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PushyPushster
03-23-2007, 10:26 AM
I just had a horrible singles match where I was out-pushed at my own game. The first set started fine and I won easily; the guy was yelling at himself which is music to my ears. Then, halfway through the second set, my opponent completely changes his gameplan and starts pushing the ball right back at me. That's no problem - Boredom is my secret weapon. If I have to win a 3 hour match using the tennis equivalent of Chinese water torture that's cool with me. This guy just won't mentally break, though. Long story short, he eeks out the win in the second set and crushes me in the third because he had the better strokes and wouldn't get impatient. I was so depressed I actually called up the local tennis center and inquired about lessons. Is this what it's come to? I've played tennis for years without knowing the proper way to hit a ball and it doesn't seem right to start now. I'm having a real crisis of confidence. Someone help a brother out.

grimmbomb21
03-23-2007, 10:33 AM
duth justice be served....PUSHER!!!

Swissv2
03-23-2007, 10:37 AM
Your wily pushing ways have been thwarted! muahahahhaha, :p (pblhhhh)

Ripper
03-23-2007, 10:48 AM
This is a joke, right?

Doc Hollidae
03-23-2007, 10:57 AM
I've done it before. I got so frustrated after losing the first set that I decided I was going to start pushing back. I hit lobs off returns for no reason, hit moonballs, lob volleys, etc. ****ed the guy off completely. Nothing is more entertaining than getting a pusher to tell you to stop pushing. All I could think was, "Now you know the hell that I have to go through." Only problem is that pushing just isn't my game so I end up making more unforced errors trying to be a jerk and counter pushing, than just playing my normal game.

soyizgood
03-23-2007, 11:00 AM
I have no sympathy for pushers. You people only hit in a way that keeps the points alive, yet refuse to challenge yourself to evolve and take it up another level. Pushers have frustrated many beginners and intermediates with their stagnant form of play.

Seeing that most of the recreational players in my area are pushers or testosterone-driven folks spraying the court and net, I get a smile when players use their mind and skill to overcome such menacing species of players.

My best friend is a pusher and even though I usually win, I'm still learning new skills and improving my play for other challenges. He told me my style is funner, so I know he's envious. He can and does improve from playing and watching me, but I strive for greatness and work my butt off to achieve that.

If you want to just be the king of the 3.0 realm, keep doing your thing. But pushers have a ceiling on what they can do as they only care about staying alive and hoping for opponent UEs. I'd say take a recreational class and learn how to use a full stroke. As well as serving faster than 35MPH. Good luck, pusher...you'll need it

PushyPushster
03-23-2007, 11:59 AM
I don't feel a lot of love in the air.

This is a joke, right?

Sadly, no.


I've done it before. I got so frustrated after losing the first set that I decided I was going to start pushing back. I hit lobs off returns for no reason, hit moonballs, lob volleys, etc.


I've had it tried against me before, but never successfully. I have fun hitting it from the baseline and don't mind doing it all day. It's not like it stresses me out, or anything. Others seem to break after twelve or fifteen balls float over the net. This guy sure didn't, though.


I have no sympathy for pushers. You people only hit in a way that keeps the points alive, yet refuse to challenge yourself to evolve and take it up another level.


How many levels do you want to "take it up"? Let's face it, none of us is going to be Roger Federer, so if you're having fun does it really matter if it's at 3.5, 4.0, 4.5 (or whatever)? Oddly enough, due to the weakness of the division I'm playing in - non USTA -, I'm probably going to get bumped to 4.0- at the end of this season. I don't belong there, but I guess according to your criteria I'm "moving on up" and therefore doing great.


I'd say take a recreational class and learn how to use a full stroke. As well as serving faster then 35MPH.


Yeah, that's me. I play a game called "How long is it going to take you to move three feet inside the baseline?" when I start a match. Almost nobody does it on the first service. It's like they think the 30mph serve is a trick and I'm waiting to uncork an ace on them. There's still plenty that are staying back after the second time around. It's not until the third service that most are willing to accept that's really all there is. Oh well. Everyone has talents and serving has cetainly never been mine.

Cindysphinx
03-23-2007, 12:17 PM
I have no advice, but you gave me a good laugh! And I love your name.

I will profess my love for you right here and now, PushyPushster! :)

kevhen
03-23-2007, 12:27 PM
Some pushers do evolve. I know that I have and now have some wins over 4.5 rated guys in doubles but I started out as a 3.5 defensive pusher. So don't knock the guy that is better at keeping the ball in play than you are. Work on your own game instead of belittling the local pusher that you struggle with.

Kevo
03-23-2007, 12:27 PM
Hi Pushy. Let's face it. Once you get to 4.0 you're pretty much stuck. You won't find any pushers in 4.5. There aren't very many in 4.0 either. There may be some in doubles, but not many in singles. I used to get beat by pushers such as yourself, but at this point, I am a good 4.0 and I have no doubt at all that I will beat any pusher on any given day. So the question is, are you happy playing at the 3.5/4.0 level for the rest of your life. If you are, then there's nothing wrong with playing the game you want to play. If you'd like to move up to the higher levels, you'll need to learn some strokes.

Clive Walker
03-23-2007, 12:32 PM
1st time I've logged in here in months and funnily enough the top thread is one on pushing;)

Good to see nothing changes.

JRstriker12
03-23-2007, 12:38 PM
No sympathy for me. I think there's a special place in hell for pushers. ;)

kevhen
03-23-2007, 12:42 PM
It's funny how I never see any 4.5-5.0 guys on here complaining about pushers.

allcourter
03-23-2007, 12:44 PM
For those of you don't know what ZAT is; it is Zone Advancement Tournament, the lowest level of USTA sanction tournament. Once you got 65 pts than the next level is Championship level(another 65 pts.) and the last level is the Super Championship level which is the top level for 18 yrs and under. My daughter is in ZAT right now and she is in the upper 15% pack. These tournament are held once a month only.

To make the story short, there are a few top girls who have earned 64 pts. (1 point away from moving up to Championship level) and I am witnessing 1 of these girls for several months trying to earn that 1 pt. to move up but couldn't because her style as a pusher impeding her progress to move to upper ladder. Several of opponents who she had beaten before already moved to the next level except this girl. It's painful to watch her trying to earn that 1 point.

It used to be 64 points to move up to next level but because the upper levels so clogged up that recently they added 1 more point to make it much harder for everybody.

When I coach my children, pushing is not allowed because the style doesn't have any varieties and lack of weapons to help player to end matches in a timely manner. And these girls have to play an average of 3 matches a day. No one can last through that stretch by pushing the ball.

EZRA
03-24-2007, 04:23 AM
It's funny how I never see any 4.5-5.0 guys on here complaining about pushers.

It's cause they know how to handle pushers... and they actually love it. It's just a battle of consistency and 4.5+ players are consistent but with pace and depth and with deadly accuracy. Imagine a pusher trying to push against someone who can pull him from side to side throughout the whole match. The pusher would be very exhausted halfway through the first set... not to mention the frustration he'll have when the 4.5+ player crushes his 50-mph first serve. You'll see the pusher crying before the firts set is over.

