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View Full Version : Justine Henin: Proof that short players can hang in tennis


Young Pete
06-05-2007, 11:27 AM
ne1 agree......

lethalfang
06-05-2007, 11:31 AM
Tennis is a sport where height gives you a significant, but non-overwhelming advantage. So yes, short players succeed in tennis, even though the odds are against them.
Comparing that to basketball, the advantage of being tall is non-decisive.

RafaN RichardG
06-05-2007, 11:40 AM
there are always exceptions to rules...Justine Henin is one
doesnt mean that all short players have a chance, if you're short you have to make up for it in one way or another, and she obviously does.

VGP
06-05-2007, 11:44 AM
To succeed while being short, you've gotta be fast and crafty. Have good eyes and hands and have good upper body strength as well.

Having a lower center of gravity really helps when you have to change directions. You have to have great footwork to go with quick speed as well.

I root for Olivier Rochus as well.

chris1992
06-05-2007, 11:50 AM
i think its harder if your shorter in atp than wta. in atp the balls come harder and probabely higher and you do not have anywhere near the strenght of a guy who is 6ft 2. hewitt has succeeded well despite being around 5ft 11 and olivier rochus im sure would be alot better if he had some height as he is like 5 ft 5.

Fedace
06-05-2007, 11:51 AM
YOu do have to remember that this is women's tennis NOT men's

edmondsm
06-05-2007, 11:59 AM
Ummm....Andre Agassi, anyone?

Rabbit
06-05-2007, 12:03 PM
there are always exceptions to rules...Justine Henin is one
doesnt mean that all short players have a chance, if you're short you have to make up for it in one way or another, and she obviously does.

This doesn't make sense. It doesn't just apply to short players, if you don't have a backhand you have to make up for it one way or another. If you don't have a major strength, you have to make up for it one way or another. If you're too tall you have to make up for it one way or another. Every player has a weakness and ever player faces challenges. Tennis is one of the few sports where height really doesn't give an athlete that much of an advantage.

VGP
06-05-2007, 12:04 PM
i think its harder if your shorter in atp than wta. in atp the balls come harder and probabely higher and you do not have anywhere near the strenght of a guy who is 6ft 2. hewitt has succeeded well despite being around 5ft 11 and olivier rochus im sure would be alot better if he had some height as he is like 5 ft 5.

That's why I like to watch O. Rochus even more.

By some accounts, his 5' 5" is actually more like 5' 3".......

Maybe some short guys coming up get discouraged and give up because they feel like they are put at a huge disadvantage. Seems to me if you've got the talent, quick hands and feet, and court sense (apart from the obvious dedication needed), lack of height isn't that insurmountable.

BTW, I love that O. Rochus is 2-0 over Ivo Karlovic and almost took out Federer at Halle last year.

MEAC_ALLAMERICAN
06-05-2007, 12:09 PM
Ummm....Andre Agassi, anyone?

Andre was listed at 5'11'', was an excellent striker of the ball and took it very early, thats where his power came from.

Justine is 5'5", no comparison. But Davis Ferrer and Guillemo Coria are listed at 59 and they are very crafty. Well Ferrer more than Coria now.

Banger
06-05-2007, 12:35 PM
I think it has more to do with her being an extraordinary athlete.

RafaN RichardG
06-05-2007, 12:52 PM
This doesn't make sense. It doesn't just apply to short players, if you don't have a backhand you have to make up for it one way or another. If you don't have a major strength, you have to make up for it one way or another. If you're too tall you have to make up for it one way or another. Every player has a weakness and ever player faces challenges. Tennis is one of the few sports where height really doesn't give an athlete that much of an advantage.

how doesn't it make sense?!?
this thread IS about her being short and succeeding, just because it applies to other areas, doesn't make my point any less credible. all you did was point out that it applies to other parts of someone's game too. if anyone's post didn't make sense, its that you just repeated what i said.
are you serious about height not being an advantage? haha do you think that players like Olivier Rochus wouldnt benefit by having a bigger serve, which height would help with? or more reach? why do you think he uses a 28 inch long racquet...c'mon
maybe its not as much a factor in the women's game because everything is a little slower, but overall height is a factor.

ChipNCharge
06-05-2007, 12:55 PM
Could also read: "Justine Henin: Proof that players with light racquets can hang in pro tennis"

zapvor
06-05-2007, 04:06 PM
Henin has proven herself to be worthy at the top of the women's game despite her height. i admire her tennis. as far as the WTA goes anyways

bluetrain4
06-05-2007, 04:20 PM
People talk about Henin (5'5") and Hingis (5'6") like they are 3'10". They are by no means short for women, though they are shorter than the other top players.

