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View Full Version : Compact or big loopy back swing for forehand?


Golden Retriever
08-25-2004, 06:49 AM
Correct me if I am wrong, I think Agassi has the most compact forehand back swing with Roger Federer a close second. On the other end of the spectrum you have the like of Carlos Moya with big loopy back swing. How does Agassi generate such power with such a compact back swing? Which one do you prefer and why?

Camilio Pascual
08-25-2004, 08:33 AM
Andre did this by hitting on the rise, while the ball has more pace. A long swing wasn't needed, actually a short, controllable swing was needed for the more difficult timing of hitting on the rise. I have a great big gigantic loopy backswing on clay. I feel the loopy swing helps me time the stroke better and the slower play of clay added to that allows me the time to accelerate less hard to get the same racquet velocity at contact. That helps my aging muscles and joints. I have a small loop on fast courts and no loop with a straight takeback when playing against a big hitter on fast courts.

TennsDog
08-25-2004, 09:07 AM
I play with a hitch in both my forehand and backhand, creating a rather short backswing on both sides. I use a short backswing on my forehand for a few reasons. One is that is all I need to generate plenty of power. If I took a long backswing I would be hitting the ball too hard. Similarly, I would lose control because I have a fast swing speed with a lot of wrist movement and racket head acceleration. The short backswing helps me time the foreward swing and wrist movement together to make clean contact (usually). I don't think I would be able to get as much topspin if I hit with a long backswing. It just seems like it would be too awkward. A short takeback also helps in making little adjustments, say to a weird bounce, changing positioning of opponent, or to change from a drive to a drop shot.

vin
08-25-2004, 01:10 PM
The majority of power in a forehand comes from the body and racquet rotating as a unit, then the racquet rotating from the upper arm independently of the rest of the body, and then pushing through the ball. You may be surprised by how it's possible to generate the majority of your pace without any backswing at all. If you join easitennis.com, you will learn plenty about this.

I think it is within this area of the swing that a good forehand is made. Aggassi's backswing, although smaller than some, provides plenty of time to allow the racquet to gradually buld up momentum before the events described above. I think larger backswings are a matter of timing, preference, and/or compensation.

Based on the logic above, I prefer to have a simple backswing like Aggassi's. To be honest, I don't focus much on it anymore. I focus mostly on key fundamentals more involved with contact and try to incorporate the backswing that makes executing these fundamentals the easiest.

James Brown
08-25-2004, 01:15 PM
whatever feels right/comfortable for the player as long as it doesnt interfere with his stroke is whats right for you.

jun
08-25-2004, 08:27 PM
Once you reach 4.0 and start playing with people who can hit pretty hard with a lot of spin, or who can take time away from you by taking the ball early, you will struggle a lot with long loopy backswing. So I would suggest tightnen that backswing a little bit. With more compact swing, there are less things to go wrong.

Many pros look like they have a big backswing, but up close in person, these backswings are still in reason and not as big.

Mind you compact swing doesn't necessarily mean you have to take the racket straightback. You can still make a small loop. Also with smaller backswing, you might have to concentrate on accelerating through the contact zone a bit more.

Golden Retriever
08-25-2004, 08:53 PM
Andre did this by hitting on the rise, while the ball has more pace. A long swing wasn't needed, actually a short, controllable swing was needed for the more difficult timing of hitting on the rise. I have a great big gigantic loopy backswing on clay. I feel the loopy swing helps me time the stroke better and the slower play of clay added to that allows me the time to accelerate less hard to get the same racquet velocity at contact. That helps my aging muscles and joints. I have a small loop on fast courts and no loop with a straight takeback when playing against a big hitter on fast courts.
You have 3 backswings? If I were you I would average them out and go with the small loop.

Camilio Pascual
08-26-2004, 04:34 AM
Yes. My normal backswing is the small loop. I can get pressured into losing that loop by not having time on a fast court by a hard hitter. I'm a big believer in adaptability of one's game to improve results in different conditions.

Rickson
12-14-2005, 07:53 AM
Correct me if I am wrong, I think Agassi has the most compact forehand back swing with Roger Federer a close second.
Allow me to correct you. Roger Federer has a fairly big takeback on most of his forehands, but he will go compact on occasion (serve returns, on the rise). Watch Roger again and you'll see that on most of his forehands, his takeback is nowhere near as compact as Andre's short takeback.

Geezer Guy
12-14-2005, 08:42 AM
I used to have a big loopy backhand that worked pretty well most of the time.

When I was at Newk's a couple of months ago they noticed that I'm occasionally late - especially hitting against a big hitter who hits pretty flat, or when my opponent is at the net. They changed my big loop to a little loop (they called it going from a capital C to a little c), and that little change really helped a lot.

Took a bit of getting used to for sure, but I now feel I have much more time when setting up my forehand shots.

And, for what it's worth, the change in loop-size didn't effect my power or topspin at all - at least, not that I can tell. I still hit with good power and lots of topspin. I'd say that the 2nd half of my stroke is just the same as before. The difference is that the 1st half starts lower (about shoulder-height, instead of above-my-head-height) and I keep my elbow tucked in more than before.