A.Davidson
03-24-2007, 04:55 AM
While it is true that at higher levels, most players can adequately dispatch a "pusher" or "backboard", I don't think that they have reservations in hell or anything...It's a style, same as serve-and-volley or aggressive baselining.

migjam
03-24-2007, 07:00 AM
The guy won by playing smart. Too many times I see matches played where a player, who is losing, just sticks to their same routine and game, not taking into account what is going on in the match.

PushyPushster
03-26-2007, 03:23 AM
I will profess my love for you right here and now, PushyPushster!


Thanks, Cindy - the lone voice of sympathy in a forest of ridicule! :)

My confidence was somewhat restored by playing a basher this weekend who was trying to beat the cover off the ball. He was a young kid just out of college and was flying around the court and pasting everything he could get a racket on. He even measured the net before the game and cinched it down a couple of inches. Embarrassingly, when I rifled through my mental rolodex of tennis rules, "Net Height" was notably absent. I had to take his word for it. He was having trouble keeping the bouncy, fuzzy thing inside the court, though, so things worked out okay.

As for those saying I'm never going to have any luck beyond the 4.0 level - you're probably right. What can I say? I've got over six years of self-taught tennis to unlearn and if I tried to hit the ball the way I'm supposed to it would be like blowing my game apart with a piece of dynamite. I have a lot of fun playing on various tennis teams so that's a daunting prospect. Maybe I'll work on one stroke per season, or something.

haerdalis
03-26-2007, 03:40 AM
Pusher is the way to go. You cant ever get very far if you miss too much. Only thing is you dont have to be a club pusher. Just push a little harder and with more depth. Tennis is a game about movement.

Pleepers
03-26-2007, 06:26 AM
I just had a horrible singles match where I was out-pushed at my own game. The first set started fine and I won easily; the guy was yelling at himself which is music to my ears. Then, halfway through the second set, my opponent completely changes his gameplan and starts pushing the ball right back at me. That's no problem - Boredom is my secret weapon. If I have to win a 3 hour match using the tennis equivalent of Chinese water torture that's cool with me. This guy just won't mentally break, though. Long story short, he eeks out the win in the second set and crushes me in the third because he had the better strokes and wouldn't get impatient. I was so depressed I actually called up the local tennis center and inquired about lessons. Is this what it's come to? I've played tennis for years without knowing the proper way to hit a ball and it doesn't seem right to start now. I'm having a real crisis of confidence. Someone help a brother out.

Like you said in your last sentence; it sounds like a confidence issue not your strokes. Most pushers rarely have to encounter a fellow pusher, and when they do I think it is like two strange birds trying to decide who has the prettier feathers. You just had your feathers ruffled. Hopefully now you've had a taste of your own medicne and know why the rest of us hate playing people like you.

Kevo
03-26-2007, 06:57 AM
Maybe I'll work on one stroke per season, or something.

That's probably a good idea, but I wouldn't limit myself to one per season. I'd start with one particular shot and work on that until you feel comfortable enough to use it in the right situation in matches. My suggestion would be a topspin crosscourt forehand. Just work on that one shot during practice until you feel like you have control over it. Then when you get the right ball in a match play that shot. Once you've gotten that far, pick another shot.

So maybe one at a time is a good way to do it. I bet if you can succeed at pushing then you can probably manage more than one stroke per season. Just don't go for the massive overhaul.

Doc Hollidae
03-26-2007, 07:23 AM
It's funny how I never see any 4.5-5.0 guys on here complaining about pushers.

I've played against several at the 4.5 level. Frustrating as hell, but they don't go very far in tourneys.

TheGreatestAudia
03-26-2007, 07:37 AM
Thanks, Cindy - the lone voice of sympathy in a forest of ridicule! :)

My confidence was somewhat restored by playing a basher this weekend who was trying to beat the cover off the ball. He was a young kid just out of college and was flying around the court and pasting everything he could get a racket on. He even measured the net before the game and cinched it down a couple of inches. Embarrassingly, when I rifled through my mental rolodex of tennis rules, "Net Height" was notably absent. I had to take his word for it. He was having trouble keeping the bouncy, fuzzy thing inside the court, though, so things worked out okay.

As for those saying I'm never going to have any luck beyond the 4.0 level - you're probably right. What can I say? I've got over six years of self-taught tennis to unlearn and if I tried to hit the ball the way I'm supposed to it would be like blowing my game apart with a piece of dynamite. I have a lot of fun playing on various tennis teams so that's a daunting prospect. Maybe I'll work on one stroke per season, or something.

If my opponent ever checks the freakin' height of the net, I'm walking off the court. You have got to be kidding me. Are a few inches really going to throw you off that much?

PushyPushster
03-26-2007, 11:34 AM
If my opponent ever checks the freakin' height of the net, I'm walking off the court. You have got to be kidding me. Are a few inches really going to throw you off that much?


It actually made sense for this guy's game. He had a heater of a first serve and didn't take much off the second, either. What bothered me was that he didn't have a tape measure or anything. He stacked two rackets together and claimed that the end of the handle of the second was equal to 36", despite it looking noticeably lower than the other courts. This was a 'quick and dirty' method he saw on the tennis channel. I'm not real confrontational (read: wuss) so I just let it go. Maybe I'll bring a ruler to the courts from now on.

Toward the end of the first set, however, I hit one of my normal awful backhands and just clipped the top of the net. It crawled over the top like a dying mouse and expired on the other side. As we watched my "winner" dribble toward the alley I couldn't help but note, "If you'd cinched the net down a quarter-inch less I think you would have won that point." Heh.

TheGreatestAudia
03-26-2007, 11:43 AM
It actually made sense for this guy's game. He had a heater of a first serve and didn't take much off the second, either. What bothered me was that he didn't have a tape measure or anything. He stacked two rackets together and claimed that the end of the handle of the second was equal to 36", despite it looking noticeably lower than the other courts. This was a 'quick and dirty' method he saw on the tennis channel. I'm not real confrontational (read: wuss) so I just let it go. Maybe I'll bring a ruler to the courts from now on.

Toward the end of the first set, however, I hit one of my normal awful backhands and just clipped the top of the net. It crawled over the top like a dying mouse and expired on the other side. As we watched my "winner" dribble toward the alley I couldn't help but note, "If you'd cinched the net down a quarter-inch less I think you would have won that point." Heh.

"Quick and dirty" is absolutely correct. I have never heard of anyone doing this before but whatever. It's fitting that you would hit one of those, right? The ball...(and I guess the net as well)...never lies.

goober
03-26-2007, 11:44 AM
If my opponent ever checks the freakin' height of the net, I'm walking off the court. You have got to be kidding me. Are a few inches really going to throw you off that much?


