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Falloutjr
11-01-2009, 02:21 PM
I've been watching some videos on Youtube of players on the ATP and WTA moonballing because I love to watch the lob game, and I noticed most commenters had a strong disdain to say the least for the tactic. I find it very effective and I use moonballs on a regular basis and I don't think it's cheap or unskilled or anything. It's simply a style of tennis like SnV. Big serve, very safe 2nd serve, and lots of moonballs and smashes and lots of retrieving. It's not terribly complex or imaginative, but if you master it, I think could be a huge advantage. So why is it that it has such a negative connotation?

ronalditop
11-01-2009, 02:34 PM
So basically what you're saying is that you're a pusher and you want to be more respected.

Falloutjr
11-01-2009, 02:44 PM
So basically what you're saying is that you're a pusher and you want to be more respected.

I'm saying that I frequently use moonballs (80-90%% on FH) and it is a nice weapon for me. I attack when my opponent's give me the chance, though, and I'm not afraid to hit a drop shot or finish a weak shot at the net, and I don't moonball off my backhand THAT often (maybe 40-50% of the time, but I still generate lots of topspin), so I'm more aggressive than a "pusher", but I use topspins and slices as my main weapons, and I stay in long rallies until I can hit a good angle, drop shot, or smash for a winner, or my opponent hit's the ball out or it bounces over the fence for an easy winner. If you wanna call that pushing, then so be it, but I don't believe it is. But if it works, then it shouldn't be disrespected. I'm not asking people to say that moonballers are the GOATs. I'm just saying not to dismiss them as a player simply because they don't adhere to the purist's idea of tennis players.

Nonentity
11-01-2009, 02:48 PM
because its boring to watch

Falloutjr
11-01-2009, 02:49 PM
because its boring to watch

High school tennis isn't exactly a spectator sport :/

VaBeachTennis
11-01-2009, 03:02 PM
So basically what you're saying is that you're a pusher and you want to be more respected.

I don't think that hitting a moon ball with a good amount of topspin is "pushing". It's a good tactic that actually works against different styles of players.

ubermeyer
11-01-2009, 03:05 PM
High balls are very effective. Nadal uses them a lot, look at him. If you can hit high, deep, consistent, and with lots of topspin, you will win a lot. Nobody can really answer that effectively, if it is hit well enough. When people are flat out hitting them straight up in the air, you can hit overheads from the baseline, but if they are hitting topspin lobs, that is much harder.

So, go for it.

VaBeachTennis
11-01-2009, 03:06 PM
I'm saying that I frequently use moonballs (80-90%% on FH) and it is a nice weapon for me. I attack when my opponent's give me the chance, though, and I'm not afraid to hit a drop shot or finish a weak shot at the net, and I don't moonball off my backhand THAT often (maybe 40-50% of the time, but I still generate lots of topspin), so I'm more aggressive than a "pusher", but I use topspins and slices as my main weapons, and I stay in long rallies until I can hit a good angle, drop shot, or smash for a winner, or my opponent hit's the ball out or it bounces over the fence for an easy winner. If you wanna call that pushing, then so be it, but I don't believe it is. But if it works, then it shouldn't be disrespected. I'm not asking people to say that moonballers are the GOATs. I'm just saying not to dismiss them as a player simply because they don't adhere to the purist's idea of tennis players.

Smart tactics at your level. Stick with what is working for you and change what doesn't work for you in a match. For example, what do you do when your opponent likes your moon balls and starts playing them aggressively? Do you just keep on moon balling or do you change your tactics?

Falloutjr
11-01-2009, 03:06 PM
I don't think that hitting a moon ball with a good amount of topspin is "pushing". It's a good tactic that actually works against different styles of players.

Exactly. I've hit moonballs to opponent's that couldn't hit on the rise and it would land over the fence. Moonballing is great against SnV (and volleyers in general) and power baseliners, impatient players, players with 1hbh, players who can't hit on the rise, shorter players, etc. so it's a very effective strategy against a multitude of opponents. Offensive lobs are a lost art.

Nellie
11-01-2009, 03:08 PM
The irony is that you will beat most high school kids by rolling back moonballs (a few good ones will punish it) but every one will look down on you for doing it.

In fact, if you go to 12-13 year old tournaments, you will see kids doing this a lot.

Falloutjr
11-01-2009, 03:08 PM
Smart tactics at your level. Stick with what is working for you and change what doesn't work for you in a match. For example, what do you do when your opponent likes your moon balls and starts playing them aggressively? Do you just keep on moon balling or do you change your tactics?

Well, players that can handle my moonballs are power players that like to hit on the rise, so to negate their flat shots, I try to keep the ball low with slices and angle them off in every direction to keep them from getting their feet set and play inside out, using my athleticism to outlast them in long rallies and to keep them from setting up a cannon that can wrongfoot me or make me put up a weak shot in general. I'm more than willing to go CC/DTL over and over again.

ubermeyer
11-01-2009, 03:10 PM
Drop shot + lob works well too.

Falloutjr
11-01-2009, 03:15 PM
Drop shot + lob works well too.

Oh yeah. I love moonball + drop + angle volley as well. By the time they run from the fence to the net, they put up a duck that a beginner could put away with ease.

ubermeyer
11-01-2009, 03:16 PM
Oh yeah. I love moonball + drop + angle volley as well. By the time they run from the fence to the net, they put up a duck that a beginner could put away with ease.

Interesting. Lob them when they're at the baseline and then drop shot. I have actually never tried this.

VaBeachTennis
11-01-2009, 03:17 PM
Exactly. I've hit moonballs to opponent's that couldn't hit on the rise and it would land over the fence. Moonballing is great against SnV (and volleyers in general) and power baseliners, impatient players, players with 1hbh, players who can't hit on the rise, shorter players, etc. so it's a very effective strategy against a multitude of opponents. Offensive lobs are a lost art.

Good points. It's nice to see you thinking about strategy & tactics as a person in High School! It's good thinking for any age. How has your strategy and tactics worked for you in competition?

callen3615
11-01-2009, 03:19 PM
So basically what you're saying is that you're a pusher and you want to be more respected.

:) :) :)

VaBeachTennis
11-01-2009, 03:21 PM
The irony is that you will beat most high school kids by rolling back moonballs (a few good ones will punish it) but every one will look down on you for doing it.

In fact, if you go to 12-13 year old tournaments, you will see kids doing this a lot.


They may be looking down, but he's looking up with his victories. ;)

Falloutjr
11-01-2009, 03:21 PM
Good points. It's nice to see you thinking about strategy & tactics as a person in High School! It's good thinking for any age. How has your strategy and tactics worked for you in competition?

Pretty well actually I'll be playing first singles this season. Last season I was dealing with nagging wrist and shoulder injuries so I only played a few matches (only one first singles match), but my body's feeling a lot better and if I keep myself in shape over the winter, I should be able to seriously compete for a city championship this upcoming season.

As for USTA and whatnot, I don't really have the money for that, but a few college coaches are interested in me so maybe they'll let me practice with their teams over the winter hehe ;)

jazzyfunkybluesy
11-01-2009, 03:23 PM
I like to run up and smash a moon ball so they know not to try that old crap again.

VaBeachTennis
11-01-2009, 03:24 PM
Well, players that can handle my moonballs are power players that like to hit on the rise, so to negate their flat shots, I try to keep the ball low with slices and angle them off in every direction to keep them from getting their feet set and play inside out, using my athleticism to outlast them in long rallies and to keep them from setting up a cannon that can wrongfoot me or make me put up a weak shot in general. I'm more than willing to go CC/DTL over and over again.


LOL, pretty smart! Can you flatten out your shots as well and can you punish short balls? If not, those are things that you may want to work on to make your game more well rounded.

Falloutjr
11-01-2009, 03:24 PM
I like to run up and smash a moon ball so they know not to try that old crap again.

My moonballs clear the net by 20 feet and land a foot from the baseline. Good luck with that :)

ubermeyer
11-01-2009, 03:25 PM
I like to run up and smash a moon ball so they know not to try that old crap again.

How would you run up? If it's hit with topspin, it's not going to be so slow that you can just run up and smash it before the bounce, unless you were already approaching the net before they hit the ball.

Falloutjr
11-01-2009, 03:28 PM
LOL, pretty smart! Can you flatten out your shots as well and can you punish short balls? If not, those are things that you may want to work on to make your game more well rounded.

I CAN hit somewhat flatter, but I avoid it and playing the net if I can. Flat backhands are easy for me, but flat forehands are harder. I can hit with precision, but power is a bit lacking. I compensate for power with angles because, while I can't smash the ball on a regular basis, if they have to run for the ball and stop, then I've essentially accomplished the same thing as hitting with pace in that I've reduced the amount of time they have to hit the ball, although there's less pressure on them to make an amazing shot. OTOH, it's effective against players who struggle to hit weak balls with pace, and still plays into my hands. With that being said, learning how to crush forehands would be nice ;D

callen3615
11-01-2009, 03:30 PM
My moonballs clear the net by 20 feet and land a foot from the baseline. Good luck with that :)

Its called an overhead.

volusiano
11-01-2009, 03:32 PM
I like to run up and smash a moon ball so they know not to try that old crap again.

Effective moon balls with lots of top spin are usually like overheads that look like they may be out, but suddenly drop down very deep near the baseline, and if you don't take them on the rise, they will bounce over your head and beyond your racket reach. You won't be running up and smashing them like you think. You'll most likely have to back way up to catch them if you don't take them on the rise, and usually you'll be out of position and end up returning another moon ball back, or hit it out of bound or into the net. If taking it on the rise, you'll have to time it perfectly and be in the exact position by the bounce. We're not talking about the "give away" moon balls here my friend. Effective moon balls are not a piece of cake to deal with like you think.

