Monday, November 28, 2011

Tennis Books – some gift recommendations

Read any good books lately? Do you read tennis books for self-improvement, enjoyment or any other reason? I’ve read several that I can recommend no matter what your motivation for reading is.

The Thanksgiving holiday falls on my birthday every few years – as it will next year – so I usually get a present before the traditional gift giving season arrives. Last week, I used my Amazon gift certificate to purchase a tennis book that I’ve yet to read: Allen Fox’s Think To Win: The Strategic Dimension of Tennis, which was published nearly 20 years ago. Unless I’m mistaken, Fox frequently writes for Tennis Magazine which, like Bill Simon’s Inside Tennis, I read cover-to-cover almost as soon as it comes in the mail. But I haven’t read a tennis book in a while, so I decided to give this one a read. Besides, the offseason is a great time for self-improvement off the court, since playing time is limited due to the weather.

The last tennis book I can remember reading was Agassi’s Open, a gift I received a couple of years ago. It’s pretty good and interesting unless you’re not a fan of his. I was lukewarm to him during his playing days, and I enjoyed it even though I usually read tennis books about improving my game in lieu of autobiographies or biographies. However, one of my favorite tennis book reads is John McEnroe’s autobiography You Cannot Be Serious.

The two best tennis books I’ve ever read for improving my game were Winning Ugly by Brad Gilbert and Unlimited Doubles by Steve Tourdo. Gilbert’s book helped me to raise my singles level from 3.0 to 3.5 while Tourdo’s helped me to learn the important keys to success while playing doubles.

A tennis book that I would be hard pressed to recommend is considered a classic by many: The Inner Game of Tennis by W. Timothy Gallwey, which I found to be a difficult read of which little applied to me.

What are some of your favorites?

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