Not crazy too check the height of the net especially if the net is obviously too high or too low. This occurs more commonly on public courts. A lot of flat ball hitters do get thrown off if the net is 2-3 inches too high.

tennisee
03-26-2007, 06:37 PM
I think Pushy needs a bit more love. One of the great things about tennis is that there is no rule saying "Before commencement of play, your opponent must first enquire what style of play you prefer and then spend the match feeding you balls that don't show up the deficiencies in your game."
If I'm playing a young guy with a huge forehand am I going to hit to it? (rhetorical question) Instead I might try feeding him a short piece of junk that has him scrabbling to the front of the court and then hitting his power shot way long because he didn't get his feet right. Or I might draw him in and see if he can volley, or see if he is consistent on the backhand. If I play a pusher I need to find a way to win, and with a pusher you'll have to be proactive. It's not like facing a kid with a Babolat who tries to belt 200mph shots every time, only 30% of which go in, where your game plan consists of standing there going "Oh, sorry mate - that was a bit long." A decent pusher will put the pressure on you to come up with the winners; it's a chance to improve your strategy and test your concentration.

TheGreatestAudia
03-27-2007, 04:33 AM
Not crazy too check the height of the net especially if the net is obviously too high or too low. This occurs more commonly on public courts. A lot of flat ball hitters do get thrown off if the net is 2-3 inches too high.

Give me a break. The pros are barely effected when it comes to 1-2 inches on the net. You would have to be a player that hits that close to the net all the time to be able to be thrown off so much as to check the net height. Obviously, goober, if the net is down around my ankles or up to my nips, I'm going to ratchet that thing to the normal height. Also, I understand if someone doesn't want to play with a net that doesn't have a middle strap pulling it down in the middle. That would drive me crazy but as far as an inch or two, no one is going to be able to notice that. They'll just think they are hitting too sharp or not enough arch.

goober
03-27-2007, 05:25 AM
Give me a break. The pros are barely effected when it comes to 1-2 inches on the net. You would have to be a player that hits that close to the net all the time to be able to be thrown off so much as to check the net height. Obviously, goober, if the net is down around my ankles or up to my nips, I'm going to ratchet that thing to the normal height. Also, I understand if someone doesn't want to play with a net that doesn't have a middle strap pulling it down in the middle. That would drive me crazy but as far as an inch or two, no one is going to be able to notice that. They'll just think they are hitting too sharp or not enough arch.

The pros ALWAYS play with the net at regulation height so I am not sure what your point is there. I bet that >95% of pros would notice if the net was 1-2 inches too high or too low. In fact they are much more likely to notice it than regular club players. I Have been to NBA games where the players noticed that the rim was a couple inches too low and the officials measured it and the players were right. I have been around a lot of players that can notice a net off by 1-2 inches. I don't know why you find that hard to believe unless you are only playing with low level recreational players.

Sure a wrong net height may not throw off your game, but to simply dismiss it as trivial is not right.

beernutz
03-27-2007, 05:49 AM
[QUOTE=TheGreatestAudia;1339416] Give me a break. The pros are barely effected when it comes to 1-2 inches on the net. {snip} [QUOTE]

And you know this how?

TheGreatestAudia
03-27-2007, 06:34 AM
The pros ALWAYS play with the net at regulation height so I am not sure what your point is there. I bet that >95% of pros would notice if the net was 1-2 inches too high or too low. In fact they are much more likely to notice it than regular club players. I Have been to NBA games where the players noticed that the rim was a couple inches too low and the officials measured it and the players were right. I have been around a lot of players that can notice a net off by 1-2 inches. I don't know why you find that hard to believe unless you are only playing with low level recreational players.

Sure a wrong net height may not throw off your game, but to simply dismiss it as trivial is not right.

Let me re-phrase, Goobs. By no one noticing, I meant the majority of us who do not play professionally and do not play for clubs. I said the pros wouldn't be effected by it as much as everyone else! They could play it and it wouldn't change much of their game, if at all. Granted, you might get one in a million pros who hits with such a flat stroke consistently and it might throw him/her off a bit but to say that it would cause everyone else to play worse is ridiculous. I'm not an idiot. Even I can tell if a rim is too high or too low. Judging a net is a little more difficult, IMO. As far as the "low level recreational" players comment, is 3.5-4.0 low level recreational? Or is that middle of the road? You tell me.

Beernutz, look at the quality of the pro game, they are not going to be effected by it because of their skill and control. My reasoning for saying that not as many people being effected is that not as many players as you think can hit the ball within 2-3 inches of the net consistantly with any kind of depth for prolonged periods of time, thus proving that many of us would not be effected by it anyway.

beernutz
03-27-2007, 07:51 AM
Let me re-phrase, Goobs. By no one noticing, I meant the majority of us who do not play professionally and do not play for clubs. I said the pros wouldn't be effected by it as much as everyone else! They could play it and it wouldn't change much of their game, if at all. Granted, you might get one in a million pros who hits with such a flat stroke consistently and it might throw him/her off a bit but to say that it would cause everyone else to play worse is ridiculous. I'm not an idiot. Even I can tell if a rim is too high or too low. Judging a net is a little more difficult, IMO. As far as the "low level recreational" players comment, is 3.5-4.0 low level recreational? Or is that middle of the road? You tell me.

Beernutz, look at the quality of the pro game, they are not going to be effected by it because of their skill and control. My reasoning for saying that not as many people being effected is that not as many players as you think can hit the ball within 2-3 inches of the net consistantly with any kind of depth for prolonged periods of time, thus proving that many of us would not be effected by it anyway.

I guarantee you that a pro is going to notice if the net is as little as 2 inches off. You don't play as long as they have to play to get where they are and not notice something like that. If they notice the difference, they are going to be affected if only psychologically, particularly if the net is 2 inches too high. I remember an Olympics where the officials set the women's gymnastics vault an inch too low and one of the gymnasts was seriously injured as a result. My point is that you don't practice hours and hours and hours and not notice and be affected by something that integral to the game or sport.

I hit a really flat serve and even as unskilled as I am compared to a pro I can tell when the net is too high. People who hit flat groundstrokes as opposed to big loopy topspin strokes are going to notice as well. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to see that if you are hitting the tape more than ususal either you are hitting lower than usual or the net is too high.

TheGreatestAudia
03-27-2007, 08:10 AM
I guarantee you that a pro is going to notice if the net is as little as 2 inches off. You don't play as long as they have to play to get where they are and not notice something like that. If they notice the difference, they are going to be affected if only psychologically, particularly if the net is 2 inches too high. I remember an Olympics where the officials set the women's gymnastics vault an inch too low and one of the gymnasts was seriously injured as a result. My point is that you don't practice hours and hours and hours and not notice and be affected by something that integral to the game or sport.

I hit a really flat serve and even as unskilled as I am compared to a pro I can tell when the net is too high. People who hit flat groundstrokes as opposed to big loopy topspin strokes are going to notice as well. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to see that if you are hitting the tape more than ususal either you are hitting lower than usual or the net is too high.

