Pickleball Therapy

Is losing 3-11 not fun for you? It might be - depending on how you look at it PLUS Too old or unskilled to play pickleball?
You just got done playing 6 games, never scoring more than 3 points in a game.
I try to share come encouragement by saying to you “It’s not the end of the world.” You agree but then add “But it’s less fun.”
Is it less fun? Let’s talk about it.
Oftentimes when we are thinking through arguably negative situations, like not scoring more than 3 points in a game for 6 games in a row, the negativity stems not from the situation itself. Rather, the negativity stems from our framing of the situation. The situation itself is neutral. It is we who imbue it with the negative.
Generally speaking, losing 3-11 is not as much fun as losing 5-11, is not as much fun as losing 9-11, is not as much fun as losing 13-15. And we haven’t yet even gotten to the winning side.
If we stopped here, then perhaps “But it’s less fun” would be correct.
There is, however, more road to explore. What about losing 1-11? Or the pickle 0-11?
Even worse, what about comparing 3-11 to not playing at all? Or being injured? Or [fill in the countless things that are nowhere near as fun as playing a pickleball game]?
With this framing, then the correct statement after a day of 3-11 games is “It was certainly more fun than the alternatives.”
This is the power of framing. You get to decide the relevant context that you place your day’s events in. Use your framing power to maintain a better perspective and enjoy a stronger relationship with pickleball (and everything else too).
If you enjoy this approach to the mental game, check out the Pickleball Therapy Podcast on all platforms (YouTube too).

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Stay well

What is Pickleball Therapy?

The podcast dedicated to your pickleball improvement. We are here to help you achieve your pickleball goals, with a focus on the mental part of your game. Our mission is to share with you a positive and more healthy way of engaging with pickleball. Together let’s forge a stronger relationship with the sport we all love. With the added benefit of playing better pickleball too. No matter what you are trying to accomplish in your pickleball journey, Pickleball Therapy is here to encourage and support you.

[00:00:00.330] - Speaker 1
Hello, and welcome to pickleball Therapy, the podcast dedicated to your pickleball improvement. Hope you're having a great week. My name is Tony Royga. I'm your host of this weekly podcast, which is part of the betterpickleball. Com network of resources that are designed specifically to help you with your pickleball journey. Wherever you are in your journey and whatever it is that you want to accomplish, betterpickleball. Com is there to help you out. If you're not on an email list yet, make sure you're on an email list. If you are on an email list and there's a part of the game that's vexing you right now, check out our academy. Go to our website. I'll put a link down below, betterpickupall. Com. Check out our classes. See if the class that you need is there for you. You're dealing with bangers, you're dealing with unforced errors, whatever it is. My guess is we got a course in there that are going to help you out and also be on the look out for more courses as they are announced and launched throughout the year. We just got back from New York City. We're up there for a two-day camp that we had.

[00:00:58.150] - Speaker 1
It was a great opportunity to with 30-some players up in Queens College at the Tennis Center there. We appreciate them hosting us. It was a fantastic opportunity to work with those players. It's a refresher for us as a coach or it just reminds us of the areas that players work through. Struggle is too strong of a term, but basically work through. Players are trying to figure things out, and the different layers are there. It's a process, a process for the players who want to improve. But obviously, attending a camp is not a casual thing. Camps are not inexpensive and it requires traveling and scheduling and things like that. Congratulations to all the campers and everybody who's on a journey and is taking active steps forward to improve. This week's podcast, I wanted to deal with something that a I was during the DAPP, New York Open, the tournament up there. It was a conversation that I was having with Kylene from the Better Pickleball team about tournament performance and things like that. I think you'll find it really helpful It has to do with how we frame things out. It has to do with that perspective part of it that we spoke about last week.

[00:02:21.410] - Speaker 1
It also bleeds over into play because if your mind gets bogged down in not doing well, not only will you not feel as good about the experience, it'll negatively affect you more. It'll make things worse for you when you're playing. And the RIF, I want to touch on this idea of feeling able to play pickleball, whether that's you or whether that's a friend of yours or a family member or somebody you're trying to get into pickleball, I think the RIF will really help you with that. Let's dive into... Actually, I have to do one more thing before we dive into it. I have to do a shout out to those of you who have taken of your time to rate and review the podcast. Really appreciate it. If I don't read one of the reviews, it's not because the review was a bad review or anything like that. We're getting a lot and really appreciate it. We just pull a couple of them and share them with you. There were a couple I wanted to share. One's very short from EgoVue. Tony delivers great pickleball advice and tips for all players looking to improve their game.

