"The circuit is a meat chopper”
The new physical trainer of David Nalbandian, former of Coria, Jorge Trevisan explains from inside how tennis destroys tennis players themselves.
At the same time than Gaudio, Zabaleta and Cañas were playing the finals in the last weeks, the Argentinian top ten were resting and starting all over again. A thing that we hear all the time nowadays are the injuries, and that’s making some damage: Guillermo Coria didn’t defend his titles in Stuttgart nor Kitzbühel (Sopot changed the date); David Nalbandian had to withdrew from Wimbledon. Rosarino, 57 years old (27 of which spent working in the rugby Jockey Club, and also traveled with Alberto Mancini), Jorge Trevisan is the new Physical Trainer of Nalbandian, and worked during 2003 with Coria. Here he describes some similarities and differences between both of them and explains why the circuit is the big responsible here.
—You worked with both top ten. How would you define them?
—They’re both very fast. David has a muscular development superior and is taller, and Guille is light and he’s very fast to go from one place to another. They’re styles of playing are different. Guille is the best competitor that exists in tennis. It’s unbelievable how he creates spaces…I met David now and I can say that we’ll have good results in the hard courts, that he likes so much. What do they need? Maturity in the physical part, gaining more work. That’s it.
—In the last years, the figure of the PT grew because of the importance of the physical part in tennis. How are they with the physical work dedication?
—Look, no one likes to work on their physic. Mercedes Paz was the only one that loved doing it. With Mancini we were together for 15 years, I traveled with him and they told me I was insane; now everyone travels with their PT. These kids are hard workers and dedicate a lot of time to it. They want to be good for real, they are aware of their potential. They’re two little monsters, that if the circuit gets better they will last.
—In the last two years they were victims of several injuries. What are the reasons?
—Look, tennis is an important business, it moves a lot of money. The circuit is hard, and ends up being a meat chopper. I’ll tell you a day of David, like when he played Kuerten in Roland Garros: he trained in the morning, we stretched, he played for 3h20, we stretched again, made some interviews, massages for an hour and treated his wrist with ultrasound. It takes a lot out of the physic and of your head too. Besides, you don’t have to forget that tennis alters your adolescence, you miss parties with your friends, moments with their family, they miss home. Then I listen to the football players complaining that they have to play two matches per week…Here are 8 hours of daily work, and the player is just one, there’s replacement.
—What’s the solution?
—I don’t know how to modify the sport, but I know that we don’t have to ruin these kids. If you enter the medical room of the tournaments, there are a lot of players being treated. If they stop for 6 months, they recover from everything, but here you never stop.
—Coria was talking about choosing better the tournaments...
—Well, that’s why Federer and Roddick don’t get injured: they don’t play as much. They try to maximize and play less tournaments, build the calendar in a more intelligent way. Then the Davis arrives, they get injured and there’s people that ask them how is it that they don’t take care of themselves. The player is exhausted! I assure you: the main concern of any coach nowadays, is try to avoid injuries.