This is transcribed from the following video:
Hey guys. I really hate saying Hey guys, on YouTube video intros. But Hey guys, here is a book review of what I think is the best tennis book. So, Winning Ugly by Brad Gilbert and Steve Jamison, with a new chapter by Andre Agassi. So really an easy book to read; it’s got three real main chapters.
Who is Brad Gilbert?
So, if you’re aware of Brad Gilbert at all, he’s a former pro player who admittedly has terrible strokes. He’s got to be pretty athletic to be a pro tennis player, but his claim to fame is beating some people that you probably shouldn’t have using leveraging the best possible tactics and finding ways to beat people.
So, yes anyway Brad is, he’s like a commentator now on a lot of, on a lot of the tennis stuff on like ESPN or whatever. But he’s kind of a controversial, kind of a weird guy, but reading the book, it reads a lot like he was on like one of those Jabbers or some like where he just takes voice to text. And then probably Steve Jamison cleaned it up with editing and made it easier to read. But it totally reads just like he talks, so you can kind of read this and Brad Gilbert’s voice, especially of course the stories and it is in that first-person tense.
The Three Most Informational Chapters
I think the three chapters in this book really are the early edge, playing smart and mind games. Sorry, I’ve got terrible handwriting, especially on a whiteboard. Early edge, it is probably the most informational. I think it’s mostly good for you know in NTRP beginner, 2.5 high beginners to even 4.5 or 5.O players. I think most 4.5 and 5.0 players won’t get a whole lot out of it, but it is a good reminder for things like coming prepared with two freshly strung rackets and have the water on court. Bring your towel, bring your shoes, and just be prepared for the match.
I know I suffer from some of that. It’s a little bit, I’ll be lazy or something. Show up to a practice match with [inaudible 03:01] old rackets, break a string and play with the racket. Not as dialed in, so it’s good to always be ready for the match. I think that’s probably one of the better reminders in the book. You know, playing smart of course for me is huge to think about playing odds. Yes, you may get smoked by certain shots from the guy, or girl but you know, if it’s a lower percentage shot, you want them to keep going for it really. If you win six times and they lose four times, you’re going to win the match. The idea is, you know, playing odds, playing within your abilities, and kept focusing on a little bit on the score.
Who Is Doing What To Whom?
And then he, Brad in the book talks about thinking about who is doing what to whom. So, if you’re the one, are you dictating the ball against them? So are you hitting inside out forehands to their backhands in creating the point, the winning points. Or are they doing that to you in it. If you’re aware of what’s happening in the match, then you can make the adjustment and play smart. Absolutely a good takeaway from the book. Something that anybody at any level can use. The, you know the mind games, part two also really interesting. He talks about, I think it’s seven hidden add points. Basically, a hidden add point is anything that is that 30 well, 30, 15, 30, 30, all 30, 40. Can you 30 point. So, the goal is that like a, of 30. Yeah, it’s not an ad point, like, right it’s not a game point or a great point, but it’s one away from it.
So that point actually sets you up for that, that game point or break point. And so, you wouldn’t lock it down on those points, play conservative, but hit your shots and just have bigger targets and way be more patient on those points and focus. I tried that actually last week in a match, because it’s something that I don’t inherently do. I really focus more on like 30 all, but 1530, low 30. I started trying to focus more on those. And really, I think it does make a difference there in some of the games. It seemed like you know, if you just stay in that and you can maybe get an opportunity to get lucky on some shots too. But I thought that was a pretty good takeaway from the book.
I Think Winning Ugly Is The Best Tennis Book
This is a book that too, he puts a lot of anecdotes in and he tells a lot of stories from his pro playing days. And I mean, that’s almost like half of the book or probably more than half of the book is him talking about some match he played professionally. And I don’t know, I think for me, those were really like the less important parts of the book. I think that yes, you can read this book and take away something, no matter what level you are. I think it’s also a book that’s worth reading multiple times. I reread this one probably three or four times and I take away something each time. It’s just a great little resource, I mean, if you’re thinking about buying a tennis course, probably buy this book first. Don’t just sign up for an expensive course. This is a cheap resource that you can take away and improve your game in some ways, probably.
So, yes really cool picture of Brad Gilbert on here too, if you feel like that nineties style like I do you know. Go ahead and buy the book, I’ve got the link down on Amazon. If you guys like some book reviews, I was thinking about doing them, The Inner Game of Tennis. I got the book but if you want me to do another review on Inner game of tennis, let me know in the comments. But yet also if you’ve read this book, I’d be curious to know what you guys thought too. So, feel free to comment, subscribe if you want. Like it, if you liked it, dislike it if you disliked it. Appreciate you guys watching this far.