This month we talk to Gustavo Granitto, a tennis and sports coach with over four decades’ experience in developing players from beginners to ATP & WTA level. Gus’s work also involves educating and coaching coaches, parents and administrators. He is also Red2Blue Certified Advanced Coach. Here, he talks to us about how he integrates Red2Blue into his programmes.
Tell us what you do and how you discovered Red2Blue
I’ve worked full time for the International Tennis Federation (ITF) for many years, and I now run its GTC Tennis Academy and Consultancy based in Miami. I also coach and educate coaches, parents, and administrators. My career has taken me all over the world presenting to international audiences.
I’m co-founder of The Sport Culture (TSC), which offers consulting and support services related to sports and successful performance under pressure. I discovered Red2Blue four years ago through a friend of mine who used to work for Xerox.
When I was in Wimbledon in 2019, I met Gazing’s Ian Cochrane, who told me all about the contents and benefits of Red2Blue. The programme felt like a great fit with what I was doing in my own business, and since then, I’ve been working closely with Martin, Bede and Alejandro.
What’s been the toughest moment of your career?
Many years ago, I was traveling for the ITF when I narrowly missed being in a plane crash. I had the opportunity to take a flight that was leaving a few minutes earlier than the flight I had a boarding pass for. It turned out that the flight I was originally scheduled on was in a tragic accident. Being blessed and attentive in looking to return home as soon as possible saved me. When I started using Red2Blue and saw the importance of attention again, it reminded me of that situation.
Are there any moments you look back upon now and wish you’d had a knowledge of Red2Blue to draw upon?
Certainly! The Control Circles that allow us to recognize, accept and choose, added to training our attention to where it is needed, would have undoubtedly helped the players I’ve coached over the years to get closer to or achieve their goals more quickly. Now that we’ve started incorporating the Red2Blue techniques into our own coaching programmes, the results speak for themselves.
Can you expand upon that a little – how does Red2Blue fit into your work at GTC Tennis Academy?
We’ve always integrated mindset into our programmes at GTC. The Red2Blue programmes are a great fit with the programmes we offer across sport, the tennis industry and with corporate clients. Once specific example of how we use Red2Blue is to increase the attention level of children and young people during training.
For professional sportspeople, we use it to improve their decision-making process when they find themselves in a high-pressure moment during a match and they need to stay focused. When we’re consulting for organisations and academies, we use Red2Blue to achieve a common language for the objectives they are pursuing.
Gus with Genaro Olivieri, ATP player 3rd round in Roland Garros 2023
What’s the biggest driver for success in the players you’ve coached?
I’ve had the privilege of training many very talented players. But players who have achieved their goals showed a sustained mentality focused on systematically giving their maximum effort every day.
What’s the best piece of advice anyone’s ever given you?
I’ve received lots of good advice over the years but the piece of advice that has stuck with me permanently is to keep focused on what you do best and to enjoy the challenging situations.
Is there one piece of advice you give to the people you coach?
I always advise people that mindset is a skill, not a limiting factor. Red2Blue helps people to understand that mindset is not a problem to be solved, but a skill that can be learned and developed.
Who’s your favourite tennis player of all time, and why?
The Argentine player Guillermo Vilas for what he did for his country. Nowadays, I enjoy everything Novak Djokovic does for the sport. His mindset is incredible, with no limit. I remember an enjoyable experience with my junior players and him during the 2007 US Open – and now he is the Greatest Of All Time!
Thoughts on Wimbledon this year?
Wimbledon is the tournament! Unique, challenging to sustain both physically and mentally for two weeks. The Next Generation is right there with many chances. However, I’d have been happy to see Novak Djokovic make it again.
You can find out more about Gus’s work at GTC here.