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View Full Version : My FH is weak.... need help!


12th Man
02-05-2009, 08:02 AM
I can demolish backhands all day long, but my forehands lack pretty much everything......... They have no pace, and arent very consistent. Help me please!!!!

LeeD
02-05-2009, 08:08 AM
Possibly your backhands are good because you turn your shoulders and move your feet.
Try that on the forehand side also. Really turn the shoulders sideways, both arms going as well, then if you have time, move the feets. Try to hit with stable lower body, but forward momentum...don't back away from the ball, even if it's a shorthop.
Some bend at the knees, otherwise torso stable and vertical.
Try SW grip, low to high swing and turn that racket over if you can.
Very few top players can actually turn as well on BOTH sides, so SW grip allows you to hit openstanced topspin forehands as well.

Djokovicfan4life
02-05-2009, 08:11 AM
I'm guessing that you use a two hander, judging by this post? Anyway, most likely you aren't getting enough torso and shoulder rotation during your preparation and hitting zone phases and you're arming the ball with a horribly spinny swing path that's robbing you of power and more importantly, TIMING.

This is key for club level players.

Matt

user92626
02-05-2009, 08:15 AM
I'm also working big time on my FH -- out of desire to have more power and consistency.

You can read up on the motion, etc from so many threads here, but here I think for pace you need to develop the timing that allows you to hit and feel the racket head-on crashing against the ball. So big the momentum that you do not feel much about the weight of the ball.

12th Man
02-05-2009, 08:19 AM
I think another reason why my bh comes so much easier is that I play baseball, golf, and football left handed...... for some reason I play tennis righty though

LeeD
02-05-2009, 08:22 AM
I THINK user 92626 is saying you should swing out and faster.
Problem wid dat, balls go out.
You need to swing faster for sure, but add topspin to keep the ball IN the opponent's court.
So once again. Turn sideways, both arms and shoulders. SW grip, low to high swing, move weight forwards as you swing. Never retreat while swinging. You can run back all you want while the ball is still coming to you, but when you actually swing at the ball, you gotta be moving - weight shifting forwards.

fuzz nation
02-05-2009, 08:22 AM
My forehand goes dead if I get stuck on my back foot. In your next hitting session, be aware of that feeling of your weight rolling across the inside edge of your back foot as you push off with it. If it's not happening, you're leaving a lot of energy out of your swing. It may feel like you need to alter your tempo and move through the ball earlier, but that's key for getting a good stroke cranked up. The big contributors to forehand power are your legs and your rotation.

Djokovicfan4life
02-05-2009, 08:22 AM
I think another reason why my bh comes so much easier is that I play baseball, golf, and football left handed...... for some reason I play tennis righty though

Now I'm sure that you use a two handed backhand, haha! Yes, this confirms my belief that you're not using the rotational forces used in the modern forehand efficiently. Do you have a camera, by any chance? I'd love to take a look at your game in depth some time. Drop me an email if interested.

Matt

LeeD
02-05-2009, 08:25 AM
12th man....
You might have something there.....
I'm the opposite of you. I play lefty, but football, golf, baseball, archery, I was right handed!
So my lefty forehand is not as consistent. I mask it by hitting harder, going for more winners.
Opponent has to respect my forehand, even knowing it's inconsistent compared to my backhand. They serve to my backhand to get a returnable ball, but they serve to my forehand to get either a winner or a loser.

Djokovicfan4life
02-05-2009, 08:28 AM
12th man....
You might have something there.....
I'm the opposite of you. I play lefty, but football, golf, baseball, archery, I was right handed!
So my lefty forehand is not as consistent. I mask it by hitting harder, going for more winners.
Opponent has to respect my forehand, even knowing it's inconsistent compared to my backhand. They serve to my backhand to get a returnable ball, but they serve to my forehand to get either a winner or a loser.

.................................... forehand fail.

