I am a HUGE fan of solo practice. Not enough squash players do it and I believe that is partly because they don’t know what, how or why to practice.
As a coach, that’s part of my job to clarify those points to my students.
For this article though, I want to assume that you regularly hit the ball on your own as part of your training.
When we play matches we feel pressure. Pressure to win points. We get a little nervous in various situations, especially after a long rally when faced with an opportunity to win the point.
Ideally, our training should prepare us for what we will face in real matches.
The next time you go on court, I want you to have prepared a routine that contains five or six different hitting routines, each with a set number of shots.
For example, 30 forehand drives whose first bounce lands in the service box, 30 forehand volleys with one foot in the service box at all times, 30 forehand volleys with you standing about one racket length away from the frontwall, forehand/backhand volleys in the middle of the frontwall, move to the backhand side doing the reverse of the forehand routine.
Phew, that’s 7 exercises.
Now do then without a mistake in any.
If you make a mistake in any of the exercises, go back to the complete beginning.
If 30 is too many, start with 10.
Do it until the time finishes or you have completed it.
I guarantee that when you are close to finish you WILL feel the pressure, especially if the ball is close to the sidewall.
It’s a GREAT way to partially rec-create the same pressure you feel in a match and the feeling of doing the routine is so exciting.
It makes you want to do more routines like that.
Try it and tell me what happens.