Wisdom//

This Stress-Relieving Mantra Helped a 15-Year-Old Beat Venus Williams at Wimbledon

Cori Gauff used a mental trick made famous by the movie Hoosiers.

Courtesy of TPN / Getty Images
Courtesy of TPN / Getty Images

Venus Williams and Serena Williams are still the faces of American tennis, but the future of the sport might be 15-year-old Cori “Coco” Gauff, who grew up idolizing the sisters.

During the opening round of Wimbledon on Monday, Gauff upset Venus Williams, who was 24 and already a 2-time Wimbledon champ when Gauff was born.

After the win, Gauff was asked how she was able to remain so calm and composed during the biggest match of her career so far. Gauff cited a mental trick for underdogs made famous by the fictional high school basketball coach Norman Dale in the movie “Hoosiers.”

“I’ve never played on a court so big,” Gauff said. “I had to remind myself that the lines on the court are the same size. Everything around it might be bigger, but the lines are the same. After every point, I was just telling myself to stay calm.”

In “Hoosiers,” Dale’s team from tiny Hickory, Indiana reached the state championship game where they would face a squad from a much larger school in an Indianapolis gym much bigger than anything they had ever played in before.

When the team first arrives in Indianapolis, Dale takes them to the arena and, using a tape measure, shows the small-town players that the basket is the same height, and the lines are the same distance as their tiny gym back in Hickory.

Hickory went on to win the state championship.

Gauff might not be ready to win Wimbledon, but she’s got the right attitude, and it already helped her upset one of the best tennis players of all time.

Originally published on Business Insider.

More from Business Insider:

Alexis Ohanian has taken out billboards for wife Serena Williams, but he says a simple Sunday morning ritual means more to their relationship

An organizational psychologist has a sneaky job-interview question to figure out what it’s really like to work somewhere

Melinda Gates has some great advice on how working parents can reduce stress

Follow us here and subscribe here for all the latest news on how you can keep Thriving.

Stay up to date or catch-up on all our podcasts with Arianna Huffington here.

Share your comments below. Please read our commenting guidelines before posting. If you have a concern about a comment, report it here.

You might also like...

Community//

Camp Counselor to Orthopaedic Surgeon: Amazing Preparation

by Jennifer Weiss
Community//

Do Athletes Make Great Entrepreneurs, Leaders and People?

by Nunzio Presta
Community//

How to Survive a Toxic Workplace

by Niels

Sign up for the Thrive Global newsletter

Will be used in accordance with our privacy policy.

Thrive Global
People look for retreats for themselves, in the country, by the coast, or in the hills . . . There is nowhere that a person can find a more peaceful and trouble-free retreat than in his own mind. . . . So constantly give yourself this retreat, and renew yourself.

- MARCUS AURELIUS

We use cookies on our site to give you the best experience possible. By continuing to browse the site, you agree to this use. For more information on how we use cookies, see our Privacy Policy.