No it doesn't take a rocket scientist but the first thing 90% of us out there are going to blame it on is the fact we are just hitting too low. I guarantee that. My best serve is a hard flat one and if I'm hitting the tape constantly, it's because I need to hit the ball at just a tad higher than what I am doing. Being effected psychologically and being effected physically are two totally different things. I understand where you are going with the gymnast but it is a little different. She runs and jumps off of the same vault thousands and thousands of times. Being off by an inch can and will produce bad results. A net being off by just 1-2 inches is not going to have quite the same effect. Obviously, no one is jumping off the net so they are not going to get hurt but you don't hit the ball at the same level every time. If you're really, really good, your ball will stay around the 5-6 inches clearance pretty consistantly and that, my friend, is not going to entice many errors physically. Once again, the argument I was making was to say that pros wouldn't be effected, not that they wouldn't notice the net difference. I would even venture to say that some pros would still miss it. It's not an exact science. It's not something you look for commonly and if you're so focused on your opponent and strategy, you're not going to notice an inch difference either way. I promise.

beernutz
03-27-2007, 08:29 AM
No it doesn't take a rocket scientist but the first thing 90% of us out there are going to blame it on is the fact we are just hitting too low. I guarantee that. My best serve is a hard flat one and if I'm hitting the tape constantly, it's because I need to hit the ball at just a tad higher than what I am doing. Being effected psychologically and being effected physically are two totally different things. I understand where you are going with the gymnast but it is a little different. She runs and jumps off of the same vault thousands and thousands of times. Being off by an inch can and will produce bad results. A net being off by just 1-2 inches is not going to have quite the same effect. Obviously, no one is jumping off the net so they are not going to get hurt but you don't hit the ball at the same level every time. If you're really, really good, your ball will stay around the 5-6 inches clearance pretty consistantly and that, my friend, is not going to entice many errors physically. Once again, the argument I was making was to say that pros wouldn't be effected, not that they wouldn't notice the net difference. I would even venture to say that some pros would still miss it. It's not an exact science. It's not something you look for commonly and if you're so focused on your opponent and strategy, you're not going to notice an inch difference either way. I promise.

Well I promise you they would more than likely notice and that if they do notice, they will be affected.

How's that for an argument?

TheGreatestAudia
03-27-2007, 08:53 AM
Agree to disagree... for the most part. Deal?

beernutz
03-27-2007, 09:36 AM
Agree to disagree... for the most part. Deal?

Done.





10 characters

LoveThisGame
03-27-2007, 12:55 PM
Playing with the correct height of the net in higher level doubles is important. Besides serve aspects, there are two areas.

One comes when trying to chip so that the opponent has to return the shot up ... the old chip and dip. The other come when hitting hard low shots, which the lowness is important in making the shot a bit difficult to return. (I have no idea how, but a long time ago this hard, low shot became a key shot with decent probability for me.)

JHBKLYN
03-28-2007, 02:17 AM
The pros ALWAYS play with the net at regulation height so I am not sure what your point is there. I bet that >95% of pros would notice if the net was 1-2 inches too high or too low. In fact they are much more likely to notice it than regular club players. I Have been to NBA games where the players noticed that the rim was a couple inches too low and the officials measured it and the players were right. I have been around a lot of players that can notice a net off by 1-2 inches. I don't know why you find that hard to believe unless you are only playing with low level recreational players.

Sure a wrong net height may not throw off your game, but to simply dismiss it as trivial is not right.

If you're going to play, might as well play it with the right dimensions. I played in parks where there are no center straps and since I play in leagues and tournaments, I want to practice in the same enviroment so I bring my own middle strap to get the correct center height. What's the point of practicing on a 2.5 foot center height or a 3.5 foot center height when the same shots will have a different trajectory on a regulation net. Though I'm not a pro or close to it, I've programmed my racquet to hit the ball exactly 3.1 feet up the middle so an inch here or there will make or break me. :)

Topaz
03-28-2007, 02:47 AM
I was playing singles in a tournament when both me and my partner noticed the net was too high. It was really affecting her shots, and she was hitting much lower than I was, so her regular stroke was going into the net. We got it fixed, and then she proceeded to beat me 7-6, 6-3.

And we're both 3.0s...so if we noticed...well, I think you can fill in the rest of the sentence on your own.

TheGreatestAudia
03-28-2007, 04:37 AM
If you're going to play, might as well play it with the right dimensions. I played in parks where there are no center straps and since I play in leagues and tournaments, I want to practice in the same enviroment so I bring my own middle strap to get the correct center height. What's the point of practicing on a 2.5 foot center height or a 3.5 foot center height when the same shots will have a different trajectory on a regulation net. Though I'm not a pro or close to it, I've programmed my racquet to hit the ball exactly 3.1 feet up the middle so an inch here or there will make or break me. :)

I was playing singles in a tournament when both me and my partner noticed the net was too high. It was really affecting her shots, and she was hitting much lower than I was, so her regular stroke was going into the net. We got it fixed, and then she proceeded to beat me 7-6, 6-3.

And we're both 3.0s...so if we noticed...well, I think you can fill in the rest of the sentence on your own.

First of all JHB, why are you talking on here if you're programmed to hit the ball at 3.1 feet every time? You should be in Florida right now playing in the Sony. An inch is not going to make or break you, son. I bet there have been times you have played on a net that is been just a little off. There's no way all those neighborhood and public courts have all been at the exact height. No way. Also, there's no use in saying, "might as well play at the right dimensions," because no one is going to play if they know the net is off for whatever reason. And finally, do people really play you on a court with no strap? We're not stupid so of course we would never play on a court with no strap unless it was the only place we could play and we didn't happen to have a belt on our khakis that doubled as a net-strap.

Topaz, once again, the argument was not that we wouldn't notice. A lot of people would but I know a lot of people wouldn't as well. Not everyone has an "eagle eye" and can spot when a net is 1-2 inches of nor are they all looking for it. My main argument was that 1-2 inches is not going to throw you off your game by that much if any. Tell me, how far off was the net height when you played your singles opponent? Was it more than 2-3 inches or was it just 1 inch and when you fixed it, all your shots went in?

Topaz
03-28-2007, 05:06 AM
Topaz, once again, the argument was not that we wouldn't notice. A lot of people would but I know a lot of people wouldn't as well. Not everyone has an "eagle eye" and can spot when a net is 1-2 inches of nor are they all looking for it. My main argument was that 1-2 inches is not going to throw you off your game by that much if any. Tell me, how far off was the net height when you played your singles opponent? Was it more than 2-3 inches or was it just 1 inch and when you fixed it, all your shots went in?

This was about two years ago...so I don't really remember. It didn't affect me as much as her...and yes, once it was fixed, her forehand winners were going over instead of getting netted. If you hit low shots that normally barely clear the net, then yes, that difference of one or two inches will matter. I hit higher balls, so it didn't make a difference in my shots.

Chill out...I was just adding my experience.

TheGreatestAudia
03-28-2007, 05:18 AM
This was about two years ago...so I don't really remember. It didn't affect me as much as her...and yes, once it was fixed, her forehand winners were going over instead of getting netted. If you hit low shots that normally barely clear the net, then yes, that difference of one or two inches will matter. I hit higher balls, so it didn't make a difference in my shots.