Falloutjr
11-01-2009, 03:32 PM
Oh really? Is that what tennis players are calling those things that they swing down and make the ball go really fast? Thanks for informing me!

ubermeyer
11-01-2009, 03:34 PM
Its called an overhead.

It is very tough to hit an overhead off Nadal's shots from the baseline, though some are headhigh

VaBeachTennis
11-01-2009, 03:35 PM
Pretty well actually I'll be playing first singles this season. Last season I was dealing with nagging wrist and shoulder injuries so I only played a few matches (only one first singles match), but my body's feeling a lot better and if I keep myself in shape over the winter, I should be able to seriously compete for a city championship this upcoming season.

As for USTA and whatnot, I don't really have the money for that, but a few college coaches are interested in me so maybe they'll let me practice with their teams over the winter hehe ;)

Cool, I wish you the best of luck and skill with your endeavors! Keep your fitness level high.

Falloutjr
11-01-2009, 03:38 PM
Cool, I wish you the best of luck and skill with your endeavors! Keep your fitness level high.

Thank you. I'm very athletic, but as you can imagine, I can tire from the way I play so I'll try to hit the gym hard this winter.

VaBeachTennis
11-01-2009, 03:44 PM
I like to run up and smash a moon ball so they know not to try that old crap again.

Ok, how many times out of 10 can you hit those shots successfully? What would your winner to UE ratio be?

Falloutjr
11-01-2009, 03:45 PM
Ok, how many times out of 10 can you hit those shots successfully? What would your winner to UE ratio be?

Exactly. I'll hit you moonballs and you smash them. You get more than 5 out of 10 you win the match ;P

VaBeachTennis
11-01-2009, 03:58 PM
I CAN hit somewhat flatter, but I avoid it and playing the net if I can. Flat backhands are easy for me, but flat forehands are harder. I can hit with precision, but power is a bit lacking. I compensate for power with angles because, while I can't smash the ball on a regular basis, if they have to run for the ball and stop, then I've essentially accomplished the same thing as hitting with pace in that I've reduced the amount of time they have to hit the ball, although there's less pressure on them to make an amazing shot. OTOH, it's effective against players who struggle to hit weak balls with pace, and still plays into my hands. With that being said, learning how to crush forehands would be nice ;D

All you have to do is adjust the angle of your swing path. Instead of say a 60 degree angle, make it a 45 degree angle. In plain words make the swing path more horizontal sometimes instead of more vertical. It's good to have variety in your strokes, just in case the other game plan goes awry.

Falloutjr
11-01-2009, 04:00 PM
I swing through the ball and finish over my shoulder, but my muscles instinctively still think either WW or lob when I hit forehands and still swing up a little bit, so I'll try to work on that.

VaBeachTennis
11-01-2009, 04:03 PM
Thank you. I'm very athletic, but as you can imagine, I can tire from the way I play so I'll try to hit the gym hard this winter.

Good, make sure you work on foot work and cardio.

Falloutjr
11-01-2009, 04:05 PM
Running on the 'mill should be good for endurance and cardio, right? :P As for footwork, I can just do cone drills and hit against the wall in the basement and go indoors once or twice a week to keep my serves up.

xFullCourtTenniSx
11-01-2009, 04:05 PM
I've been watching some videos on Youtube of players on the ATP and WTA moonballing because I love to watch the lob game, and I noticed most commenters had a strong disdain to say the least for the tactic. I find it very effective and I use moonballs on a regular basis and I don't think it's cheap or unskilled or anything. It's simply a style of tennis like SnV. Big serve, very safe 2nd serve, and lots of moonballs and smashes and lots of retrieving. It's not terribly complex or imaginative, but if you master it, I think could be a huge advantage. So why is it that it has such a negative connotation?

It's because it's boring tennis where people no longer play with balls or setting up points.

So basically what you're saying is that you're a pusher and you want to be more respected.

Pushers no longer exist at the 4.5 level. I'd call these players counterpunchers.

High balls are very effective. Nadal uses them a lot, look at him. If you can hit high, deep, consistent, and with lots of topspin, you will win a lot. Nobody can really answer that effectively, if it is hit well enough. When people are flat out hitting them straight up in the air, you can hit overheads from the baseline, but if they are hitting topspin lobs, that is much harder.

So, go for it.

It's not the hard really if the damned public courts gave you more room to back up and hit... THAT'S the tough part, you don't have as much room as top pros to back up and rip a good one back. So you're left with hitting it on the rise, which isn't all that bad, but most people fail to practice it.

Oh yeah. I love moonball + drop + angle volley as well. By the time they run from the fence to the net, they put up a duck that a beginner could put away with ease.

Either that person has a bad response to the moonball, bad movement (doesn't get back into position), or bad anticipation (or a combination of the 3) because hitting a moonball back to you gives them plenty of time to get back to the center of the court, easy for them to retrieve a drop shot and take control of the point with. If you came into the net, you're the sitting duck unless you guess right and put the volley away, which will happen quite often at 5.5+. Depends on how your levels match up. Against 4.5s that might work... I have no real idea. But at 5.5+, it's more difficult to pull off cause a moonball won't draw out a weak shot unless it caught them by surprise as a change-up.

Interesting. Lob them when they're at the baseline and then drop shot. I have actually never tried this.

Same general idea as using a deep, high topspin change-up to back them up, then hit the sharp angle to the same side. It's all about getting the opponent out of position and exploiting the open court.

As for USTA and whatnot, I don't really have the money for that, but a few college coaches are interested in me so maybe they'll let me practice with their teams over the winter hehe ;)

Maybe as a ball machine for the players to practice dip drives. I see no way a 4.5 moonballer can be a good practice partner for college tennis unless it's not that good of a team. I've heard of 5.0 and 5.5 top ranked national juniors ending up as nothing but practice partners. Maybe that was just the top D1 schools, but still I don't see a 4.5 moonballer giving too much practice to college players. Just my personal view on it.

LeeD
11-01-2009, 04:10 PM
With a somewhat flat SW forehand and a hard sliced backhand, I like to moon either side towards my opponent while I approach net. Change of pace, location, spin, speed, and height generally gives me a volleyable ball, which I can place into the open court. Just WW a high finish and clearance over the net by 10', too low for them to overhead, too high to groundie pound. Not worth much if I had normal high bouncing groundies off both sides. But I don't.

VaBeachTennis
11-01-2009, 04:10 PM
Exactly. I'll hit you moonballs and you smash them. You get more than 5 out of 10 you win the match ;P

LOL. My friend/hitting partner is a teaching pro who uses a western grip and does the moon ball thing. If I give them enough room, they will "eat me up" and go over my head and push me back toward the fence. There are a few ways I negate it:
1: Take it on the rise when I can and put pressure on him. But I have to watch the UE's
2:Moonball him back and wait for my opportunity to attack, but he's smart enough to take some of my moonball return on the rise and put me off balance.
3: If it goes to my backhand, slice it and make him hit up on the ball to set me up for a winner/approach shot.
4: Hit a high flat return that skids on the ground (forehand).

Falloutjr
11-01-2009, 04:10 PM
It's because it's boring tennis where people no longer play with balls or setting up points.



Pushers no longer exist at the 4.5 level. I'd call these players counterpunchers.



It's not the hard really if the damned public courts gave you more room to back up and hit... THAT'S the tough part, you don't have as much room as top pros to back up and rip a good one back. So you're left with hitting it on the rise, which isn't all that bad, but most people fail to practice it.



Either that person has a bad response to the moonball, bad movement (doesn't get back into position), or bad anticipation (or a combination of the 3) because hitting a moonball back to you gives them plenty of time to get back to the center of the court, easy for them to retrieve a drop shot and take control of the point with. If you came into the net, you're the sitting duck unless you guess right and put the volley away, which will happen quite often at 5.5+. Depends on how your levels match up. Against 4.5s that might work... I have no real idea. But at 5.5+, it's more difficult to pull off cause a moonball won't draw out a weak shot unless it caught them by surprise as a change-up.



Same general idea as using a deep, high topspin change-up to back them up, then hit the sharp angle to the same side. It's all about getting the opponent out of position and exploiting the open court.



Maybe as a ball machine for the players to practice dip drives. I see no way a 4.5 moonballer can be a good practice partner for college tennis unless it's not that good of a team. I've heard of 5.0 and 5.5 top ranked national juniors ending up as nothing but practice partners. Maybe that was just the top D1 schools, but still I don't see a 4.5 moonballer giving too much practice to college players. Just my personal view on it.

Well I've only been playing about a year now; I'll get better as I play more. Plus, I'm going to a D3 school, so I'll still get a fair bit of playing time.

ubermeyer
11-01-2009, 04:15 PM
It's not the hard really if the damned public courts gave you more room to back up and hit... THAT'S the tough part, you don't have as much room as top pros to back up and rip a good one back. So you're left with hitting it on the rise, which isn't all that bad, but most people fail to practice it.

Either that person has a bad response to the moonball, bad movement (doesn't get back into position), or bad anticipation (or a combination of the 3) because hitting a moonball back to you gives them plenty of time to get back to the center of the court, easy for them to retrieve a drop shot and take control of the point with.

