'Not Slave To Habits': Djokovic Explains 'Extreme Importance' Of Having Some

'Not Slave To Habits': Djokovic Explains 'Extreme Importance' Of Having Some

by Zachary Wimer

Like most athletes, tennis players have habits, but Novak Djokovic refuses to be a slave to his habits.

We've heard about many habits and rituals from professional athletes over the years. Rafael Nadal is probably the most famous tennis player, but he has very rigid habits regarding his matches.

His water bottle placement has become both a meme and a source of fascination for many. He's not the only one, as many other players have certain habits and rituals that they do before or during matches.

Djokovic has his own, but when talking to Serbian media at the 2024 Australian Open, the 24-time Grand Slam champion confirmed that he's not a slave to them, and that's a pretty important distinction to make.

"I have to correct you, because there is a difference. I am not a slave to habits, but they can be extremely important – I do have them and I respect them. Superstition is something else, I don’t have superstitions, though sometimes I like to use the same shower in the locker room. It’s not that I think, ‘Oh, no, I am going to lose if it’s not that shower’, it’s not a problem for me if it’s occupied."

Some players like to pump themselves up with music, for example. Carlos Alcaraz famously said that he listens to Rocky music before going on the court, but Djokovic laughed it off, explaining that it's not really his style.

"I do like Rocky, but it’s not my style to maybe look at myself in the mirror, pumping myself up with ‘Eye of the Tiger’. I don’t need that. I feel like I am full of everything inside as it is, it seems like I am about to explode, so I need something to calm me down a bit. That’s why I prefer classical music (before the match). I would explode if I listened to Rocky then."

It's worked so far. He's never reached the semi-final of the Australian Open without winning it, and he's taking on Jannik Sinner in the semi-final.


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