Chill out...I was just adding my experience.

I apologize if that came off as insulting but several posters have pointed out that people would notice and it is frustrating to have to keep repeating myself. I find it very hard to believe that if the net was moved 1-2 inches either way that it would vastly improve ones game. If she was hitting the balls that close to the net every time, she couldn't have had any kind of depth on her balls, right? I posted earlier that if you're really, really good, your ball will be on average about 5-6 inches above the net. If that's where they are then 1-2 inches will not change anything.

goober
03-28-2007, 05:59 AM
I apologize if that came off as insulting but several posters have pointed out that people would notice and it is frustrating to have to keep repeating myself. I find it very hard to believe that if the net was moved 1-2 inches either way that it would vastly improve ones game. If she was hitting the balls that close to the net every time, she couldn't have had any kind of depth on her balls, right? I posted earlier that if you're really, really good, your ball will be on average about 5-6 inches above the net. If that's where they are then 1-2 inches will not change anything.

Why do you find it hard to believe that somebody would be affected by a net that is too high? Just because you would not be, doesn't mean that somebody else wouldn't be. There is a definite psychological factor in play if you are serving or hitting flat and you think the net is too high. That can affect your play. You don't have to hit consistently 2 inches over the net to affect you. Club players hit all over the place 1 inch above the net to a foot or more over the net if they hit flat. Over the course of the match you will notice that you are missing some balls that you would normally make. There are a lot of club players I know that carry tape measures in their tennis bags and I have no problem at all if they want to measure the net before starting.

Raiden.Kaminari
03-28-2007, 07:31 AM
It actually made sense for this guy's game. He had a heater of a first serve and didn't take much off the second, either. What bothered me was that he didn't have a tape measure or anything. He stacked two rackets together and claimed that the end of the handle of the second was equal to 36", despite it looking noticeably lower than the other courts. This was a 'quick and dirty' method he saw on the tennis channel. I'm not real confrontational (read: wuss) so I just let it go. Maybe I'll bring a ruler to the courts from now on.

Toward the end of the first set, however, I hit one of my normal awful backhands and just clipped the top of the net. It crawled over the top like a dying mouse and expired on the other side. As we watched my "winner" dribble toward the alley I couldn't help but note, "If you'd cinched the net down a quarter-inch less I think you would have won that point." Heh.

LOL! Turnabout is fair play ;)

Raiden.Kaminari
03-28-2007, 07:34 AM
Playing with the correct height of the net in higher level doubles is important. Besides serve aspects, there are two areas.

One comes when trying to chip so that the opponent has to return the shot up ... the old chip and dip. The other come when hitting hard low shots, which the lowness is important in making the shot a bit difficult to return. (I have no idea how, but a long time ago this hard, low shot became a key shot with decent probability for me.)

Don't forget that center net height also affects the alleys (for those of us that need to keep our passing shots in the alleys low).

Raiden.Kaminari
03-28-2007, 07:36 AM
For those of you don't know what ZAT is; it is Zone Advancement Tournament, the lowest level of USTA sanction tournament. Once you got 65 pts than the next level is Championship level(another 65 pts.) and the last level is the Super Championship level which is the top level for 18 yrs and under. My daughter is in ZAT right now and she is in the upper 15% pack. These tournament are held once a month only.

To make the story short, there are a few top girls who have earned 64 pts. (1 point away from moving up to Championship level) and I am witnessing 1 of these girls for several months trying to earn that 1 pt. to move up but couldn't because her style as a pusher impeding her progress to move to upper ladder. Several of opponents who she had beaten before already moved to the next level except this girl. It's painful to watch her trying to earn that 1 point.

It used to be 64 points to move up to next level but because the upper levels so clogged up that recently they added 1 more point to make it much harder for everybody.

When I coach my children, pushing is not allowed because the style doesn't have any varieties and lack of weapons to help player to end matches in a timely manner. And these girls have to play an average of 3 matches a day. No one can last through that stretch by pushing the ball.

I have to agree.

Getting into a rut and pushing is the best way to never improve in tennis. I like your attitude. Take some lessons, learn to be aggressive.

I love playing against pushers (aka golden retrievers). Since they're usually good at horizontal movements, I love hitting drop shots, and then lobs or passing shots instead of trying to move them side to side. When they hit a drop shot in return, I usually move up with a drive, and expect a lob if they reach the ball, or at least something I can hit an aggressive volley with.

Nick Irons
03-28-2007, 07:39 AM
Pusher's should be banned from the game.

SlapShot
03-28-2007, 07:45 AM
Pusher's should be banned from the game.

Because they're able to keep the ball in play longer than you are?

The only reason people get angry about pushers is because they don't have the skill to beat them. I tend to enjoy playing pushers - I have patience and prefer to practice developing points against pushers.

Nick Irons
03-28-2007, 07:51 AM
Because they're able to keep the ball in play longer than you are?

The only reason people get angry about pushers is because they don't have the skill to beat them. I tend to enjoy playing pushers - I have patience and prefer to practice developing points against pushers.


Yeeeeeeeeeah , that's it. (Insert ***** Slap Emoticon)

You think I didn't figure out how to beat a pusher years ago ?

No guts, no glory. Play ball or get the hell off the court.

SlapShot
03-28-2007, 07:56 AM
No guts, no glory. Play ball or get the hell off the court.

Since when was tennis a bigger Johnson contest? There are different styles of play, which is what makes tennis so fun to me.

If you want a sport where you are only judged on power, go play softball or racquetball - leave tennis to the people who want to play athletic chess.

cak
03-28-2007, 07:59 AM
My first league match as a captain, some opponent on a court I was not playing on started griping our nets were too high. Lucky for me, one of our spectators was is also a USTA referee. He knew the right height, broke into our clubhouse, pulled out a yardstick, and went and measured the net. Unfortunately for the opponent, turned out the net was 1/4 inch too low. He raised the net for her. :-)

At the end of the season, as captain I bought the entire team cute little tape measures with the tapes marked at the right net height, just in case it ever came up again. I am surprised how many times I've had to pull it out because people think the nets are the wrong height. And even stranger, most the time they are right.

As for the using the racquet measurement....30 something years ago, when I played with wooden rackets, you could do the height x width net measurement. But back then all racquets were the same size. With the advent of the oversized heads, that's not all that accurate a measurement anymore.

TheGreatestAudia
03-28-2007, 08:30 AM
Why do you find it hard to believe that somebody would be affected by a net that is too high? Just because you would not be, doesn't mean that somebody else wouldn't be. There is a definite psychological factor in play if you are serving or hitting flat and you think the net is too high. That can affect your play. You don't have to hit consistently 2 inches over the net to affect you. Club players hit all over the place 1 inch above the net to a foot or more over the net if they hit flat. Over the course of the match you will notice that you are missing some balls that you would normally make. There are a lot of club players I know that carry tape measures in their tennis bags and I have no problem at all if they want to measure the net before starting.