[00:03:26.420] - Speaker 1
Solid and simple. I like that heading for the review. Thank you very much. Then there was one. I don't know who the reviewer was because it's a bunch of letters in the user name, but it's about grounding yourself in reality. It says, Tony's latest episode was spot on, living in and primarily playing pickleball in an active 55+ community, how one plays one day can be significantly different the next. The injuries happen, and as we age, the time to heal increases, which contributes to how well or not we play. Tony's thoughts on sharing pickleball are also correct and inspiring. Our club has grown from slightly over 20 members to 55. So not 55 age, 55 number, which is over 10% of their whole community, which is awesome. Pickup Ball is a great social activity to help others who could otherwise be isolated 100%. In The Rift today, we're going to be talking about this idea about being able to play. I think It's important, right? If you're trying to help somebody who maybe feels that they're not up to it, I'll share some thoughts that will hopefully help you with that. So thank you, those two reviewers, as well as everybody else who's had taken the time to review the podcast.

[00:04:29.760] - Speaker 1
As I mentioned from time to time on this podcast, reviewing it is not the thing just to stroke our ego and make us feel better about the podcast. It's something that the algorithm uses to determine whether it's going to share the podcast with other pickleball players. The more reviews and the higher the reviews, the better the chances of that, which is, at the end of the day, the whole idea, right, about this podcast is helping as many players as we can. All right, let me dive into what happened with Kylene from our Better Pigawal team. Kylene had the good fortune to play in the APP tournament on Friday. She and her friend Jess wanted to play. They played 3.5, and then they were in a combined age bracket, 19 and 35 plus got combined. They ended up with a Bronze medal, which is awesome. They were the highest. They actually won in their age group, meaning they were the highest resulting team in the 35 plus. Two teams, 19 plus, ended up with this bra gold and silver. It was a really good day of that. But the conversation actually happened on Sunday. I believe it was Sunday.

[00:05:41.330] - Speaker 1
She was letting me know, Kylene was letting me know about how her partner Jess was doing in mix. It was a rough day for them, for her and her partner. It wasn't a great day at pickleball. I wrote back and I said, Well, it's not really the end of the world. In my mind, I'm saying to myself, Well, they're playing pickleball in New York, so it's pretty good stuff. Then Kylene wrote me back saying, Yes, true, but definitely less fun. That's what I wanted to dive into today. I asked Kylene for permission to share this with you also. She's okay with me sharing this with you. But it got me to thinking about how What appears to be a pretty innocuous statement. Basically, again, they're struggling in score points, not having a great day in terms of results, in terms of the results on the court. Then it's an apparently innocuous statement like, Yeah, definitely less fun. We talked about this in a few podcasts before about being particularly mindful, being guarded about our mental processes. This is one that I wanted to talk about because I think it's easy, and it's not criticism of Kylin, it's a very natural reaction.

[00:06:54.960] - Speaker 1
Well, less fun because we're not scoring a lot of points. It would be more fun if we were more competitive in those matches, in terms of score, anyway. I would suggest that it depends on how you frame it. So saying definitely less fun, definitely less fun, definitely less fun than what? That's the thing, right? So is it definitely less fun than scoring eight points in the game? Okay, I'll give you that. Is it definitely less fun than winning that game? Okay, I'm not going to argue with that. But is it definitely less fun than potentially not playing in the tournament because of the possibility that we're going to have that result? Now, that's where I would say, I don't think so, right? I would suggest that if you're able to get out there and play and enjoy a day of pickleball, regardless of the results, that's going to be a better day than not playing pickleball. It goes back to our bowl of ice cream idea, the idea that any time that you're on the pickleball court, any time you're able to get out there and have some moments with your partner and with opponents and hit this ball around and run around the court are better than moments that you don't do that.