If you hit a good drop shot and a good moonball I don't think they would really control the point, plus your point about public courts

Falloutjr
11-01-2009, 04:16 PM
LOL. My friend/hitting partner is a teaching pro who uses a western grip and does the moon ball thing. If I give them enough room, they will "eat me up" and go over my head and push me back toward the fence. There are a few ways I negate it:
1: Take it on the rise when I can and put pressure on him. But I have to watch the UE's
2:Moonball him back and wait for my opportunity to attack, but he's smart enough to take some of my moonball return on the rise and put me off balance.
3: If it goes to my backhand, slice it and make him hit up on the ball to set me up for a winner/approach shot.
4: Hit a high flat return that skids on the ground (forehand).

Yeah returning a high bouncing ball with one hand it actually much easier than people make it seem. Can't speak for the 2hers out there cuz I don't hit 2h but if you can get your racquet parallel with the net over your shoulder and slice it, you get a nice return with a decent bit of pace and backspin. And yeah, it's annoying when people take my moonballs on the rise, but by the time they've hit it, I'm back in my position at the baseline, so I can keep the rally going. Sometimes, I'll still moonball to someone who hits on the rise if they're taking control of the rally to essentially reset the point, so, even against people who hit on the rise, it's not a useless shot ;D

VaBeachTennis
11-01-2009, 04:17 PM
With a somewhat flat SW forehand and a hard sliced backhand, I like to moon either side towards my opponent while I approach net. Change of pace, location, spin, speed, and height generally gives me a volleyable ball, which I can place into the open court. Just WW a high finish and clearance over the net by 10', too low for them to overhead, too high to groundie pound. Not worth much if I had normal high bouncing groundies off both sides. But I don't.

I would like that because I would either try to topspin lob you or pass you. "Try" being the key word. ;)

Steady Eddy
11-01-2009, 04:17 PM
Years ago I ran into an opponent in a tournament who was determined to moonball me. I feel that I am a steady player and played my regular game. We were about evenly matched, but he won the first set 7-5. I resumed playing my regular style and fell behind in the second set. Then I remembered that Vic Braden recommended pulling a baseliner to the net and drilling him. I did that, I could tell he hated being at the net. The strategy worked and I came from behind to take the second set, and won the third set easily.

Since then, I've felt guilty about hitting at him while he was at the net, because I think lobbing him would have worked as well. But the point is, that for many players, being at the net isn't an advantage, it's the place where they can be beaten. Hit a short ball to bring them to the net. (If they put away your short ball, then you're in trouble.) But if they just return the short ball, you'll probably win. Even if they keep retreating to the baseline. They'll get tired pretty fast running up and back for each shot. Eventually, they'll stay at the net. They probably aren't a threat at the net, or they would have been looking for opportunities to go there already. Some people say, "Go up to the net yourself." but I think that's usually a mistake. It's easier to have them at the net, then you can: pass them, drill them, or lob them. That's where they're vulnerable, at the net, not back at the baseline.

xFullCourtTenniSx
11-01-2009, 04:58 PM
Well I've only been playing about a year now; I'll get better as I play more. Plus, I'm going to a D3 school, so I'll still get a fair bit of playing time.

Well then you aren't a 4.5... :shock:

If you hit a good drop shot and a good moonball I don't think they would really control the point, plus your point about public courts

At a 5.5+ level, you easily could. The thing is, against the faster 5.5s with better passing shots at that level, you would probably lose the point either way because no matter what shot you play, unless you caught them off guard with your shot selection, they can chase the ball down and hit a great passing shot off of it. Then again, you're at the net so you can cover about half of what they throw at you if you guess right.

The thing is I'm always ticked off when I see high school players face a drop shot and put up a weak "just get it in" reply... If they only anticipated a little, split stepped, and focused, they'd realize they have more time than they think, and can easily put in a great reply. At the net, you open up many options. You can play the deep one down the line, a deep one crosscourt (and easily get both of those shots into the corner), a sharp angle crosscourt, or a dropshot to either side. Now, if you get there even faster, you have the option of playing with topspin and rolling the ball into those corners or at an angle with more pace.

People try to drop shot me all the time and most of the time I get a winner or force an error from that position because I focus on depth and placement. When you think of it that way, you really have so much room to easily hit into, creating a lot of court for your opponent to cover (and most of the time they don't expect to cover that much court because they stepped inside the court looking for the short reply). In a big point during high school varsity tryouts, my friend (former varsity; new coach so EVERYONE had to try out again) played a drop shot on me. Had he won that point the whole match would've gone his way. I ran up there as fast as I could, and got there early enough to roll the ball deep down the line. He was in no man's land looking for the weak response, and he barely got a racket on the ball and sent it way out. It wasn't even a bad drop shot. I was well out of position behind the baseline, he kept the ball short and had plenty of underspin. But I wasn't off balance so I could easily get to it quickly enough and do something with it.

The only time I don't win a point after someone drop shots me is when they played it at the right moment (when I'm off balance) and disguised it very well. In this case, I'm off balance so I can't explode into every direction as easily, I wasn't even looking for the drop shot or any kind of slice, and as a result I'll be lucky to get a racket on it unless I was already inside the baseline. A moonball isn't going to put your opponent off balance, and a good response will give them plenty of time to recover their balance if it actually did upset their balance.

It's not just about using a drop shot when the opponent is out of position, but when they are off balance. When people are balanced and determined to get to every shot, they can pretty much easily get a racket on any ball they put their minds to. In addition to that, they'll find that they actually have more time than they think, and can do a lot more with the ball. As long as I'm focused, I can even get to balls that hit the net and land on my side, and have even gotten winners off of those because I got there so quickly. It's all about paying attention, and using that first quick reaction step.

Granted, I learned this general response to drop shots from Federer. I saw him easily get to one or two and roll the ball in for a winner from below the net or push it deep. This is why Federer and Nadal can reach so many balls and put something on them - their incredible sense of balance. I've never seen anybody else who's looked so balanced on the court while moving and chasing everything down. You look at Federer when he moves, and it looks so simple and easy. That's because it is! When you're always on balance, moving at full speed isn't that hard because you're in full control of every part of your body. And when Nadal moves, it's more difficult to see it, but occasionally you'll get glimpses of how great his balance is (like him hitting winners off his knees and ***** against Federer). I have never been so amazed by anyone else's ability to move to the ball. I mean, have you ever noticed that a lot of shots where he seems to be on the full run for his racket is already back when he's maybe 5 to 10 feet away from the ball and he's still moving at full speed? Then when he gets to the ball he comfortably hits a clean shot. If you look at most other people, they're pumping both arms when they run then when they get there (or are 5 feet away), they stretch out their hand and racket and just reach for the ball and pop it back into the court. There's no real racket movement there. It's just a block or a snap. For Federer it's a push or a roll.

And I REALLY wish they'd make public courts bigger... It's a pain in the *** when you can't back up all the way to hit a moonball, forcing you to hit a shot you shouldn't have to, or when an angled shot gets to the fence when you could've easily gotten it back when nothing else was in your way. Whether you'd still win the point is unclear, but at least you'd've had a chance if those stupid fences weren't there. I mean, it's great running your opponent into fences on serves and wide shots, but you kind of feel that things would be better (and more fun) if you had more room to play with.

Falloutjr
11-01-2009, 05:03 PM
Well then you aren't a 4.5... :shock:



At a 5.5+ level, you easily could. The thing is, against the faster 5.5s with better passing shots at that level, you would probably lose the point either way because no matter what shot you play, unless you caught them off guard with your shot selection, they can chase the ball down and hit a great passing shot off of it. Then again, you're at the net so you can cover about half of what they throw at you if you guess right.

The thing is I'm always ticked off when I see high school players face a drop shot and put up a weak "just get it in" reply... If they only anticipated a little, split stepped, and focused, they'd realize they have more time than they think, and can easily put in a great reply. At the net, you open up many options. You can play the deep one down the line, a deep one crosscourt (and easily get both of those shots into the corner), a sharp angle crosscourt, or a dropshot to either side. Now, if you get there even faster, you have the option of playing with topspin and rolling the ball into those corners or at an angle with more pace.

People try to drop shot me all the time and most of the time I get a winner or force an error from that position because I focus on depth and placement. When you think of it that way, you really have so much room to easily hit into, creating a lot of court for your opponent to cover (and most of the time they don't expect to cover that much court because they stepped inside the court looking for the short reply). In a big point during high school varsity tryouts, my friend (former varsity; new coach so EVERYONE had to try out again) played a drop shot on me. Had he won that point the whole match would've gone his way. I ran up there as fast as I could, and got there early enough to roll the ball deep down the line. He was in no man's land looking for the weak response, and he barely got a racket on the ball and sent it way out. It wasn't even a bad drop shot. I was well out of position behind the baseline, he kept the ball short and had plenty of underspin. But I wasn't off balance so I could easily get to it quickly enough and do something with it.

The only time I don't win a point after someone drop shots me is when they played it at the right moment (when I'm off balance) and disguised it very well. In this case, I'm off balance so I can't explode into every direction as easily, I wasn't even looking for the drop shot or any kind of slice, and as a result I'll be lucky to get a racket on it unless I was already inside the baseline. A moonball isn't going to put your opponent off balance, and a good response will give them plenty of time to recover their balance if it actually did upset their balance.

It's not just about using a drop shot when the opponent is out of position, but when they are off balance. When people are balanced and determined to get to every shot, they can pretty much easily get a racket on any ball they put their minds to. In addition to that, they'll find that they actually have more time than they think, and can do a lot more with the ball. As long as I'm focused, I can even get to balls that hit the net and land on my side, and have even gotten winners off of those because I got there so quickly. It's all about paying attention, and using that first quick reaction step.