This is unbelievable. Let me first state the obvious, if you know that the net is off either way before you went into a match, no matter how far off, you would be thinking about it. Everybody would! I never said psychologically they wouldn't be affected. I was very clearly stating that physically there should not be a problem if you did not know, which in most cases, happens. I guarantee that there have been several nets at the wrong height that you have played on that went unnoticed. When you stated that club players hit from 1 inch to a foot over, you were actually proving my point that unless you hit 1-3 inches consistantly and you are hitting the tape every time, there is really no way to tell if it is just the net or if it is a technique/mental thing. It's just a "stab in the dark"! In the instance below, the girl was whining about the net being too high and it turns out it's lower than what it should be. This further proves my point that it's a guessing game. Just because you're missing shots into the net more than usual doesn't automatically qualify you to claim that the net is off. That comes from the stupid mentality "blame everything else but myself," and we both know that mentality is destined for failure.

My first league match as a captain, some opponent on a court I was not playing on started griping our nets were too high. Lucky for me, one of our spectators was is also a USTA referee. He knew the right height, broke into our clubhouse, pulled out a yardstick, and went and measured the net. Unfortunately for the opponent, turned out the net was 1/4 inch too low. He raised the net for her. :-)

At the end of the season, as captain I bought the entire team cute little tape measures with the tapes marked at the right net height, just in case it ever came up again. I am surprised how many times I've had to pull it out because people think the nets are the wrong height. And even stranger, most the time they are right.

As for the using the racquet measurement....30 something years ago, when I played with wooden rackets, you could do the height x width net measurement. But back then all racquets were the same size. With the advent of the oversized heads, that's not all that accurate a measurement anymore.

Nick Irons
03-28-2007, 08:47 AM
Since when was tennis a bigger Johnson contest? There are different styles of play, which is what makes tennis so fun to me.

If you want a sport where you are only judged on power, go play softball or racquetball - leave tennis to the people who want to play athletic chess.

Ohhhh; I'm talking to a pusher.

Who the hell said anything about it being about the bigger of the flugle horns ? Pushers; no guts, no glory. How does it feel to never hit a winner; a true winner, outright. Not waiting for your opponent to shank. Yawn.

-

Don't hate cause I think pushers suck; I've learned to beat most pushers at my level but roll my eyes when I relaize I'm digging in to play one. I'd rather lose playing our asses off; leaving it out on the court, than win playing dink ball.

-

Don't take it so personally. And I only play softball when there is a Keg on 2nd. Hardball is the only way to play.

SlapShot
03-28-2007, 08:49 AM
I'm pretty far from a pusher myself - I spent my childhood trying to hit the ball as hard as Agassi. I still can put a sting on the ball when I need to, but percentage tennis wins matches. I love winners as much as the next player, but I'd rather keep the ball in play and win than hit 45 unforced errors and lose - but I guess I like winning more than looking cool on the courts.

TheGreatestAudia
03-28-2007, 08:55 AM
I'm pretty far from a pusher myself - I spent my childhood trying to hit the ball as hard as Agassi. I still can put a sting on the ball when I need to, but percentage tennis wins matches. I love winners as much as the next player, but I'd rather keep the ball in play and win than hit 45 unforced errors and lose - but I guess I like winning more than looking cool on the courts.

I win and look cool.

Topaz
03-28-2007, 09:14 AM
If she was hitting the balls that close to the net every time, she couldn't have had any kind of depth on her balls, right? I posted earlier that if you're really, really good, your ball will be on average about 5-6 inches above the net. If that's where they are then 1-2 inches will not change anything.

She was putting away my short ball, so no, she didn't have any depth becuase she was angling them off with topspin...I saw the shot often, so I remember it!

PushyPushster
03-28-2007, 12:05 PM
Pushers; no guts, no glory. How does it feel to never hit a winner; a true winner, outright.


My racquet isn't a substitute for my penis, so I don't feel the need to wave it around quite so vigorously. How does it feel to never hit a winner? Just fine. I don't even remember the few winners I do hit. Maybe that's the psychological difference that makes for different styles of play. You know the shots I really remember? When I'm able to return a ball nobody thinks I'll be able to get to.

During my last season of mens doubles one of our opponents hit an angled shot close to the net that should have been a winner. I got a great jump on the ball, though, and managed to track it down outside our court for a return. The guy was so sure the point was his that he had turned his back and was walking away! His partner was screaming "The ball, The ball!", but it was too late. My shot went across for the point. Now, that's the stuff I remember. You won't get one of those every game, but I get my opportunities.

In any event, I want to win the game. That's the primary focus. I can't do it by bringing the heat, so it behooves me to find another way.

Nick Irons
03-28-2007, 12:18 PM
Of course all of you start making assumptions and spouting crap out of your mouths

You act like there are 2 kinds of tennis ? Pushing and Crushing the Rock ? Is that how you think I play ? You think cause I bag on pushers, that I'm swinging a symbolic dick around and trying to look cool ?

Are you seriously this lame or what ?

-

Winning is the only thing. We all play different styles; ssome people (myself included) aren't afraid to take chances and go for it. Other's (Like some here I presume) play very safe "Wait for the other guy to shank." tennis.

Whatever makes you feel good. 'A DOUBLE U is a DOUBLE U'. I play pretty agressive tennis. My error count is up at times, but my winners make up for it most often than not and I'm usually forcing errors off my opponent by sheer assualt.

PushyPushster
03-28-2007, 12:38 PM
You think cause I bag on pushers, that I'm swinging a symbolic dick around and trying to look cool ?


Well, yeah - pretty much. That's how it came across to me, anyway.

If you agree that winning is the object of the game then I don't understand why you seem personally offended that I'm not willing to spend my time on the court trying to hit a shot that I'm simply not capable of hitting.

EZRA
03-28-2007, 12:44 PM
Pushypushster: Speed is good and being able to retrieve almost anything is even better. But not having the arsenal to do anything with the shot defeats the reason of chasing down the ball. It would be good if you'd start focusing on developing a weapon... `cause pushing the ball back doesn't always work (as what you've learned on that match you mentioned).

PushyPushster
03-28-2007, 01:00 PM
Ezra: Your point is well taken. As I've mentioned before, though, I have years of self-taught tennis to unlearn and due to family constraints only a limited time to work with. Unless I'm willing to destroy my current game and drop out of the leagues I have so much fun with (I'm not) then I have move slowly.

I think the backhand would be the place to start. Not in order to "Develop a weapon", though. That's a little too bold! "Making it less of a Liability" is a more realistic goal. :D

EZRA
03-28-2007, 02:23 PM
That's good enough... as long as it makes your overall game better and less vulnerable to your opponent's attacks, then its all good.

Sometimes though, if you really WANT to improve your game, you have to dismantle all the bad habits you now have. Reinvent your game .. it may be a very frustrating process but it is quite rewarding in the long run. I know you're aware of this and it has probably crossed your mind several times ... I'd strongly suggest for you to do so.

