"The zone" has been described by many as a state of being in which you see the tennis ball slower than usual and sometimes it's size magnified.
Many of us experience this when least expected.
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Without getting too deeply into explaining it, it is basically getting out of your mind, shutting it off.
How you do that? Well, by focusing on the task at hand and being completely in the present time. For some, it is a common occurrence. For many others, a difficult task.
Once in the zone, how do you stay in it? Here are some guidelines that you could use:
1. You need alignment of your efforts. If you use poor technique, you'll be out of the Zone in a minute.
2. You need awareness of this state and respect it, that is not to shuffle your focus around.
3. You needed calmness, serenity. Emotions produce endocrine responses. Anger, for example, causes surge of responses that will throw your concentration off.
4. Things will happen that may look miraculous. You are creating at a higher level. You have to trust yourself.
5. Feel is key, your feedback, knowing what to do. Enhance this perception. Trust it, too.
6. Stay calm. Don't rush. Be a master of patience, especially with yourself.
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It's very interesting how some players are in furious action and still remain observers themselves.
There are numerous examples in sports, the likes of Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, Jerry Rice, Roger Federer, Lionel Messi, Tiger Woods at his best, and hundreds if not thousands more. Their performance can be astounding and the performer still look at ease.
Asked about it, they simply say, "I was in the zone."
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