Granted, I learned this general response to drop shots from Federer. I saw him easily get to one or two and roll the ball in for a winner from below the net or push it deep. This is why Federer and Nadal can reach so many balls and put something on them - their incredible sense of balance. I've never seen anybody else who's looked so balanced on the court while moving and chasing everything down. You look at Federer when he moves, and it looks so simple and easy. That's because it is! When you're always on balance, moving at full speed isn't that hard because you're in full control of every part of your body. And when Nadal moves, it's more difficult to see it, but occasionally you'll get glimpses of how great his balance is (like him hitting winners off his knees and ***** against Federer). I have never been so amazed by anyone else's ability to move to the ball. I mean, have you ever noticed that a lot of shots where he seems to be on the full run for his racket is already back when he's maybe 5 to 10 feet away from the ball and he's still moving at full speed? Then when he gets to the ball he comfortably hits a clean shot. If you look at most other people, they're pumping both arms when they run then when they get there (or are 5 feet away), they stretch out their hand and racket and just reach for the ball and pop it back into the court. There's no real racket movement there. It's just a block or a snap. For Federer it's a push or a roll.

And I REALLY wish they'd make public courts bigger... It's a pain in the *** when you can't back up all the way to hit a moonball, forcing you to hit a shot you shouldn't have to, or when an angled shot gets to the fence when you could've easily gotten it back when nothing else was in your way. Whether you'd still win the point is unclear, but at least you'd've had a chance if those stupid fences weren't there. I mean, it's great running your opponent into fences on serves and wide shots, but you kind of feel that things would be better (and more fun) if you had more room to play with.

Lol I've been playing about 4-5 hours nearly every day (maybe a day or two when it's snowing too hard) and I can compete with the best high school players in the city who are about high 4.5-low 5.0 and take sets from them, so I must not be too far off from them, no?

xFullCourtTenniSx
11-01-2009, 05:07 PM
Lol I've been playing about 4-5 hours nearly every day (maybe a day or two when it's snowing too hard) and I can compete with the best high school players in the city who are about high 4.5-low 5.0 and take sets from them, so I must not be too far off from them, no?

4.0 maybe... 4.5 in one year is just wtf no matter how you look at it. 4.5 is pretty much completely solid tennis. After that you never beat yourself anymore. You can hit moderately hard all day long and still not beat yourself.

Falloutjr
11-01-2009, 05:18 PM
4.0 maybe... 4.5 in one year is just wtf no matter how you look at it. 4.5 is pretty much completely solid tennis. After that you never beat yourself anymore. You can hit moderately hard all day long and still not beat yourself.

When I WANT to, I can hit hard. I can rip backhands and get some moderate pace on forehands, with both having good amounts depth and topspin that keep me from hitting long. I just choose not to play power baseline unless it's obvious they can't handle it or my moonballing and retrieving and speed isn't holding up. You can tell from my racquet and string choices power isn't my first choice. Playing defense and being consistent is my first choice.

Steady Eddy
11-01-2009, 05:30 PM
And I REALLY wish they'd make public courts bigger... It's a pain in the *** when you can't back up all the way to hit a moonball,
You're supposed to get 21 feet behind the baseline. This means that sometimes, against topspin lobs is one example, you don't want to let it bounce because it will hop into the back fence and hit the fence too high for you to reach. You need to hit these on the rise or before the bounce. I think of that being part of the game. In the rare event that there isn't even 21 feet between the baseline and the back fence, then there is something wrong with the court, but otherwise you have to figure out a way to deal with the lack of room back there.

xFullCourtTenniSx
11-02-2009, 12:08 AM
When I WANT to, I can hit hard. I can rip backhands and get some moderate pace on forehands, with both having good amounts depth and topspin that keep me from hitting long. I just choose not to play power baseline unless it's obvious they can't handle it or my moonballing and retrieving and speed isn't holding up. You can tell from my racquet and string choices power isn't my first choice. Playing defense and being consistent is my first choice.

Hmmm... 65 pounds poly suggests power hitting... -.- High tensions are for power hitters. Low tensions are for consistent players (because they use so much spin the can handle the extra pop). I currently use high 40s to low 50s because my strokes generate more than enough control to handle it, so it's free pop for me. Also, my racket's a bit on the light side, so it needs a little bump up in power. But after a certain point, tension doesn't mean anything because players become so consistent in their shots, the only thing tension reflects is their hitting style and the weight of the racket they use.

And you CAN hit what you THINK is hard. To better players, it's just a rally ball at most. I can hit hard, but to 5.5s it's just a rally ball. Even my best kill shot is probably not that much faster than a 6.0 rally ball.

I thought I hit insanely hard 1 year into the game, and compared to people around me, it was hard. But it's nothing compared to what I can generate now. Against low intermediates, that would've been a slightly above average shot. Now, my rally balls are above what I hit back then.

And I remember a pusher who thought he could hit hard... It was more or less equivalent to a normal rally ball at that level... -.-

Everything is from perspective. The bigger your perspective, the more accurate your relative description becomes. Like, if you compared your hardest shots to everyone else's that plays tennis, you'll find that you hit a pretty slow shot. Moderate pace would be the most correct description. But if you only compared it to maybe one person who hits weaker than you, then you're an incredibly hard hitter. This is why so many people overrate themselves, because they don't know what hard hitting is.

You're supposed to get 21 feet behind the baseline. This means that sometimes, against topspin lobs is one example, you don't want to let it bounce because it will hop into the back fence and hit the fence too high for you to reach. You need to hit these on the rise or before the bounce. I think of that being part of the game. In the rare event that there isn't even 21 feet between the baseline and the back fence, then there is something wrong with the court, but otherwise you have to figure out a way to deal with the lack of room back there.

Oh I can handle moonballs well enough as it is. I'm just saying, it'd be 10x more comfortable to hit one from well behind the baseline, farther than what public courts allow you. I can take them on the rise, after the peak, and maybe in the air (I can certainly hit a classic volley but I rarely experiment with drive volleys though I should). It's ALWAYS more comfortable to take the ball on the drop than on the rise.

I'm not saying I CAN'T handle moonballs because of the room I don't have, but that it'd be more fun and comfortable if you can play like Nadal and play very far behind the baseline and rip on the ball all day long with lots of height and topspin.

GuyClinch
11-02-2009, 03:23 AM
Moonballs are great shots to win with. They really screw up women. Not that many posters have trouble with the fairer sex but if your playing mixed or something - it's easy points. Just hit moonballs to the backhand side.

But moonballs - they won't earn you friends. I have found that vast majority of tennis players want to return balls that travel low over the net with pace. If you use pace and these kind of shots to beat them - you are considered a good player.

Any other kind of tatic is considered "cheap" whether drop shots and lobs or moonballs or short slice junk and so on. Likewise if you try to get yourself 'rated' on this I'd say you lose several rating points if you post any moonballs in your rating video.

Pete

nfor304
11-02-2009, 03:37 AM
Players dont moonball anymore because any decent player will destroy a slow-medium pace shoulder high ball, even from a few feet behind the baseline.

Moonballing worked back in the days of eastern and continental grips where it was more difficult for players to control high balls, but now any player using a semi western or western grip forehand will just be all over a shoulder high ball.

Moonballing also gives players a lot of time to take a full swing and to set up to hit a decent shot.

Djokovicfan4life
11-02-2009, 04:25 AM
One of the girls on the OSU team is very good at this. She backs them up to the fence until they hit a short ball and then puts it away with a swing volley.

I would not exactly categorize her as a pusher, so it's definitely not a purely defensive tactic.

Golden Retriever
11-02-2009, 05:04 AM
My moonballs clear the net by 20 feet and land a foot from the baseline. Good luck with that :)

Man, thats higher than my lobs!! If you really could do that consistently you are virtually unbeatable at the amateur level.

5263
11-02-2009, 05:40 AM
I'm not asking people to say that moonballers are the GOATs. I'm just saying not to dismiss them as a player simply because they don't adhere to the purist's idea of tennis players.

Nothing gets respected like results. If you are winning this way, you will get respect. Yes, some will grumble, but there will be respect for a regular winner. They will even come up with special reasons why you win, like having unbelievable footspeed or timing.

blakesq
11-02-2009, 06:47 AM
That bears repeating: Nothing gets respected like results!

Nothing gets respected like results. If you are winning this way, you will get respect. Yes, some will grumble, but there will be respect for a regular winner. They will even come up with special reasons why you win, like having unbelievable footspeed or timing.

jazzyfunkybluesy
11-02-2009, 09:45 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzyfunkybluesy
I like to run up and smash a moon ball so they know not to try that old crap again.

How would you run up? If it's hit with topspin, it's not going to be so slow that you can just run up and smash it before the bounce, unless you were already approaching the net before they hit the ball.

If its hit with topspin its not a moonball its a big topspin shot.
A moonball is hit high with no spin usually by a lame player.

split-step
11-02-2009, 09:52 AM
My tennis buddy and I have both played this guy in our league who plays this style.
My friend insists he is a pusher. I insist he plays a smart game.
My friend has lost to him 2ce. I have beaten him in straight sets 2ce.

He is able to resort to more aggressive tactics when his moonballing doesn't yield desired results (i.e when he plays me)

split-step
11-02-2009, 09:53 AM
If its hit with topspin its not a moonball its a big topspin shot.

Moonballs are hit with topspin.

Cup8489
11-02-2009, 12:22 PM
The irony is that you will beat most high school kids by rolling back moonballs (a few good ones will punish it) but every one will look down on you for doing it.

In fact, if you go to 12-13 year old tournaments, you will see kids doing this a lot.

this is true. when i was in high school, the kid ranked 1 below me on varsity did not much other than moonball his opponents. We usually played two meets with a school, home and away. When i played a particular kid who had a booming serve and extremely aggressive ground game, i got blown off the court. but because the kid below me, Wyn, was fast, he just moonballed the guy until he broke his only racket and forefeited in frustration.