Movement and pentrating strokes go a long way towards negating the height disadvantage, especially on the women's side. Also, a lot of the bigger women (but not all, such as Venus) are not good movers, so as much as it is an asset for power, size can be a detriment for movement. I mean, how many more slams would Davenport win if she could have moved at all?

A lot of people think Hingis' trouble with the bigger girls is her height, but it's not. It's her strokes and grips. Too loopy, not enough penetration or racket head speed to create pace. And, she doesn't really lean into her shots.

So, I don't think it's any revelation that Henin is doing well and not necessarily an exception to any rule. Smaller women can play a "big" game if taught correctly.

randomname
06-05-2007, 04:33 PM
IMO, alot of it is just the fact that henin is one of the (very) few women who's technique is completely sound. if all of the women in the top 100 had as good of technique as the ATP top 100 henin would probably be a fairly good player at best

VGP
06-05-2007, 04:59 PM
IMO, alot of it is just the fact that henin is one of the (very) few women who's technique is completely sound. if all of the women in the top 100 had as good of technique as the ATP top 100 henin would probably be a fairly good player at best

You make it sound like talent like that is easy to come by.......

lilxjohnyy
06-05-2007, 05:01 PM
michael chang

Rabbit
06-05-2007, 05:34 PM
there are always exceptions to rules...Justine Henin is one
doesnt mean that all short players have a chance, if you're short you have to make up for it in one way or another, and she obviously does.

how doesn't it make sense?!?


Let me expand.

It doesn't mean that all <insert word here> players have a chance

tall
right-handed
left-handed


All players have something to overcome, that's why it didn't make sense.

RafaN RichardG
06-06-2007, 06:33 AM
i didnt say that all <insert word here> players have a chance
the starter of this thread said that basically because justine is good at what she does even though she is short, its proof that short players can make it. i didnt agree with that.
i said that there are always exceptions to the rule, the rule im referring to is that you need to be somewhat tall, which most people would agree with because most sucessful players have some height to them.
you're just rambling, i wasnt saying that only short players have something to overcome, but this thread is about short players, not players with webbed feet, players who wear glasses, etc. what i dont understand is why you felt like you had to point out that all players have soemething to overcome? because i said just that, but kept it on topic by using short people as an example.
it made sense. i even said in the post that "it doesnt mean that all short players have a chance" which is exactly what you said in your last post. i was keeping it on topic.

Rabbit
06-06-2007, 07:36 AM
I wasn't aware that there is a "rule" that you have to be somewhat tall to play tennis. What is somewhat tall? How do you explain then that the average height of the top ten ATP players has fallen in the last 5 to 10 years?

Like I said...jabberwocky...

icazares
06-06-2007, 08:50 AM
Agree with O. Rochus assessment. He's one of the most talented players, probably top 10, or even top 5, in talent. His matches are awesome. Had he been taller, probably we would be watching him in the Grand Slam final rounds.

RafaN RichardG
06-06-2007, 10:27 AM
I wasn't aware that there is a "rule" that you have to be somewhat tall to play tennis. What is somewhat tall? How do you explain then that the average height of the top ten ATP players has fallen in the last 5 to 10 years?

Like I said...jabberwocky...

seems like you're probably short and taking offense to this thread, if so, im sorry. but theres nothing i can do to help *rollseyes*
but as of now, youre looking a bit immature
i never said there was an actual "rule", i was just putting it that way. but to make it on the pro tour you have to have a standard of assets, you've got to be somewhat tall to generate enough power to fight against the others. but if you are a special talent like JHH, you can get around the height DISADVANTAGE.
even if the average height has fallen, thats the AVERAGE. if a player is below average, such as JHH or Olivier Rochus, then they ARE at a disadvantage.
do you agree that taller people can generate more pace on serve, and get more weight behind the ball? if so, then youre just making yourself look like an idiot. get over it, shorter people have a harder time making it. JHH makes it because shes just that much better of a player. but thats one out of how many thousands that have tried to make an impact on tour? thats my point.

ACE of Hearts
06-06-2007, 10:49 AM
Henin will have about 10 slams when her career is doned.Assuming she stays healthy.

SuperPhong
06-06-2007, 12:52 PM
ON THE WTA TOUR...Men's not soo much