I was in the same boat a few years ago. I, like yourself, was completely self taught.. starting when I was 6 yrs old way back when people were using wooden racquets. I was a small kid so it took both my limbs for me to be able to wield that heavy *** wooden stick. `Til now I play double fisted on both sides. Anyways, like I said... after competitive tennis (age-group and college tennis), I find myself playing doubles most of the time and my double fisted volleys aren't cutting it at all. I had to revamp my net game altogether and switch to one handers. It took me months of patience, perseverance, and hard work to get the feel of it .... and it paid off. Now, I only wish that I could've done it sooner since it completely made my game more complete (I used to depend on power shots from the baseline and totally no net game whatsoever).

A.Davidson
03-28-2007, 03:41 PM
Yikes, everyone getting so upset for no reason...Tennis is made up of different kinds of players who play the game in different ways. Arguing about the "satisfying points" is ludicrous, because to the different types each enjoy a certain way of doing things. Aggressive players probably DO remember those hard-hit winners more, whereas pushers are going to remember doing the impossible. Serve-and-volleyers remember their smashes/volley winners, big servers their aces, and so on and so forth. Just enjoy it...

jkonecne
03-29-2007, 08:10 PM
Now you know what it feels like when people like me play people like you. haha

Caswell
03-30-2007, 04:53 AM
I've completely removed the word "pusher" from my vocabulary.

This season I've played a lot of guys that can run down anything and simply focus on making solid contact with the ball in both the 3.0 and 3.5 leagues. Maybe this is pushing. Maybe I'm supposed to be mad that they're not hitting the ball as hard as the 4.0 guys I play occasionally.

I just know they make me work for my points, and that I improve more when I play them versus the typical 3.0 or 3.5 guy who can be beaten by hitting the ball down the middle and waiting for them to put it into the fence.

Clive Walker
03-30-2007, 07:40 AM
I have long felt that the reason many get upset at the retrieving style of play is that they are not quite able to dispatch it in the way they would like. (I have managed to get around this by reminding myself that I am not too far away technically from beating Push comfortably, although it can be frustrating as it's not the way I like to play the game) Once an attacking player reaches a certain standard he will completely destroy Mr Pushy, irrespective of how hard he runs.

rleidle
04-01-2007, 01:59 AM
Speaking of net height do most singles players make use of the wooden net posts that many clubs have? If you watch the pros you will notice that they move the net posts in for a singles match and out for a doubles match.

Get Wrecked
04-04-2007, 04:05 PM
I hate pushers. I really hope you die.

I had a match bout a month ago against the biggest pusher you could ever imagine. ever. He was fast as fck! and he would run-down potential winners back, with underspin, RIGHT BACK TO THE BASELINE!!! It was a HS match..I was #1 for my team and he #1 for his... neway I won the 1st set on tiebreak 7-6 (7-5) but I was so tired out from the first set, constantly having to conjur up impossible winners...that I ended up losing the second set 0-6 lol right.. the next set I worked abit harder, but once again, I wasn't hurting him! so that was pretty gey.. i lost the 3rd set 1-6.... >:[

so neways i wish a violent death upon u.

SlapShot
04-05-2007, 05:42 AM
^^^

So you were outplayed by someone more consistent than you, and you feel the need to whine about it?

Try getting more consistent and learn how to beat someone at their own game, instead of trying to outhit someone.

Once you reach a certain level, you can feast on pushers.

Caswell
04-05-2007, 05:47 AM
I hate pushers. I really hope you die...

It was a HS match..I was #1 for my team and he #1 for his...

so neways i wish a violent death upon u.

http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/forumdisplay.php?f=36

35ft6
04-07-2007, 02:48 AM
I just had a horrible singles match where I was out-pushed at my own game. One of my proudest wins in college was when I outpushed a pusher. It was one of those days. For whatever reason, the first few points I just rallied with him, and after that I just couldn't hit out. So every rally was a marathon. At the time, I just didn't miss slice backhands, so it turned into a battle of wills, backhand to backhand.

My coach came by in the second set, told me to start hitting up the middle because the guy likes pace and to hit on the move. I tried that for a while just to please my coach, even though I really wasn't giving him pace, but all of the sudden he would hit flat winners or force errors out of me. So I went back to pushing, which was all I could do that day. I think my coach caught him when he hit two spectacular shots in a row and assumed he was capable of doing that a lot.

Afterwards, the coach said the cattiest thing to me I ever heard from another coach, that his number one has beaten some really great players who hit hard because he loves pace. The way he said it, though, the message was clear: he beats people better than you, you brought his game down. Haha. Whatever.

DavaiMarat
04-09-2007, 08:16 AM
I'm a 5.0-5.5 and I love to play pushers. I use to hate it back in the day growing up but now I absolutely love it. To me it's a chance to hit one more ball and make that little f**'er run for it one last time.

2 strategies I use against pushers and they seem to work for me.

1) Approach the net - A pusher, no matter how much he lobs will be hard pressed to execute while you are coming in. You usually get a weak passing shot and no amount of legs will let him get to a short angled volley.

If he lobs, love the overhead, snap that wrist down and get that ball to bounce out of the court. There's nothing more discouraging to a pusher then to have it slammed with no chance of retrieval.

2) Bring him to the net. I love toying with pushers because you know you'll get a easy ball that you can play with. Drop him short, then come up the service line. He'll try to hit it and most likely try to retreat back to the baseline. Whammo, he can't respond while backtracking....drop him short again or volley it into the open court for a winner. Pushers are uncomfortable when put in a position where they must 'ACT' rather then 'REACT'.

Pushy, I think you need to graduate from your condition and get out of the pusher catergory and into the Counterpuncher realm.

A counterpuncher is someone who can redirect someone's pace and depth and create his own. For this you need good technique though, not only legs. This means you must be able to place the ball deep, in both corners and preferable with some good heavy spin. These players albeit are more defensive players are not pushers cause they can 'force' errors alot of time with there 'heavy' balls. It sounds like you need to develop this style to reach the next level.

Good luck with it.

PushyPushster
04-09-2007, 12:17 PM
2 strategies I use against pushers and they seem to work for me.

1) Approach the net


I read this advice all the time on this board but believe me, at the level I play (3.5), watching someone gallop towards the net isn't all that intimidating. As long as they don't have a good overhead smash my lob can usually keep them far enough off the net to give the necessary space for a well-placed, albeit slow, passing shot.


If he lobs, love the overhead, snap that wrist down and get that ball to bounce out of the court. There's nothing more discouraging to a pusher then to have it slammed with no chance of retrieval.


True. I hate playing guys with a good overhead smash. Watching someone paste it down the lines, or, worse yet, just smash it out the back of the court is depressing.


2) Bring him to the net.


Yeah, you've got my number. It takes a lot more energy to run back & forth than side to side and my net game is, well, less than impressive. It's amazing how few people will actually follow this gameplan, though.


Pushy, I think you need to graduate from your condition and get out of the pusher catergory and into the Counterpuncher realm.


Baby-steps. First a competent backhand ... then the world!