Wyn did get alot of flak for the tactic, though. But, if it works, why not use it?

gameboy
11-02-2009, 12:42 PM
I am sorry, but there is no way in hell this kid is 4.5 or 4.0 with playing moonball for a year. You may be playing competitive with other kids, but they probably are not 4.0 either.

You may be able to get away with hitting moonballs against high school players, majority of whom are impatient and just likes to hit hard. But you would get crushed by any decent experienced 4.0 USTA players.

Cindysphinx
11-02-2009, 12:48 PM
Moonballs are great shots to win with. They really screw up women. Not that many posters have trouble with the fairer sex but if your playing mixed or something - it's easy points. Just hit moonballs to the backhand side.

But moonballs - they won't earn you friends. I have found that vast majority of tennis players want to return balls that travel low over the net with pace. If you use pace and these kind of shots to beat them - you are considered a good player.

Any other kind of tatic is considered "cheap" whether drop shots and lobs or moonballs or short slice junk and so on. Likewise if you try to get yourself 'rated' on this I'd say you lose several rating points if you post any moonballs in your rating video.

Pete

I have climbed back into matches with topspin moonballs, especially against short women. If you can hit a good moonball to them at the baseline and then run to the service line, they are completely helpless. They can't hit a passing shot because the ball is too high. They can lob, but their control won't be great. This assumes they reach the ball at all because our matches are indoors and the back wall is very close. Few are willing to take it out of the air or hit on the rise, so point for me.

boojay
11-02-2009, 01:03 PM
For sure moonballing is a valid and quite effective strategy at the 3.5 and below levels. I see it all the time from beginner players. There are even 4.0 pushers that utilize this strategy to great effect. Once you hit 4.5 and up though, you're just begging to get crushed. Sounds to me like OP has come up with a game plan that works for him at his current level.

eagle
11-02-2009, 01:25 PM
Kudos to you for having a strategy in mind in playing matches.

Unfortunately though, you'd have a tougher time with more advanced players in the college ranks. With 80-90% lobs on your forehands as you mentioned, I'd suggest you start using it more sparingly and playing the more conventional strokes.

BTW, I think you've mentioned in another thread that you don't have a camcorder. But if you manage to borrow one, try to get a vid of your matches. It'd be interesting to see the precision and control with which you win matches by showering your opponents with lobs.

r,
eagle

GuyClinch
11-02-2009, 01:49 PM
I have climbed back into matches with topspin moonballs, especially against short women. If you can hit a good moonball to them at the baseline and then run to the service line, they are completely helpless. They can't hit a passing shot because the ball is too high. They can lob, but their control won't be great. This assumes they reach the ball at all because our matches are indoors and the back wall is very close. Few are willing to take it out of the air or hit on the rise, so point for me.

Yup. I can tell you have played alot of indoor tennis. That and a nice slice serve that lands short but wide - net tangle time. Both shots make the other player look foolish. That's of course why people don't like moonballs. People don't seem to hate the slice serve as much.. That's more "impressive" for whatever reason.

It's interesting the psychology of tennis. Your opponent wants to win sure.. But most players want to feel like 'good' players when they are out there on the court. This is why they all love hitting with pros. Pros give them pace right in their hitting zone and every player looks much better with that.

OTOH the junk you get playing mixed doubles - my god. I have to admit it can be a little bit frustrating. My buddy who is little bit better then me (maybe a 4.0 or a strong 3.5) quit our winter group all together because he couldn't take it.

It can actually drive players out of tennis.. so be careful who you moonball. It's a shame too because a moonball is actually a higher skilled shot, IMHO. Its not your normal slice or topspin forehand push shot (not some driving slice like Santoro but a gravity reliant shot).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R0Jmi739lvM

Classic pro moonballing point. I think Agassi did it one time as well. Notice how they do still take pretty decent cuts at the ball. Its not a dink shot. Beginners - they usually hit dink lobs which aren't moonballs, IMHO.
Pete

Blake0
11-02-2009, 01:58 PM
Moonballing will only take you to a certain level..almost impossible to go up any higher from there..same thing as pushing although pushing will get you stuck at a lower level.

In D Zone
11-02-2009, 02:20 PM
played against guys in doubles - one is a steady 4.0 player while his partner is a moonballer (i cannot say he's a 4.0 - because he hits only lobs and taps the ball back). My older partner who is a solid 4.0 got so bored he start messing around - we ended up loosing the tie breaker.

It's an ugly game but these pair won the tournament. Yes, the match was awefully long and slow - lob after lob ... very boring to watch and even play.

Falloutjr
11-02-2009, 03:41 PM
Moonballing will only take you to a certain level..almost impossible to go up any higher from there..same thing as pushing although pushing will get you stuck at a lower level.

Like I said, I can play more than moonballs, but there are times when I'll hit moonballs for 4-5 shots in a row to try and get my opponent to hit up a weak lob in return that I can smash or hit an error I don't moonball 100% of the time. I can still rally and play normal tennis, it's just I use offensive lobs more than the average player is all. Maybe that's not what one would call a true moonballer I suppose because I don't really see it at all these days so I assumed anyone who used them to any extent on a regular basis was a moonballer. But I'm from Ohio and during sectionals I was watching a few matches before I was up for my own and there are actually quite a few moonballers. There were even a couple on my team (they graduated last season). So maybe I'm understanding it wrong and moonballers are players who do nothing but lob all game.

Cindysphinx
11-02-2009, 03:50 PM
Yup. I can tell you have played alot of indoor tennis. That and a nice slice serve that lands short but wide - net tangle time. Both shots make the other player look foolish. That's of course why people don't like moonballs. People don't seem to hate the slice serve as much.. That's more "impressive" for whatever reason.

It's interesting the psychology of tennis. Your opponent wants to win sure.. But most players want to feel like 'good' players when they are out there on the court. This is why they all love hitting with pros. Pros give them pace right in their hitting zone and every player looks much better with that.

OTOH the junk you get playing mixed doubles - my god. I have to admit it can be a little bit frustrating. My buddy who is little bit better then me (maybe a 4.0 or a strong 3.5) quit our winter group all together because he couldn't take it.

It can actually drive players out of tennis.. so be careful who you moonball. It's a shame too because a moonball is actually a higher skilled shot, IMHO. Its not your normal slice or topspin forehand push shot (not some driving slice like Santoro but a gravity reliant shot).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R0Jmi739lvM

Classic pro moonballing point. I think Agassi did it one time as well. Notice how they do still take pretty decent cuts at the ball. Its not a dink shot. Beginners - they usually hit dink lobs which aren't moonballs, IMHO.
Pete

Oh, I don't care if some 4.0 or 3.5 guy doesn't like moonballs or lobs or whatever. I tend not to moonball in mixed because the guys are often taller and have stronger overheads, so my margin is smaller. But often the lob is my only option against a guy if he is being a nuisance at net. Just take his partner's (hopefully weak) serve and send it to Jupiter. Then I can run in and hope his partner freaks out.

I know I sure hate when opponents do it to me!

xFullCourtTenniSx
11-02-2009, 04:02 PM
Players dont moonball anymore because any decent player will destroy a slow-medium pace shoulder high ball, even from a few feet behind the baseline.

Moonballing worked back in the days of eastern and continental grips where it was more difficult for players to control high balls, but now any player using a semi western or western grip forehand will just be all over a shoulder high ball.

Moonballing also gives players a lot of time to take a full swing and to set up to hit a decent shot.

Haha. So true. I could take full swings on lobs with a full western grip even if the ball landed on the baseline. Though now I use an eastern grip, and I can do the same. It's just that I have be more precise in my footwork and timing since it's a little tougher to pull it off with an eastern grip (although still very possible, cause I've ripped on people heavily for throwing up high topspin shots on me that didn't have enough pace). Once someone develops the balls to take it on the rise with a full swing, the moonballer is screwed.

My tennis buddy and I have both played this guy in our league who plays this style.
My friend insists he is a pusher. I insist he plays a smart game.
My friend has lost to him 2ce. I have beaten him in straight sets 2ce.

He is able to resort to more aggressive tactics when his moonballing doesn't yield desired results (i.e when he plays me)

Step one to beating the moonballer/pusher - Accept their strategy as a legitimate, yet poor one.

Step two - Develop YOUR game plan to counter it effectively.

Step three - Execute it and DESTROY THEM!

Step four - Shake hands at net knowing they'll never learn...

Moonballs are great shots to win with. They really screw up women. Not that many posters have trouble with the fairer sex but if your playing mixed or something - it's easy points. Just hit moonballs to the backhand side.

But moonballs - they won't earn you friends. I have found that vast majority of tennis players want to return balls that travel low over the net with pace. If you use pace and these kind of shots to beat them - you are considered a good player.

Any other kind of tatic is considered "cheap" whether drop shots and lobs or moonballs or short slice junk and so on. Likewise if you try to get yourself 'rated' on this I'd say you lose several rating points if you post any moonballs in your rating video.

Pete

I prefer the moonball. It gives me more time to hit my forehand, and I can hit high over the net with heavy spin. On a low, hard ball, I need to bend my knees well, and play a flatter shot.

jazzyfunkybluesy
11-02-2009, 06:03 PM
So to rap things up if you moon ball you are a pusher, probably rated no higher than 3.5 and a big stinking tuna puss.:twisted:

boojay
11-02-2009, 06:13 PM
So to rap things up if you moon ball you are a pusher, probably rated no higher than 3.5 and a big stinking tuna puss.:twisted:

Ok, that part you added yourself. :)

NickH87
11-02-2009, 06:26 PM
Basically a pusher...there was a video on here like a month ago of a girl playing singles moonballing everything until there was one short ball, then went for an approach and volley.

