The man, the legend - Roger Federer has been playing elite tennis since before the smartphone was invented. But what can we learn from this hero of the sporting world, a man who has continued at the very highest level for so long?
There are lots of lessons to be learned from someone like that, and they’re not all about sports. His greatness can teach us a lot about our own lives and how we can be better.
Federer is not just a sportsperson, but a master - one of the best to ever do it. Read on to see what we can learn from that.
Don’t Be Afraid to Try Your Hand
Though he will be remembered as one of the greatest tennis players of all time, Federer started out playing loads of different sports, including badminton and basketball. Part of his genius ability in tennis comes from what is often called a ‘high sporting IQ’ - he’s able to quickly grasp and adapt to new activities. This, in turn, makes him better at everything.
Don’t be scared to take new opportunities, try new ideas, and make mistakes - this is how we all grow and develop as people.
Master Your Techniques
If you want to be good at something, you have to master a technique, a style, or a skill. Roger Federer is known as one of the most technically talented tennis players on the ATP tour - meaning he can outplay his opponents on skill, even if they are sometimes more powerful or fitter than he is.
It always pays to hone your craft. Whether it’s design, writing, sports, or even knitting, there will be techniques and tricks you can learn to make you better, faster, and more confident.
Use Your Experience Wisely
No tennis player alive, except maybe Serena Williams, has more experience of high-level sporting competition than Roger. When the going gets tough, he can draw on his experience to lift his play to the next level, time and time again.
Everyone has something they’re passionate about, that they understand like the back of their hand. You’ve got to use that experience in the best way possible. Don’t be afraid to be the cleverest, or the best prepared, person in the room.
Go the Distance
If you want to be great, you’ve got to do great things. Then you’ve got to keep doing them, day in and day out, for years until you become, like Federer, the absolute best. He turned professional in 1998, more than 20 years ago, and he’s been consistent throughout that time.
If you want to seal your name in the history books, or even just be the best version of yourself you can be, you've got work, work some more, and then work even harder.
Believe in Yourself
It sounds corny, but it’s true. Federer is sometimes criticized for being arrogant - but he just knows how good he is, and he continues to believe he can achieve what he wants to achieve, every time he steps onto the court.
Hold your head high, and believe you’ve got what it takes. It’s surprising how big a difference it makes.
We all get one life, and it’s our job to make the most of it and to look back happy that we did everything we could. A man like Roger Federer shows it is possible to be great, to be good (he’s given millions to charity), and to keep doing it for decades at a time.
We can all learn a whole lot from this truly incredible sporting hero.