[00:08:12.680] - Speaker 1
If you use that as your baseline, What am I comparing it to? I think the answer you would arrive at in terms of definitely less fun is that, No, wait a minute. Even though I'm not scoring a lot right now, I'm definitely having more fun than I would if I wasn't playing. I'll give you a personal story that happened during the US Open was me and my good friend and mixed doubles partner at this US Open, Stephanie Lane, who I borrowed from her regular partner, Johannes Vincent, couldn't make it. Stephanie and I were able to play together. We played up against David Weinbach and Chris Cargis. Chris Cargis and David Weinbach are very, very, very good senior pro-pick-a-ball players. They're very good pick-a-ball players anyway. But in senior pro, they're top. I think they meddled. I can't remember exactly what happened, but they ran deep, right? And they beat us, and the score was like two and two or two and three, something like that, okay? So you look at it and you say, Wow, that's got to not be fun, right, for me and Stephanie. But I'll tell you one thing, and we have the footage.

[00:09:15.860] - Speaker 1
I'll be publishing it on the channel, on the Intupigo channel in the next, hopefully, the next month or so. I just haven't gotten around to it yet. There's too many other things to do. But it's a fun match. We had a good time. We played, we battled, we had conversation. It was all around a good experience. If you told me, Okay, Tony, you can go back in a time machine and not play that game. You can feign injury or whatever, pull out of the tournament, whatever you want to do. You can avoid that experience. No way. I want to play it. I know the score because I'm in the time machine. I already know it was two and two or two and three as a loss. Give me the game. Because the game itself was worth playing regardless of the outcome. Now, would it have been more fun? It would have been five and five, or eight and eight, or nine and nine, or we had one, or had gone three, and we had one in a tight third. Of course, those were great. I mean, those were amazing. Right? Better. Frankly, they're also better because we play longer, right?

[00:10:18.850] - Speaker 1
There's more rallies to play. But I would take the 11-2, 11-2, or 11-2, 11-3, whatever it was, game over not playing at all. That's where the baseline becomes important to how you think about these things. When you have a bad day out on the course, don't compare it to the week before, the month before, whenever it was that you had the incredible day that you won every game you played and whatever. Now you're comparing it to some panacea thing that isn't really... I think I use that term right. Some panacea thing that isn't really the reality. Why don't you compare it to what if you had not gone to the courts that day? It's not going to be as good of a day. You wouldn't have seen your friend, you wouldn't have had an exercise, you wouldn't have gotten all benefits that you got from going out to the court. Baseline, and thank you, Kylene, for allowing me to share that because I think it's helpful to go through that process and check ourselves sometimes when we're falling into what are relatively easy habits. Again, no criticism, as I mentioned earlier, but easy habit to say, Yeah, just not as much fun as it would be otherwise, because then our brain starts to process that and then starts to feel negative about something that, frankly, shouldn't be feel negative about if you use the correct baseline.

[00:11:28.620] - Speaker 1
All right, in the RIF, I'm going to share with you a story that happened to be on my flight home, the conversation that I had with some very lovely folks from here in Florida, and talk a little bit about how that thinking might limit their entry into our wonderful sport. If you listen to the podcast, you already play pickleball, so you know it's an amazing sport to begin with. Before we dive into the RIF, I wanted to make a quick note here. We've talked about it a few times in the past, but remember to keep track of your shoes. When you think about playing pickleball, there's really only two things that you absolutely must have other than what you normally wear around, normally carry around yourself, glasses, things like that. You need a pickleball paddle, and you need a pair of shoes. Shoes that are made for the sport you're playing. Now, you can play bigger ball in tennis shoes and even court shoes and things like that. Don't play it in jogging shoes and don't play it in walking shoes. I know that some players are playing in hokas now. I don't believe even hoka says you should be playing tennis or any lateral sport in that because that's the key is the lateral movement.

[00:12:34.020] - Speaker 1
So just be careful with those. I'm not telling you not to because I haven't researched them. I haven't gotten out the rabbit hole all the way down. But I can tell you this, the shoe that CJ and I both wear is made by a company that only makes bigger shoes, Tyroll pickleball. We have a code. I'll put it down in the show notes. I believe it's BP10, but double-check me that on the show notes. Use that at checkout. I believe it gives you some discount, plus it helps support our efforts. But if you need shoes, I would definitely recommend having Tire roll on the list of shoes to be considered in your shoe selection process. All right, let's talk about this idea of, Can I really play pickleball? Because I think it's a potential limitation. On the flight back from New York. I sat next to a very lovely couple from here near my area here in Florida, and they had not played pickleball yet, but we started talking. The gentleman said that he was interested in it. He was a former tennis player, didn't play anymore because of some injuries. He did some golf and things like that, but he hadn't really tried pickleball yet.