LeeD
02-05-2009, 08:39 AM
Yeah, my forehand is a failure.
I've always said it. If that side can catch up to the backhand, the serves, the volleys, the overheads, I'd be a solid 4.5 to 5.0 tournament player.
But as age (it's been 30 odd years) keeps counting, my forehand gets weaker but more consistent. Now SW grip, moderate top, mostly crosscourt to righty's backhand, I flatside it down the line, and can hit it easily 85mph if it's low enough coming in.
Up around the shoulders, you'd get a good laugh. Yes, I turn well sideways, level swing for a flattish shot, wrist pronating thru, but still mishit slightly and somewhat inconsistent. Working on it.
Fortunately, at my age, I don't see to much heavy tops. And when I do, I can volley really well, so I tend to volley it hard and low to the open court, and move in to end the point.
To end the point. Not saying to WIN the point.:shock:

12th Man
02-05-2009, 08:48 AM
Djokovicfan4life: I have a camera, but a friend of mine borrowed it for his vacation....... I'll email you as soon as he gets back though........ and I've only been playing since august, so im not a pro or anything

Djokovicfan4life
02-05-2009, 08:50 AM
Djokovicfan4life: I have a camera, but a friend of mine borrowed it for his vacation....... I'll email you as soon as he gets back though........ and I've only been playing since august, so im not a pro or anything

Can you make your email public for a little while, by any chance?

soyizgood
02-05-2009, 09:30 AM
I'm in a similar situation as OP, but I think I'm getting closer to figuring out my forehand issues. Actually felt quite good after testing my latest theory out.

I realize I don't need to swing as hard with the forehand as I do with my 2H backhand. In fact, I can probably get away with hitting with 1/2 to 3/5 as much force as I use with the backhand.

Another thing I did was make an effort to keep my feet balanced where I lean slightly forward before making contact. This way I can strike the ball without my shoulders out of balance.

Last thing I've done is hit more flat. I used to be a flat-hitter for a long time and was fairly consistent from both wings. As I tried to incorporate topspin, it threw off my forehand (timing, point of contact, finish, accuracy, etc.). Since I'm resorting to using less arm force on the ball, I'm now relying on balance and my leg strength to generate much of the power. I can still hit decent topspin, but I'm more comfortable hitting low-clearance (under 3' net clearance) forehands with pace that land deep and kick. I see why Federer likes the extreme eastern forehand.

LeeD
02-05-2009, 09:38 AM
Excellent points...
Yes, a one handed forehand has more leverage than a two handed backhand, so stands to reason you don't have to swing quite as hard.
And yes, a deeply hit flatter ball can be very effective at any level we'll ever see.
And power comes from the base, as you said, from the legs, the hips, and the torso.
Thank you for the excellent post.

Slicendicer
02-05-2009, 01:01 PM
Djokovicfan4life: I have a camera, but a friend of mine borrowed it for his vacation....... I'll email you as soon as he gets back though........ and I've only been playing since august, so im not a pro or anything

If your only playing since August, you're probably not ripping backhands or forehands. Find a coach, if you don't have money for lessons, find a coach... tell him you'll work your *** off and ask him to help teach you tennis. I coached many kids for 1 Gatorade per lesson. A good coach will want to teach you tennis.

Slicendicer
02-05-2009, 01:05 PM
That been said, let me add that if I hadn't been fortunate to have the coaches I did along the way... I wouldn't be near as good a player as I am. Mikael Pernfors, TJ Middleton, Torrey Hawkins, Joseph O'Dwyer... all of them spent hours a day on court with me for no charge... serious coaches charging $100 per hour to club members. A good coach will want to teach you tennis.

user92626
02-05-2009, 02:45 PM
I think it'd help if the OP tells us if he prefers a powerful traditional fh or a powerful topspin fh. They're quite different. To me the latter is more difficult.

Funny I thought I was the only one screwed up in trying to go from flat to topspin, but Soyi is saying he has the same problem. :)