Falloutjr
11-02-2009, 07:28 PM
Well, despite your guy's lack of belief in moonballing and a general dislike of spinny players in general, I'm gonna take ownership of it and become very solid with my WW FH and my slice 1hbh and my moonballs and "safe, pushing, defensive, retrieving" game. I shouldn't change what I enjoy the most and what I'm most comfortable with just because my opponents don't like it. If they don't like it, they can find a way to beat it and make me go back to my loopy topspin and slice groundstrokes and hit normal rallies or they can quit. In fun matches and sets, I won't lob on a regular basis, but that's what works for me and it wins, so I'll stick with it :)

Sometimes I don't have that killer instinct and I get kinda irked when I see my opponent's getting ticked off by my tactics but after reading some threads about moonballing from a few years back on this thread and how annoyed people get with it, I sort of get a perverse enjoyment out of knowing how much it irritates impatient, purist losers. Maybe if I continue to master it and build my game around it, it will be very successful for me in college, and I'm glad this thread evolved from a simple question to something that helped me take a step forward in developing my tennis philosophy because I haven't been playing very long and sometimes it's hard to find your identity when you're new to something, but I think I've found it!

callen3615
11-02-2009, 07:36 PM
LOL, ok. Go for it.

nfor304
11-02-2009, 07:42 PM
My moonballs clear the net by 20 feet and land a foot from the baseline. Good luck with that :)

If your shots are really clearing the net by 20 feet than you cant be hitting with much pace or spin. Nadal's rally strokes dont even clear the net by that height, and he puts more spin on the ball than any player ever.

20 feet is pretty much the height of the fence surrounding the court.

Falloutjr
11-02-2009, 07:57 PM
If your shots are really clearing the net by 20 feet than you cant be hitting with much pace or spin. Nadal's rally strokes dont even clear the net by that height, and he puts more spin on the ball than any player ever.

20 feet is pretty much the height of the fence surrounding the court.

Nope, they don't have pace, but they have a ton of spin. You're under the assumption I'm hitting WW forehands and whatnot. I'm talking about swinging straight up with a ton of topspin and lobbing. I hit the ball so it's very high, very deep, and bounces high, but I almost never hit lobs that land more than 2 feet in front of the baseline. If my opponent's let the ball bounce, my balls hit the fence about 5-6 feet up on a regular basis. On some balls, I've managed to clear the fence a few times with balls that landed in, and a few more missing by about 3-4 inches. So it's not a standard heavy topspin forehand, it's more lob-like.

My forehands I switch between moonballs to WW FHs that clear the net by about 8 or 9 feet and land between 1-2 feet behind the service line to 1-2 feet in front of the baseline and my flatter forehands which I still spin and have 3 or 4 feet over the net but have a much flatter trajectory and more pace. My backhands I alternate between lobs, topspin, and backspins, but I hit "flat" backhands more regularly than I hit "flat" forehands.

Vyse
11-02-2009, 08:08 PM
your the kind of player id enjoy throwing my racket at. if you did this to me, i would probably either do that sam eot you or hit with so little pace you would be jsut as annoyed with me. what a match that would be

boojay
11-02-2009, 08:11 PM
Well, despite your guy's lack of belief in moonballing and a general dislike of spinny players in general, I'm gonna take ownership of it and become very solid with my WW FH and my slice 1hbh and my moonballs and "safe, pushing, defensive, retrieving" game.

I'm pretty confident no one said that and you just put that in there yourself, but there's definitely nothing wrong with the strategy you've decided to adopt. In fact, I commend you for finding a style that suits you best considering you haven't been playing long as you say. Just know that you're limiting yourself to the 3.5-4.0 range or lower and will be hard pressed to get any better than that.

Besides, the tennis world needs pushers, for better or worse. It's a rite of passage for other players who want to get better and without pushers, there wouldn't be any stepping stones available to get to that next level. I don't often hear of people striving to become pushers, but I guess you can consider yourself as being necessary for the improvement of others, a punching bag, if you will.

Falloutjr
11-02-2009, 08:19 PM
I'm pretty confident no one said that and you just put that in there yourself, but there's definitely nothing wrong with the strategy you've decided to adopt. In fact, I commend you for finding a style that suits you best considering you haven't been playing long as you say. Just know that you're limiting yourself to the 3.5-4.0 range or lower and will be hard pressed to get any better than that.

Besides, the tennis world needs pushers, for better or worse. It's a rite of passage for other players who want to get better and without pushers, there wouldn't be any stepping stones available to get to that next level. I don't often hear of people striving to become pushers, but I guess you can consider yourself as being necessary for the improvement of others, a punching bag, if you will.

Lol pushing is a very negative term. You're implying I can't hit a winner or play "real" tennis, and I can, but counterpunching and retrieving is what feels natural, so it's what I'll stick with in general. And I don't care if people say im a 3.5, if I beat 4.5's 65% of the time, I would be the greatest 3.5 in the history of tennis, no? ;)

And actually, in my experiences, most people aren't terribly enthusiastic about playing people who use spins over flatter shots on a regular basis. It's a hard knock life :o

yonexxx
11-02-2009, 08:24 PM
So basically what you're saying is that you're a pusher and you want to be more respected.
way to stick it to him lmao

boojay
11-02-2009, 08:31 PM
Lol pushing is a very negative term. You're implying I can't hit a winner or play "real" tennis, and I can, but counterpunching and retrieving is what feels natural, so it's what I'll stick with in general. And I don't care if people say im a 3.5, if I beat 4.5's 65% of the time, I would be the greatest 3.5 in the history of tennis, no? ;)

And actually, in my experiences, most people aren't terribly enthusiastic about playing people who use spins over flatter shots on a regular basis. It's a hard knock life :o

Therein lies the catch. Most likely you aren't beating 4.5s or have never played a 4.5. You may think you are, but in reality you're probably beating beginner players who have no idea how to counter that type of shot. Even decent 4.0s would have no trouble negating your moonballs. Trust me, you're not playing against 4.5s no matter badly you want it to be true. A real 4.5 would not even give you the chance to hit that type of shot because he'd have you running all over the place gasping for air and attempting to hit futile moonballs that will clear the fence before it even bounces.

Falloutjr
11-02-2009, 08:41 PM
Therein lies the catch. Most likely you aren't beating 4.5s or have never played a 4.5. You may think you are, but in reality you're probably beating beginner players who have no idea how to counter that type of shot. Even decent 4.0s would have no trouble negating your moonballs. Trust me, you're not playing against 4.5s no matter badly you want it to be true. A real 4.5 would not even give you the chance to hit that type of shot because he'd have you running all over the place gasping for air and attempting to hit futile moonballs that will clear the fence before it even bounces.

I play with players that are pretty good, actually. They are top players on their team, travel for tournaments, and have some interest from college coaches. A couple players from my school system who just graduated are playing tennis at DII schools, and there's a few more who will be playing DII tennis, and I know that tennis isn't a huge sport in Ohio, but playing DII is still pretty respectable IMO, and they don't demolish me. Beat me, usually, but I still play em well and take sets from em. As for the running, I consider it cardio 8P I don't mind running down the angle shots and drop shots.

boojay
11-02-2009, 08:53 PM
I play with players that are pretty good, actually. They are top players on their team, travel for tournaments, and have some interest from college coaches. A couple players from my school system who just graduated are playing tennis at DII schools, and there's a few more who will be playing DII tennis, and I know that tennis isn't a huge sport in Ohio, but playing DII is still pretty respectable IMO, and they don't demolish me. Beat me, usually, but I still play em well and take sets from em. As for the running, I consider it cardio 8P I don't mind running down the angle shots and drop shots.

Well good for you, that's great. I'm not familiar with high school tennis in the States, particularly from your area, but I can assure you, you're not playing at a level as high as you think. You can provide us with visual proof by posting a video and prove me wrong, but chances are you'd be in for a rude awakening. Anyway, good luck with your game and maybe someday you can aspire to reach the level you think you're at.

user92626
11-02-2009, 09:10 PM
I kinda see the merit in the moonball strategy because lately I have been playing against & with this new guy in the group who uses very high net clearance & virtually no spin FH. Last weekend I teamed up with him and easily beat two teams. Basically, he retrieved and moonballed back almost every shot. It worked pretty well because the other teams did not have decent overhead and absolutely no winner-type forehand. They either mishit on their bh or returned very weak and I simply ran up and cranked a FH for a winner or caused forced errors on them. Howeve I also constantly (unsolicitedly) reminded him to "lob" deeper. LOL.

On the other hand I also enjoy having this lobby-FH guy on opposite team as well. I am a base-line player and enjoy every opportunity to try to crank a pacey ts FH; and he provides a lot of those opportunities.

It's easy to hit a pacey, topspin FH off of a lob but it's not as easy vice versa.

Cody
11-02-2009, 11:32 PM
Well good for you, that's great. I'm not familiar with high school tennis in the States, particularly from your area, but I can assure you, you're not playing at a level as high as you think. You can provide us with visual proof by posting a video and prove me wrong, but chances are you'd be in for a rude awakening. Anyway, good luck with your game and maybe someday you can aspire to reach the level you think you're at.