[00:13:34.550] - Speaker 1
But I got the idea that his spouse, his wife, was not really thinking that pickleball was for her. I tried making the case that she should try it. I removed the serve as an obstacle because the tennis serve, she's thinking about how her husband played the sport of tennis. The serve is going to be an impediment. I explained that to her and to both of them. I just suggested to her that she at least give it a try and understanding that it's an easy entry sport. That's one story that I wanted to share about getting into it. But this idea that one of two played tennis before, so the other one can't play pickleball is something that we just have to be mindful of and be aware that that's probably going on in someone's mind as they're thinking about potentially trying out pickleball. The more that we can share with them stories of folks, which is what I did in this case, stories of folks who have no tennis background coming in and playing, the fact that they could play together. I hit them where it hurt a little bit in a good sense because they like to travel.

[00:14:41.460] - Speaker 1
As a couple, they traveled all over. We were talking about that, too, where they had been and what they enjoyed and things like that. So what did I do? I told them, which is true, you can travel around pickleball. Jill and I, my wife and I, we've traveled all over the world, literally. We played pickleball in Eastern Europe, we played pickle in Western Europe, and we played tournaments in France and in England. We've traveled pretty much all over the US playing some pickleball here and there. Having pickleball as an element of your travel really expands that. So there are ways to find points It's a mix of interest, of conversation with the sport. The other thing that happened was at the New York tournament, my mixed doubles partner's mother was there, and I asked her whether she played pickle. My mixed doubles partner, just to give you an is one of the top senior pro women players right now, particularly in singles. In singles, she's getting gold all the time. Cotting is her name. Her mother was there, and I asked her mother if she played pickle, and she said no. She said her age, which I won't share on the podcast, but she said no, and she said her age.

[00:15:45.450] - Speaker 1
We had given a camp, and some of our campers were there. I asked one of our campers who was a woman as well, and I said, Do you mind if I ask you your age? She didn't mind, so I asked. She was the same age as Cotting's mother. I asked Susan, was the name of the camper. I asked Susan, Susan, do you mind speaking to... And I pointed, and I told her the name, and I said, Do you mind speaking to her about pickle ball and letting her know whether it's something she can do at her age? Because, again, I'm trying to overcome an objection, an obstacle to a person potentially becoming a pickleball player. So when you're interacting with family and friends, if you give it some thought and you apply yourself a little bit, I'm pretty confident you'll be able to overcome their objection. Because, again, if you listen to the podcast, you're obviously very into pickleball. You know the benefits of pickleball. I don't need to tell them to you here. And it's probably a really good chance, I'd say, a high, high, high chance that the benefits that you and I get out of the sport, those persons will get as well if we can just get them out on a pickleball court a few times under the right circumstances.

[00:16:54.420] - Speaker 1
All right, so that's this week's podcast. We've covered the the framing of everything with perspective, as well as helping others play pickleball. I think it's something that as pickleball aficionados, we should bear in mind whenever we can, whenever we're out there, just be open to that type of sharing of our awesome sport. I will be in Tahoe this next week in camps for the next week and a half. In Tahoe, we're working with several players up there. It's going to be a lot of fun. Cj, myself, Kylene and Silban, are going to be up there doing some great work. If you're interested in a camp, I think we still have a few spots left. It'll be last minute, but if you're in the area, if you're in Truckee or South Lake, I think it's called South Lake, anywhere up in that area, if you're in California, even Cacromania area, it's a few hours away, come join us and check with us on the betterpickerball. Com website. If you know somebody who you think might benefit from the camp, let them know, and we'd be happy to have them join us up for the camps. But even though we're at camps, we still have a regular podcast this Friday.

[00:18:05.780] - Speaker 1
If I don't see you or speak to you before then, have a great week, and I'll see you in our next podcast.