John Friends: Regular progress results in success | 31 March, 2023 | All Information | Information and Options | Information and Occasions

In our ‘Coaching ideas’ collection, John Friends explains why specializing in one percenters is the important thing to long-term enchancment.

Melbourne, Australia , 31 March 2023 | Leigh Rogers

John Friends is a two-time Grand Slam doubles champion, an Olympic bronze medallist and has been ranked as excessive as world No.2 in males’s doubles.

The 34-year-old Australian, who grew up in Melbourne and is now primarily based in Perth, has reached such glittering heights by way of laborious work and dedication.

Friends, additionally a proud Australian Davis Cup consultant, displays on his largest practice-court classes in our Coaching Suggestions collection …

What time of day do you like to observe?

I’m usually a little bit of an early chicken, so I wish to stand up and observe within the morning. Throughout coaching weeks, I’m often out beginning by 7.30am.

Do you observe on daily basis?

I observe six out of seven days. I give myself sooner or later off per week and grind the remainder of it. Having a time without work helps to clean up each the physique and thoughts. It’s good to have the ability to chill out and recharge to go once more.

How do you get essentially the most from a observe session?

By ensuring issues are aggressive. You may get a bit stale at occasions however making the observe aggressive lets you have extra enjoyable. It doesn’t actually matter what you’re engaged on on the time, discovering methods to invent video games or make it as near match play helps you take pleasure in it extra.

Is there part of your recreation you least take pleasure in practising?

Probably not, you simply need to get to work and get on with all of it.

In doubles, is it all the time essential to observe along with your accomplice?

There are durations of time the place you’ve obtained to do lots collectively, however when you get the dangle of what one another desires to do at sure moments, then you definately’ve obtained to return and get the work carried out that it’s essential to do. Bettering your personal recreation additionally helps the staff. On the finish of the day, you’ve obtained to know what the staff targets and aims are so that you just don’t depart any holes on the market. Generally you’ll be able to go lengthy durations of not taking part in or coaching collectively after which come again and gel immediately, so long as you understand what one another desires to do.

Do you keep in mind the primary skilled participant you had the chance to observe with?

Probably not, it’s a couple of years in the past now. I used to be fortunate sufficient to be a hitting accomplice on the Australian Open after I was ending juniors, so I obtained the prospect to hit with many alternative gamers again within the day. I additionally did that after I was taking part in US school tennis, as I’d all the time be again residence across the Aussie Open. It was all the time a incredible time to be in and across the match and see what it was all about.

Do any observe periods from that point stand out as most memorable?

Some of the thrilling was with Rafa (Nadal), which was quite a lot of enjoyable. That was when he was beginning out.

Is there anybody on tour that you just haven’t practiced with but, however would love the chance to take action?

The one one I’ve actually missed out on is Roger (Federer). All the opposite guys I’ve performed towards or practiced with, you get to know all the fellows whenever you’re travelling week in and week out with them.

Who’s your favorite participant to observe with?

It’s all the time nice enjoyable to get on courtroom with Lleyton (Hewitt), particularly when he was nonetheless taking part in. He was unreal to observe with. His power and pleasure ranges made each observe session unreal.

Had been you nervous earlier than your first hit with Lleyton?

Oh 100 per cent. Everybody all the time is. Once you first get on the market, he hits this ball that zings in so low, so you actually need to be prepared for it. He’s a real champion and all the time nice to get on courtroom with.

Do you’ve any common or favorite observe companions on tour?

The Aussies actually stick collectively and assist one another out. We work laborious and it brings all of us up collectively. We’re usually a good distance from residence all year long, so that you’ve obtained to stay collectively and ensure everyone seems to be there for one another. I obtained to observe with Ash (Barty) a pair occasions at Wimbledon, after I was taking part in blended together with her, which was all the time nice enjoyable.

What recommendation would you give an aspiring participant to get essentially the most from a observe session?

It doesn’t matter how lengthy you’re on the market for, simply attempt to get one per cent higher each single day. Over an extended course of time, that one per cent will continue to grow and rising should you simply preserve engaged on the little issues.

Are there any observe classes you would like you realized earlier in your personal profession?

Probably not, I used to be fortunate sufficient to have some good coaches rising up and was capable of try to work on these one percenters early. On the finish of the day, you’ve obtained to stay with what you’re doing and revel in it. Half the battle is simply staying within the recreation lengthy sufficient.

Lastly, should you had 5 minutes left in a observe session and will do something you would like, what would you select to do?

For me, it’s all the time a reflex volley drill.

Learn extra in our Coaching Suggestions collection:
> Jaimee Fourlis
> Priscilla Hon
> Max Purcell
> Aleksandar Vukic

Guide on-line, play immediately: Go to to get out on courtroom and have some enjoyable! 

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