View Full Version : Improving hitting shots on the run
09-17-2004, 05:03 PM
Hey, what are some ways to improve hitting shots on the run, such as when one has to sort of lunge at the ball to reach it or just feels off-balance and can't set up like normal? I have a tendency to try to go for too much instead of just getting it back in and deep, and sometimes my shots find the fence or another court lol. :? :P Is the whip-behind forehand ala Sharapova good when on the run or when one does not have much time because of the pace of the incoming shot? What about when hitting a backhand on the run? (I have a two-hander) Thanks
09-17-2004, 05:08 PM
supposedly the buggy whip forehand (sharapova) is great for running.
for low balls i run for, i just keep a sw forehand grip and just hit it flat over my opponent who is usually at the net, or hit a passing shot. i actually did this twice last monday i think in the same practice session.
09-18-2004, 12:07 AM
It depends on if the shot is going to your backhand or forehand, deuce or ad court and where your opponent is. If I am running to the deuce court (my forehand) and my opponent is at the net in the middle I will lob him. If for some reason he is in the ad court I will hit a cross court passing shot. If he is on the deuce court I will try to hit it down the middle to his backhand side to give myself time to recover. To my backhand side it is the same thing. If I can't get my 2hbh I will try a lob or a low enough slice to where it's dropping at my opponent's feet so he needs to reflex volley it high enough to not hit the net and give me a chance to move in. The most important thing you can do is make up your mind while you're on the run. See where your opponent is and decide where you're going to hit before you do. This will keep the errors down and help you stay in the point. HTH.
09-18-2004, 06:24 AM
To improve shots on the run, it's best to get the racquet back as early as possible. That might help.
09-18-2004, 06:29 AM
Keep your head as "quiet" as possible. Watch Sampras' and Federer's running shots and you'll see what I mean.
"To improve shots on the run, it's best to get the racquet back as early as possible. That might help."
I find it difficult to run with the racquet back in most cases but maybe you guys can get away with it.
I see that many run completely through the ball (especially short ones) and the ball sails long.
Taking racket back and running toward the ball happens at the same time.
There are a lot of factors involved.
If you are quick, then it will be much easier to hit shots on the run. And being quick is different from running 100 meter in 10 sec. You need to be able to run 10m as quickly as you can. In other words, you have to be explosive. Doing kangaroo jump, suicide drills, lateral, forward lunges will help. Squats will help as well. These will strengthen your leg, and help you be more balanced and explosive.
Another aspect is, strengthen your core muscles. Stomach, chest.
You need to be able to swing fast without disturbing your balance. I have learned that strengthening these muscles help my balance tremendously. Push Ups are good, but I recommend bench press. Doing serises of 3~5 different types of sit ups are good choice as well.
Last but not the least, you need to take quick, little adjustment steps before you hit. You sprinted 3~4 meters, and you need to be balanced. The only way to do is to take these adjustment steps.
Also, keep your eye on the ball throughout, so your body knows how far you are away from the ball and you don't overrun.
I have found that doing jump ropes really help with footspeed (this is different from movement though).
09-19-2004, 09:00 PM
Another thing is to make sure you can anticipate that you will be hitting on the run. The sooner you can get that break to the ball the better shot selection you will have. I am very fast and so are a lot of the guys that I play, but the difference between all of us is being able to recognize when we need to run. Some guys react real late and are lucky to get a frame on the ball, others react properly and can have any shot they want while on the run. If you can recognize where the ball is going while it is still on its upward path towards the net or just past it you can get there before the bounce and not have to worry about a running shot. Sure sometimes you're out of position out wide or elsewhere, but the sooner you recognize what your opponent is going to do the faster you can get to the ball and the better chance you have of being in the point. HTH.
09-19-2004, 10:19 PM
I recommend improving on your non running shots. If you can master controlling how high the ball clears the net then you can apply that very same technique to a running forehand. Along the way you may also develop a technique to improvise for some type of reason such as a buggy whip shot or something.
You should be able to almost scrape the net tape at will or clear it by a foot or more.
The key is scrape the net tape or hit the net tape at will.
Also run like you have no reach to the ball. You should move just like hitting a double handed backhand.
09-20-2004, 10:07 AM
i recently read this and its helped me a lot. if your really racing for a ball, i mean your legs and arms are movin'....you need to focus on having a loose or relaxed upper body / arm when you swing.....somthing along the line of what gregraven was saying i believe.
09-20-2004, 07:43 PM
Many different ways to improve hitting on the run, I imagine.
The buggy whip shot is one adjustment that is probably easy for a lot of people (but I'm sure there are people out there who just might not be able to do it.... I guess). Examples would be like Sampras, Hingis, or Grosjean--when hitting running forehands. But the buggy-whip is only dealing with the forehand.
Chipping and slicing is another good alternative stroke method. Getting a really good slice isn't very easy on the run, but getting adequate or defensive slice or chip shots is very possible on the run, but you run the risk of giving away volley fodder--and that might be exactly what your opponent had in mind.
Ultimately... Improving your anticipation, reaction, fitness, and/or footwork helps a lot. You can improve anticipation simply by gaining experience and playing more while concentrating on when opponents like to hit away from you. You can also improve anticipation by getting a general idea of what is percentage play and ideal places to return to--but I don't think you should be overzealous in this, but good positioning is good positioning. Reaction mostly comes from just focused training and practice. Just keep working at it. The sooner you can react, the better your odds. It'll help your balance when you get to the ball on the run. Fitness always helps.
Also, if you don't have great footwork already... it really helps in every way, and it shines in situations that used to require you to be on the run.
Using alternative strokes can be seen as a sort of shortcut, but the good is that it adds variety to your game. But honestly, though I used to use the buggy whip a lot on forehand and a chip slice on backhand (it's probably hardest to hit backhands on the run no matter the style of backhand a person has), with better footwork I now prefer going for full on strokes--but it's harder to do, for awhile.
09-20-2004, 08:00 PM
I'm too lazy to read all the posts, so sorry if this is repetitive...
If you're dragged wide off the court and you're stretching to get the ball, I would recomend you hit slice. It's easier to hit on the run that topspin, because with top you need to get some weight behind it to be effective. With slice you can just cut it back into play, and against newer players, you might even get the winner if they aren't used to getting sliced. My $.02
09-21-2004, 08:22 AM
footwork is EVERTHING in tennis
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