Yes, please post a vid

I'm not looking to judge your tennis game in any negative way but i'm curious about this moonball strategy and what it looks like.

moroni
11-03-2009, 02:26 AM
i switch to a pusher when i get tired until i get a little less tired so after two hourz of hitting in a match a would push for 30 minz then get agressive again ... so this is wt i can tell you about these thirty mins

1:I dont have my serves broken (not more precentage than normal play)
2: I have verry effective slices very penetrating .. my drops and lops are verry effective too.(i fact in these 30 mins my friends refer to me AS 'only slice"
3:I apply a game of serve and volley to shorten rallies
4:hit first serve 85% of full power and hit slice serves on duece more as it aids volleying

NOW 5&6 are the most important points

I HATE IT AND SO DOES MY OPPONENTS
it is extremely boring and DULL

so do i hate playing pushers ? yes .. cuz its not 100% about winning but also about fun

is it not tennis / illegal to be a pusher?
NO,but it is sinfully boring

GuyClinch
11-03-2009, 03:31 AM
A real moonball has a ton of spin. I think some people are confusing them with simple lobs. A very spinny moonball isn't so easy for an opponent to handle, IMHO.

eagle
11-03-2009, 03:52 AM
A real moonball has a ton of spin. I think some people are confusing them with simple lobs. A very spinny moonball isn't so easy for an opponent to handle, IMHO.

Pros, coaches, and tour commentators call them lobs vs. moonballs. For example, they say topspin lob and not topspin moonball.

r,
eagle

GuyClinch
11-03-2009, 04:57 AM
The terminology is not perfect - I have heard pros refer to them as topspin lobs or moonballs. But my point is that they SHOULD have alot of topspin - that is all.

One poster said that his partner hit a low spin forehand - that's not a moonball or a topspin lob.

split-step
11-03-2009, 05:58 AM
A real moonball has a ton of spin. I think some people are confusing them with simple lobs. A very spinny moonball isn't so easy for an opponent to handle, IMHO.

Depends on your level. I'm a 4.5 player and haven't faced a moonball that I found difficult to hit on the rise.
I stay just behind the baseline and don't give up position so if it is very deep I will simply hit a half volley groundstroke from the baseline.
I can't imagine a 4.5 player being too troubled by moonballs.

Now the tactics a moonballer will employ, if the moonballer is VERY good, and has a lot of other more aggressive shots in his arsenal, can get him wins at a high level.

Case in Point:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oVwlZApl8dk

Falloutjr
11-03-2009, 06:06 AM
Depends on your level. I'm a 4.5 player and haven't faced a moonball that I found difficult to hit on the rise.
I stay just behind the baseline and don't give up position so if it is very deep I will simply hit a half volley groundstroke from the baseline.
I can't imagine a 4.5 player being too troubled by moonballs.

Now the tactics a moonballer will employ, if the moonballer is VERY good, and has a lot of other more aggressive shots in his arsenal, can get him wins at a high level.

Case in Point:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oVwlZApl8dk

Her lobs are pathetic though I'd never hit a lob at the service line lmao. But it is somewhat similar to what I do; lob then attack the very first chance I get. Notice how she's standing quite a few feet behind the baseline. Just angle off one of her flat shots or hit a drop shot and its over. Then when she loses respect for your lobs, lob again :) easysauce

split-step
11-03-2009, 06:11 AM
Her lobs are pathetic though I'd never hit a lob at the service line lmao.

You fail for this. She would eat you alive with her 'pathetic' lobs.
Pls post a video of your lobs, otherwise refrain from calling top pros lobs that would leave you clueless, 'pathetic'.

Falloutjr
11-03-2009, 06:13 AM
You fail for this. She would eat you alive with her 'pathetic' lobs.
Pls post a video of your lobs, otherwise refrain from calling top pros lobs that would leave you clueless, 'pathetic'.

1. I worded that wrong, I just think she left a few attackable ones is all.
2. Don't get all defensive, gosh.

split-step
11-03-2009, 06:17 AM
1. I worded that wrong, I just think she left a few attackable ones is all.


She is facing pace that you have never faced. She is playing at a level that you will only reach in your dreams.

Your posts show a lack of understanding. Of course she hit some moonballs at the service line. She was forced into doing so. That's what good players do to you, not the '4.5' :rolleyes: players you've been playing that are giving you weaksauce so you can moonball to the baseline.

Falloutjr
11-03-2009, 06:20 AM
She is facing pace that you have never faced. She is playing at a level that you will only reach in your dreams.

Your posts show a lack of understanding. Of course she hit some moonballs at the service line. She was forced into doing so. That's what good players do to you, not the '4.5' :rolleyes: players you've been playing that are giving you weaksauce so you can moonball to the baseline.

What I understand is you coming to my thread and being rude. I worded my post wrong, and I said sorry, but if you insist on being rude about it, then I ask that you leave.

split-step
11-03-2009, 06:27 AM
What I understand is you coming to my thread and being rude. I worded my post wrong, and I said sorry, but if you insist on being rude about it, then I ask that you leave.

LOL, how old are you?

jazzyfunkybluesy
11-03-2009, 06:42 AM
LOL, how old are you?

Max of 15 years. Mental age?

NickH87
11-03-2009, 07:16 AM
Her lobs are pathetic though I'd never hit a lob at the service line lmao. But it is somewhat similar to what I do; lob then attack the very first chance I get. Notice how she's standing quite a few feet behind the baseline. Just angle off one of her flat shots or hit a drop shot and its over. Then when she loses respect for your lobs, lob again :) easysauce


Can someone find me a video of a serious male player top spin lobbing everything as his main tactic of play??? Or is it only women???? :twisted:

gameboy
11-03-2009, 07:46 AM
Well, enjoy your moonball because it isn't going to last.

In high school you can get away with it because people are forced to play with you and if you are somewhat successful with that tactic, a coach may use you on the team (though in my high school career, I actually never saw a guy use nothing but moonballs).

But you will have problems once high school is over as no one is going to want to play with you. While hitting lob after lob may be an effective strategy, it is quite annoying to everybody else. If people don't have to play with you, they won't and you will be left with ever smaller circle of people who are willing to play with you.

You may be able to play some tournaments, but I doubt that any league team would take you (they still have to practice with you). And ladder players will avoid you like a plague.

You need to learn some real fundamentals.

Falloutjr
11-03-2009, 07:59 AM
Well, enjoy your moonball because it isn't going to last.

In high school you can get away with it because people are forced to play with you and if you are somewhat successful with that tactic, a coach may use you on the team (though in my high school career, I actually never saw a guy use nothing but moonballs).

But you will have problems once high school is over as no one is going to want to play with you. While hitting lob after lob may be an effective strategy, it is quite annoying to everybody else. If people don't have to play with you, they won't and you will be left with ever smaller circle of people who are willing to play with you.

You may be able to play some tournaments, but I doubt that any league team would take you (they still have to practice with you). And ladder players will avoid you like a plague.

You need to learn some real fundamentals.

I still have good groundies though. Just cuz I lob a lot doesn't mean I can't hit the ball. When the time comes for it, I do a good job of it, I just CHOOSE not to 100% of the time. I often go multiple games in a row without hitting a moonball, and some games, it's my main weapon and I pull it out of my bag and use it almost exclusively against people that can't hit it. Just a matter of situations.

shazbot
11-03-2009, 08:03 AM
So 80-90% of your FH's are moonballs (as you stated) and colleges are interested and thinking you would make a good addition to their teams?

Are colleges lowering their standards nowadays?

One would have to think that the moonballing tactic only work on players <4.0. Anything above that and you are wasting peoples time playing with them.

Jmu008
11-03-2009, 11:53 AM
I think the strategy works because it's at the high school level, where players are too afraid to try smashing at baseline. But when you get to the next level, players aren't afraid to punish a moonball with an overhead. Competent serve/volleyers have the skill set necessary to punish moonballers as well.

Jmu008
11-03-2009, 12:01 PM
Sorry for double post but I was interested enough to read on...yea, really, moonballing is a nice strategy at the 4.0 level, but you're not going to go anywhere until you learn control/power.

...And as you no doubt have learned, people hate moonballers. And especially people that claim that moonballing is the greatest tactic in the history of the Earth. Just throwing that out there. :)

Cody
11-03-2009, 12:03 PM
Please post some match play if possible (=.

I would love to see this strategy in action, i have come across a few moonballers but they don't sound as good as it as you do.

Thanks, Cody

enishi1357
11-03-2009, 12:07 PM
I dont think moon balling is bad. I just think whoever hates it probably cant deal with it. I for one am a all rounder. If a moon ball comes my way I just smack it at the baseline and then volley. Cant get any easier than that. easy points too cuz I know they can't attack which make it easier on me mentally

Falloutjr
11-03-2009, 12:46 PM
Please post some match play if possible (=.

I would love to see this strategy in action, i have come across a few moonballers but they don't sound as good as it as you do.

Thanks, Cody

I'll make some footage if I can get a hold of a camera.

Mick
11-03-2009, 12:49 PM
I dont think moon balling is bad. I just think whoever hates it probably cant deal with it. I for one am a all rounder. If a moon ball comes my way I just smack it at the baseline and then volley. Cant get any easier than that. easy points too cuz I know they can't attack which make it easier on me mentally

that is true. if you keep on winning points by smashing the moonballs, your opponent will stop moonballing.

i like playing moonballers because they help me practicing my overhead.

NickH87
11-03-2009, 01:24 PM
You are a noob...end of story.

