Some of Europe's most famous tennis courts are currently covered in snow, from Roland Garros to Wimbledon to Monte Carlo.
It's March. It's not supposed to be like this: It's freezing out, the snow is falling and unless you've got access to a cosy indoor court, there's not much chance you'll be playing again until this cold snap melts away.
So what can you do in the meantime? How can you improve your tennis and develop your game while the weather is bad?
Here are a few drills and ideas for when it's too cold or wet out.
it's a simple drill, but often those are the ones that provide the foundation to help you reach the next level. We'ret talking about wall volleys.
Nothing too complicated here. Just find a blank wall in your house with enough room for you to safely volley against it
Keep your racket head up and return it to the ready position after each volley. And see if you can keep going for minutes at a time without losing control of the ball.
Not only does this kind of drill improve your reaction times. It also helps your practice keeping the wrist stiff and firm as you hit each volley. This simple drill is great to do on your own or with a partner. Volley to each other or take in in turns seeing how long you can go against the wall for.
Shadowing is something that all players do. It's a timeless exercise for a reason. It's a simple way to practice your technique without using a ball.
The best way to do it is to stand in front of a mirror with your racket. Go through your repertoire of shots, footwork and all. With the help of the mirror, you can see if you are performing each shot correctly.
Keep an eye out for the stance you take for each shot, the extension of the arm on contact, the wrist movement to create the topspin, the follow through, and the weight transferring forwards with the back hip moving forward. Your back leg should come forwards after the contact and land in front of you. Then use that foot to push off to the recovery position.
Of course, this is all done without the ball, so it take s a bit of imagination! Try repeating it 50 times or so. When any shot is performed this amount of times - even without the ball - all of those tiny technical details make their way into your muscle memory.
The result? When it comes down to it in a real match, your technique won't let you down.
Even the professional players struggle with their ball toss sometimes, even though it's vital to making sure your serve is on point and consistent. Having confidence in your toss will mean that even under pressure or in windy conditions, you're less affected than your opponent.
Luckily, this is something you can practice indoors even when the weather is bad outside.
Start by putting the racket down in front of your front foot. Then, go to play the serve but instead of hitting the ball let it bounce. All you have to do is try and get the ball to bounce on the racket. We have to get the ball to land on the racket 20 times.
Over time this drill will help you get the ball toss in the right place more regularly.
One final thing
The final thing you can do is just watch some tennis. Some of the best matches of all time are readily available on Youtube. Going through some classic highlights is a great way to find inspiration and better understand the tactical side of the game.
The Wimbledon final of 2008 between Roger Federer and Rafa Nadal is just one example.
Alternatively, Indian Wells and the Miami Open are to come later this month, so try and catch some of the action!
All of that should keep you busy until the sun starts shining again!