Put it into practice: Controlling the speed with Nick Matthew

4th January 2021

We’re delighted to be able to bring in the New Year with one of the greats of the game, as 3x World Champion and triple Commonwealth Gold Medallist Nick Matthew joins us for our latest SquashSkills playlist!

One of the finest English players of all time, Nick had a hugely successful career spent at the very top of the game. Now working as a highly successful coach from his base in Sheffield, he’s put together for us an exclusive playlist focused on controlling the speed of the game.

The higher the level you play, the faster the pace of the game can become. One of the key themes of this playlist surrounds what it is you need to do to be the one dictating the pace of the game, rather than always be reacting to your opponent’s tempo. This requires a more cerebral, tactical approach, as well as an understanding of the main technical considerations that Nick also delves into.

Speed control is a very important part of the game and is something that is frequently more evident at the elite level – watching two high-level players going back and forth in a tactical battle, you’ll very often see them wrestling for that key control of the pace. Nick himself was a master of this strategic element, so is the perfect man to take us through the what, why, where, and how of this crucial aspect of the game.

By becoming better able to control the speed, you’ll be better able to adapt more quickly to different circumstances and conditions that occur on court, giving yourself the best possible chance to take advantage of any situation that you’re faced with during the course of a match. As your level improves, these small fluctuations become all the more vital in determining the outcome of the game.

The aim of this blog is to introduce Nick’s video series, along with the related solo and pairs sessions that we’ve created to help you put it into practice. We’ve also included links to some of the other content we have here on the site on similar topics, to help you gain a more comprehensive understanding of the whole concept of controlling speed. Watch through the videos from the playlist and then click through the links to the sessions below to check them out, and discover the benefits of improving your ability to successfully control the speed and tempo of a game.


Put it into practice

boastSolo Session

This solo session is designed to get you started off with some of the basic fundamentals of controlling the speed of the game.


Pairs Session

This pairs session works through a series of drills where you can practice your skills within a more natural rally environment, and begin developing the ability to control the speed of the game within a more realistic matchplay context.

Fitness Session

Developing the speed of your movement will help when you’re trying to increase the pace of a rally. Try out this great speed session created by SquashSkills Fitness Director Gary Nisbet.


Related content

The importance of speed for squash players with Hadrian Stiff

In this series Hadrian Stiff discusses speed with Jethro Binns, expanding on types of speed within the game and how to utilise it.


Speed and Agility for squash players with Gary Nisbet

Gary Nisbet explains what speed is, how to train it, specific drills and analyses how professional players use it to attack and defend.


Let us know how you get on with the sessions, we’d love to hear your feedback!

Haven't seen the full series yet?

In this series, 3-time world champion Nick Matthew gives his analysis of how to control the speed of a game!

Watch now