View Full Version : Decisions/Decisions - When to hit a flat return?

05-11-2007, 05:35 PM
Your preparing to return a forehand hit from your opponent and the ball hits bounce up where you can not drop the racquet head and swing through with topspin(low to high). You have positioned yourself and you have no choice but to hit it now! It is up fairly high...I have to hit it flat with no topspin. Question - How high does the ball have to bounce up for you to flatten out and drive thru the return. Net high, higher or lower than the net? How do you decide?

05-11-2007, 06:32 PM
In the scenario you just described I would want it somewhat higher than the net.

05-11-2007, 06:45 PM
when that happens i still swing low to high. it just becomes a moonball.

Bottle Rocket
05-11-2007, 07:03 PM
Your post doesn't make a lot of sense to me, but it sounds like a sitation that should never happen... It sounds like a footwork problem.

With that said, you can flatten a ball out whenever you want. If the ball is below the level of the net, you'll have a hard time keeping it in. If it is at the level of the net, you have to be perfect, so not a real safe bet. If it is a foot or more higher than the net and you're in an aggressive/offensive position, go for it!

You don't need to "drop the racket head" prior to swinging to get top spin. I guess I don't really understand the situation?

05-11-2007, 07:40 PM
Dropping the racquet head is for extra topspin. And i would just take it on the rise so it doesnt get that high in the first place

05-11-2007, 08:23 PM
I find it easier to hit a topspin forehand when the balls above my shoulders, although it does tend to moonball. I also tend to finish over my right head instead of left shoulder.

05-11-2007, 09:05 PM
I agree with Bottle Rocket. Unless you are talking about a bad bounce, you should pretty much have split step as your opponent hits the shot, read the direction and trajectory of the ball, moved appropriately, know what shot you are going to hit and set up for it, BEFORE the ball bounces on your side of the court.

If you are just deciding wether to topspin or hit flat after the bounce you are going to be really late on that shot

05-12-2007, 09:33 PM
I agree, that you should be able to hit topspin off, basically, any ball.

In a situation, such as you describe, you have no control over how high the ball bounces, so I don't see the point of asking what is the best height.

At any rate, if you are jammed and don't have time for a normal swing, take a short backswing and just punch through the ball and get it in play, then try to be more prepared next time.

Having said that, there are certain serves that are more difficult to hit with lots of topspin than others- a fast, high-bouncing serve that leaps into or away from your body might be an example. A ball leaping up and a racket swinging up makes for a very small impact target if you are not used to it. You can punch through them, same as described, above.