Raiden.Kaminari
04-11-2007, 11:38 PM
I'm a 5.0-5.5 and I love to play pushers. I use to hate it back in the day growing up but now I absolutely love it. To me it's a chance to hit one more ball and make that little f**'er run for it one last time.

2 strategies I use against pushers and they seem to work for me.

1) Approach the net - A pusher, no matter how much he lobs will be hard pressed to execute while you are coming in. You usually get a weak passing shot and no amount of legs will let him get to a short angled volley.

If he lobs, love the overhead, snap that wrist down and get that ball to bounce out of the court. There's nothing more discouraging to a pusher then to have it slammed with no chance of retrieval.

2) Bring him to the net. I love toying with pushers because you know you'll get a easy ball that you can play with. Drop him short, then come up the service line. He'll try to hit it and most likely try to retreat back to the baseline. Whammo, he can't respond while backtracking....drop him short again or volley it into the open court for a winner. Pushers are uncomfortable when put in a position where they must 'ACT' rather then 'REACT'.

Pushy, I think you need to graduate from your condition and get out of the pusher catergory and into the Counterpuncher realm.

A counterpuncher is someone who can redirect someone's pace and depth and create his own. For this you need good technique though, not only legs. This means you must be able to place the ball deep, in both corners and preferable with some good heavy spin. These players albeit are more defensive players are not pushers cause they can 'force' errors alot of time with there 'heavy' balls. It sounds like you need to develop this style to reach the next level.

Good luck with it.

I also love to play pushers ... but I have a third option (totally agree with #1 and #2)

3) Bring him to net ... then lob him if he tries to volley. If he gets the lob, drop him again and repeat (because you know he doesn't have the overhead). Vengeance is a dish best served cold.

chunlimeyers
04-12-2007, 06:01 AM
HOW TO BEAT A DINKER
BY: Vic Braden 1/9/2000

Having traveled to many tennis clubs and countries around the world, there is one constant on which I can count. Dinkers are still winning a ton of trophies and opponents are pulling out their hair with frustration. As a psychologist, I looked at this issue many years ago and it turned out to be quite complex.

From a pure tennis standpoint, the issue doesn’t seem too complicated. The dinker simply returns the ball until his/her opponent misses a shot. But, from a psychological viewpoint, there are several points worth considering if you want to beat the dinker.

The majority of dinkers are introverts. They have a great ability to stay focused on the retrieval issue and aren’t easily distracted. One year I was doing ski research at Vail, Colorado. We had three introverts and three extroverts listening to the instructor. I hid a camera and had a person ski down right behind the class. All three extroverts turned to see what was happening and all three introverts stayed focused on the instructor. Extroverts are more easily distracted and want to make something happen.

Dinkers seem to have a much higher frustration tolerance level. They are normally not surprised that the big hitters go bonkers failing to hit outright winners, which is almost impossible against dinkers. Often the big hitters will declare that “Today I’m going to just retrieve the ball and force the dinker to die on his/her own style”. It seldom works longer than a game or two before the slugger wants to commit suicide. Plenty of rackets have landed in trees, which were thrown by opponents of dinkers.

From a motor learning standpoint, the dinkers only have a few software packages that they send down to the muscles. The slugger has many times more and thus it’s easier to become confused when things don’t work.

From a physics point of view, it’s important to remember the formula espoused by tennis physicist, Dr. Howard Brody. That is, the speed of your shot is derived from getting one-half of your opponent’s ball speed, plus 1.5 times your own rackethead speed. Thus, the harder your opponent hits the ball, the faster your shot goes back with the same amount of effort. As dinkers have no speed to speak of, the opponent will then have to swing harder and faster than normal to produce the desired speed. In motor learning, there is a formula called the “speed-error” ratio. The bottom line is that the faster to try to swing and make things happen, the higher is the error ratio. Bingo.

Jack Kramer was an extremely smart player who could make strategy seem simple. In his words, “If your normal game is stronger than your opponent’s game, stick with your game. If your opponent’s game is more effective than yours, you will have to make you opponent hit shots they ordinarily do not like to hit. Dinkers are normally more successful up to the 4.0 level. After that, players normally have developed a solid game that is simply too strong for the dinker.

One, dinkers like to lengthen time frames for hitting shots. Thus, they normally stand way behind the baseline and allow the bounce to reach the apex and then fall. In physics, that just about doubles response time. So, one needs to develop short angle shots to force the dinker into the court to reduce response time. If dinkers are forced to hit “up” from a low position, the slugger can attack from midcourt and hit volleys while the ball is being lifted and the dinker is out of court. The problem, most opponents of dinkers can’t hit short angle shots. Dinkers often will run in for the short angle and then quickly retreat to the baseline. But if they have to do that ten times in succession, they often turn blue and disintegrate. Opponents of dinkers need to develop a slower slice serve to open up the court. A slower, but excessively sliced serve, actually can force a dinker to take seven to nine steps to reach the ball. Dinkers like to take a maximum of three steps to the left or right for every shot. Straight hard serves only make dinkers smile. Dinkers enjoy staying inside the sidelines, regardless of speed.

I take my hat off to dinkers because they have discovered a way to beat a ton of players. The complaint I often get comes from players who try the suggested tactics and they don’t work. For example, I hear them saying, “Yes, but what happens if the dinker can beat me from the baseline and from the net. The answer is, you will lose.

DavaiMarat
04-18-2007, 06:31 AM
on Tennisone.com ....they talk about two sorts of players and thier nervous system make up. The fellow who wrote it is a neurologist Dr. Ray Brown. He talks about 'punchers' (aggressive fast swinging players - AF) versus 'pushers' (slow swinging steady players -AS). Here's a snipet.

The second part of the strategy is to establish a standard ball rhythm using the FO system. This system is good for up to 90 seconds, a time more than ample to win a tennis point (except between two AS players -- a point of over 600 shots was once played on the WTA tour). This means that the player must develop sufficient body and mind control to establish a rally at 80% effort and maintain this rally until a decisive advantage is obtained. Mind control is a big issue with AF players. They naturally think fast and want to end the point fast. This error-prone condition may be improved if they better understand their motor control systems.

The AF player will want to attack the AS player. Here are the strategic facts. The AF player can only attack for a few seconds before exhaustion. The AS player can defend indefinitely. This energy mismatch must be addressed. For example, the AF player cannot be one-dimensional such as having only a big forehand. The AS player will usually prevail unless the AF player's ball speed exceeds the AS players reaction time. As an AF player progresses through the rounds of a tournament, they will eventually meet a player who can defend against their fastest ball. At this point their progress ends with a loss. To counter this situation, the AF player must have an alternative. A good alternative is the heavy topspin. This shot is well suited to the AF system. Do not confuse this with the commonly taught light topspin which is arm dominant (the familiar horseshoe pattern is one example). The heavy topspin is core and leg dominant( Nadal). The heavy topspin has several advantages for the AF player: (1) it allows the AF player to operate with the FO system until they develop an advantage; (2) it is an effective weapon against the pusher; (3) it is an attacking shot that does not require maximum effort.

It's a good read and might give you some insight into your own game.