly financed with the help of the bonus which is usually used to reward the twelve best in the world at the end of the season.
Since March 2020 and a first confinement which has almost all deprived them of rackets, players have become aware of the “normal” life that exists next to the circuit. Enjoy the joys of home other than a stopover between two planes. And measured even more the sacrifices demanded by their existence as privileged. “They have achieved things, while they have less time to ask questions in an ordinary pattern, analyzes Sophie Huguet, sports psychologist and mental trainer. They had time to ask themselves and this generated a lot of questions about their life balance. After 30 years, we must find meaning to continue in these conditions, especially since uncertainty remains over the months to come. “
Especially since the counterparts are not very encouraging with endowments in free fall, a living environment that most often comes down to the triple room-shuttle-stadium and the impossibility of moving with loved ones. “At this point in my career and in my life, I only plan to travel with my family. There is no question of being away for such a long period, ”defined the American John Isner, 35, to justify his withdrawal from the Australian Open.
“Go look for the passion we keep for this game”
“At the base, tennis is already a very hard sport mentally notes Christophe Bernelle, responsible for the mental pole of the FFT. In matches, we are most of the time with our thoughts and the current situation adds to the difficulties. It is therefore all the more important to be able to be a philosopher, to rely on simple things. We know that there are things that depend on us and others that are not. We are in a sort of in-between with these bubbles, these tests and it is heavy. You have to be able to refocus on the hard core, that is to say the luck and happiness that we have to be on a court. “
In short, persuading yourself to see the glass half full when you feel it irremediably empty, including on the physical level, difficult to keep on top in a roller coaster of organization. “You have to work a little on yourself,” continues the psychiatrist from the Fed. To seek in the passion that we keep for this game. In this area, the best example is Nadal. He manages to disregard the context and always exhibits the same pleasure, the same intensity, the same willpower whether in training or in the Roland-Garros final… “
Yes, but not everyone is Nadal, 34, Djokovic, 33, or Federer, 39, with records to be chased every week to keep the flame at the top. “They are out of the ordinary mentally and, somewhere, with their staff, they are already used to living in a sort of bubble,” slips Sophie Huguet. Conditions don’t change that much for them and they have such strong goals to motivate them even further that they are almost at an advantage. “
“It’s important to be content with what we have”
Dad of a little Stone, one year old, Jérémy Chardy, 34, had a hard time finishing 2020. “Usually, I love to play but, there, it really becomes a job”, summarized- he. Since then, the Palois has managed to realize motivation.
” This is not apparent. Personal motivation is the first key, notes Sophie Huguet. Know why we’re enjoying, how far we wish to go. The second key is maybe to inform your self to cease a bit to revive your want. There they’ll expertise actual life and this may speed up a retirement determination that will have been made in a yr or two. The third key, after having been head in the handlebars, is to benefit from the interval to begin fascinated about the aftermath. “
Another tip, forget your goals … or create others by using this new space-time to fight weariness and work technically, tactically, etc. And to think that we are not the worst off. “We should arrive at get off middle, to say that the artists can’t play at the second, that the rooms are closed, unfastened Christophe Bernelle. They, no less than, can follow their occupation, their ardour and nonetheless earn just a little cash too. It’s essential to be content material with what we now have. For me, this era is a lot tougher for juniors or those that have simply moved on to the massive boys and who’ve restricted entry to tournaments, given the lower in provide, he stated. So the query is: Do I nonetheless benefit from it or do I give method to younger folks? “