What You Want to Hear from the Sidelines

Girl Tennis Player - Training

You are out there on the court ready to play. For the most part, you tune out everything around you. But every once in a while, something filters through. What do you want to hear? Chances are, you don’t want to hear booing and jeers. You want to hear only positive, or at least constructive, things from all the people out there cheering for or against you.

10 Things You Want to Hear from the Sidelines

Here are 10 things you want to hear from the sidelines, divided by what you want to hear from your coach, your teammates, your parents, and your fans.

From Your Coach

Your coach is the person on your side who wants you to do your best and knows how to get it out of you. What they say when you are playing is very important.

  1. The next play.

When you turn to your coach, you want to get practical advice. What should you be doing next? You want to be reminded that you should be volleying because it throws your opponent off or when you serve, aim for a specific place.

Whatever it is that you should be doing, you want your coach to be there supporting you and making sure you remember your training and know where you are in the game.

  1. Encouragement.

If you start to worry or get down on yourself, you need someone there that knows what you are thinking and can get you back on track. You want your coach to be there saying you are good enough and that you are the best at XYZ and if you use XYZ the opponent does not have a chance.

  1. Constructive criticism.

If you really want to improve, you don’t want someone there always saying how good you are even when you are playing horribly. You also don’t want someone there telling you how awful you are and not trying to help. Instead, you want to find a balance. You want a coach who is going to tell you when you do well, but also tell you what you are doing wrong when you are not doing your best.

From Your Teammates

When your teammates are watching you, you want them to be your cheerleaders and your ‘spies.’

  1. Cheers.

A lot of teams have actual pep cheers that they yell during games. You may want to hear them yelling this while you are out there. However, even without these, you want to hear them cheering for you and for the team while you are out there. Feeling like you are part of a team is a big part of the fun of playing sports. And even when playing a sport like tennis, where you are playing by yourself or with a partner, you are often part of a bigger team. So getting your teammates support is very helpful.

  1. Communication.

Your opponent is about to hit one at you hard. You are ready for it. But your teammates see something different. They realize that you are about to be tricked with a soft hit. So they yell out to watch for it. Your team will be there to communicate with you and help you by spotting things you miss and giving you tips and advice.

  1. Support.

One of the best things your teammates can do for you is offer you support. They can pick you up when make a mistake and tell you how awesome you are when you do something right. Everybody else around you can be cheering for you, but having your teammates supporting you gives you an extra burst of pride.

From Your Parents or Guardians

Your parents always are there to make you feel good. When you are out on the court, it is no different.

  1. Way to Go.

One of the best things your parents or guardians can do for you is to cheer for you. Maybe the only time they have ever watched tennis is when you are playing. Maybe they are a pro at the sport. It does not matter their tennis knowledge, they want to cheer you on and be there for you. That feels good.

  1. Anything at all.

It is not 100% accurate to say you want your parents to say anything at all. After all, you don’t want them to be out there yelling about how badly you are playing. But think about all the players on teams you have been on throughout the years. How many of them never have parents there to support them?

Appreciate the fact that your parents are able to be there and care enough to do so. No matter what there are saying, with few exception, you should feel lucky they are there to say it.

From the Fans

Your fans are often a reflection on your team. So you should have opinions about their sideline comments.

  1. Good sportsmanship.

Good sportsmanship is shown in many ways. In fact, right off the bat, consider the 25 ways to show good sportsmanship that Janis Meredith lists in her USA Football article.

When you listen to the comments of your fans, you want them to be a good example of good sportsmanship. How they act effects the way onlookers think about you. You want to be the school with a great tennis team, not the school with the obnoxious fans.

  1. Common sense.

Some fans are out there yelling advice and tips when they don’t know how to play the sport. You want to make sure the advice you get is good advice. So you want your fans to only shout out common sense things when they yell from the sidelines.

What You Want to Hear from Yourself

Think about all the attitudes and statements you want and expect to hear from everyone around you. You want support, positivity, and criticism only if it is constructive. Right? Now think about this: everyone around you wants to hear the same things. So give it to them. Make sure everything you do and say on the court is what you would want to hear from others.