LeeD
11-03-2009, 02:15 PM
As usual, I'm counter to most of you's....
I think we all should be able to hit heavy topspin moonballs, like topspin lobs, from the baseline so we CAN hit those shots against net players. Practice makes perfect, and variety IS the spice we need in our tennis games.
We also need to practice our drop shots CC and DTL, and both slice and topspin groundies.
Don't discount a seldom used shot. You never know WHO your next opponent is going to be.

gameboy
11-03-2009, 02:48 PM
Nobody is going to disagree with the statement that tall looping topspin lob is something that everyone should have in their arsenal.

What most people will not agree with is that you should use that shot 90% of the time.

Falloutjr
11-03-2009, 02:52 PM
Nobody is going to disagree with the statement that tall looping topspin lob is something that everyone should have in their arsenal.

What most people will not agree with is that you should use that shot 90% of the time.

Now that I look at that first post, I shouldve noted when I start moonballing, they're 80-90% of my shots. Over the course of an entire match its more around 10-20%

LeeD
11-03-2009, 02:53 PM
Effectiveness always determines the shot selection.
If it works, keep hitting it.
If they figure out how to dice you off the court, maybe don't.
So if it's WINNING tennis, keep it up. If you lose a buncha points, change it, like always.

doom
11-03-2009, 03:38 PM
One thing you will notice once you get to college or start playing very good players regularly, is that the last thing you want to give these players is time to take a full swing and time to put all of their body weight into a shot. Hitting moonballs is good for a change up but it gives your opponent too much time to work out what he's going to do with it. In the modern game the most valuable commodity on the court is time. You do not want to give your opponent too much of it.

apor
11-03-2009, 05:00 PM
back when i was a lowly 3.0-3.50 (no offense, i'm not that far up from it now) i used to play this guy that had a very effective moonball. lots of topspin, big bounce, etc- just what you'd expect the moonball to be. very annoying- that is till you learn to handle it. this guy used to beat me all the time, but me being me, i'll continue to play somebody till i get the best of them. so i learned to swing-volley his moonballs with angle, attack the inevitable shorter moonballs with a smash after the bounce or even out of the air. i got pretty good at hitting them on the rise as well, enough to turn it into offense.
well guess what, he quit hitting them to me because i started getting the points. and i started beating him. and sadly his game has never progressed from that point, and he's stuck back there with his moonballs.
now i'm a pretty strong 3.5 (i can usually get a couple of games off 4.0 players per set), with a pretty nasty overhead and at this level, there is not a moonballer to be found. why? because everybody i hit with will more often than not destroy a consistent moonballer.

doom
11-03-2009, 06:25 PM
So in conclusion: moonball=hate?

Judging by this thread it sure does.

5263
11-03-2009, 07:04 PM
Moonballing will only take you to a certain level..almost impossible to go up any higher from there..same thing as pushing although pushing will get you stuck at a lower level.

I watched a player take Agassi in his prime, to the limit with actual moon balls in the US open. It doesn't get any higher level than that.

NickH87
11-03-2009, 07:19 PM
I watched a player take Agassi in his prime, to the limit with actual moon balls in the US open. It doesn't get any higher level than that.

Prove it or it didnt happen.

GuyClinch
11-04-2009, 03:28 AM
Agassi actually is famous for hitting some moonballs in matches. Of course not everyone can hit a pro quality moonball. The 1998 match vs. Kucera

http://cornedbeefhash.wordpress.com/2007/08/24/crazy-us-open-memories/

SlapChop
11-04-2009, 06:01 AM
Funny story, after reading this thread yesterday I went to hit with a doubles group. During warmup the sun was still going down and the lights where coming on, this combination made it hard for me to see the ball and make good judgment on where the ball was going. I started hitting moonballs for the hell of it because it was easier than timing a strong regular stroke when I could see that well. I have to say that it took my warmup partner awhile to adjust to the moonballs. I had them landing pretty close to the base line. After they adjusted they could hit them back fine but that was the first time I ever really hit moonballs. During our match play I hit a few as well and found alot of them where returned into the net. It is something to keep in the arsenal in case you ever need it.

I am going to have to get used to playing in the lights. Since time change took away my sunshine.

mike53
11-04-2009, 07:27 AM
Can someone find me a video of a serious male player top spin lobbing everything as his main tactic of play??? Or is it only women???? :twisted:

Didn't some old guy back before the video age get a lot of mileage out of this kind of game? Can't for the life of me remember his name.

LeeD
11-04-2009, 07:30 AM
Harold Solomon both sides, EddyDibbs off the forehand mainly. Both top 30 players in the world in the '70's.

Mick
11-04-2009, 07:35 AM
Harold Solomon both sides, EddyDibbs off the forehand mainly. Both top 30 players in the world in the '70's.

i would think they would have been at a disadvantage playing this sort of game because they were quite short for a tennis player (both were shorter than 5 feet 7, i believe). and the shorter you are, the more difficult it is to return moonball.

LeeD
11-04-2009, 07:44 AM
Watched Harold MOONBALL Tanner, Kriek, and StanSmith into oblivion...:):)
Those western grip moons just take the sail out of the tall, unbending stiffs, or one track minded opponents.
Of course, on certain days, the T's, K's, and SS could easily WIN too....
But guys who always hit with Western grips, practice the art of moonballing, can trump tall guys who hit conti-forehand grips who would rather NOT hit 5 balls to end a point.
Patience, my young student.
And watching Harold PLAY against Eddy was a trying experience. Usually a lopsided score, after 8 games played in 1.5 hours, the rest goes quickly to the player with the patient mind.

mike53
11-04-2009, 07:50 AM
i would think they would have been at a disadvantage playing this sort of game because they were quite short for a tennis player (both were shorter than 5 feet 7, i believe). and the shorter you are, the more difficult it is to return moonball.

On the contrary, I think this type of game is an equalizer for shorter players.

LeeD
11-04-2009, 07:54 AM
I agree...
Short players have the disadvantage of power and ball speed in their games, so need to find an advantage. That advantage seems to be superior fitness, willingness to hit more balls for each point, quickness and change of direction skills, and a tougher mental mindset. All needed for a successful short guy career.
Big tall guys can just pound winners and angles and focus on themselves.

doom
11-05-2009, 12:33 AM
Watched Harold MOONBALL Tanner, Kriek, and StanSmith into oblivion...:):)
Those western grip moons just take the sail out of the tall, unbending stiffs, or one track minded opponents.
Of course, on certain days, the T's, K's, and SS could easily WIN too....
But guys who always hit with Western grips, practice the art of moonballing, can trump tall guys who hit conti-forehand grips who would rather NOT hit 5 balls to end a point.
Patience, my young student.
And watching Harold PLAY against Eddy was a trying experience. Usually a lopsided score, after 8 games played in 1.5 hours, the rest goes quickly to the player with the patient mind.

Too bad Semi Western is just about he most common forehand grip now. Makes taking those high balls much easier.

Bud
11-05-2009, 01:06 AM
I've been watching some videos on Youtube of players on the ATP and WTA moonballing because I love to watch the lob game, and I noticed most commenters had a strong disdain to say the least for the tactic. I find it very effective and I use moonballs on a regular basis and I don't think it's cheap or unskilled or anything. It's simply a style of tennis like SnV. Big serve, very safe 2nd serve, and lots of moonballs and smashes and lots of retrieving. It's not terribly complex or imaginative, but if you master it, I think could be a huge advantage. So why is it that it has such a negative connotation?

You're confusing 'moonballing' with hitting deeply into the court with lots of topspin (heavy ball). On TV, it appears to you that the pros are moonballing. However, go check out an ATP/WTA match in person and you'll see the incredible amount of action the players impart to the ball.

Moonballing is basically lobbing the ball... with little to no spin, deeply into the court. At levels of 4.0 or higher, many players return those balls by hitting them back deeply with lots of spin... pushing the moonballer further and further behind the baseline... until they cough up a short ball.

Don't confuse a moonball with a heavy ball.

GuyClinch
11-05-2009, 03:00 AM
Moonballs SHOULD be heavy balls IMHO. I don't think there is any confusion. I suppose people might count defensive lobs as moonballs but that's like calling Hewitt a pusher. :P

An effective moonball has a ton of spin as the spin will push people back sometimes making them hit the back wall (especially indoors) as they don't want to take a ball on the rise.

jazzyfunkybluesy
11-05-2009, 07:30 AM
I agree with Bud moonball is a lob and Nadals heavy spinning forehand is a topspin forehand.

LeeD
11-05-2009, 07:36 AM
Moonballs at lower levels can be flat or even sliced.
Moonballs at the ATP level are always hit with extreme topspin, landing deep and clearing the net by about 12'. Any higher, the opponent WILL move forwards to volley/swing the ball out of the air.

Daveyo
11-05-2009, 04:33 PM
I play a moonballer (pusher) often, last year he constantly beat me and another guy we play with. So we decided to come up with a strategy that would handle his game. Let me also say he is a great vollyer which makes things even worse.

First we decided to play his game, well that didn't work at all. Then we decided to play more up, hit with slower pace and volley more even though that wasn't our game , that did work. I found myself able to smash more overheads although we would get lobbed sometimes, we NEVER were passed and we started beating him.

I played him a set yesterday and I was up 4-1 when I started playing my normal baseline game. I then found myself in a grueling match where I was getting tired from chasing moonballs all over the place. We ended up him serving at 4-5 and I broke him for the win at 6-4. Stick to playing a little more up since they don't hit with any pace, if you can use the overhead with angle and learn hoe to volly, don't get into hitting corner to corner or you'll go down. I also started reading his shots and would anticipate for the winner, good luck everyone.

Ripper014
11-05-2009, 05:17 PM
My moonballs clear the net by 20 feet and land a foot from the baseline. Good luck with that :)

Then I would say your opponent is giving you to easy an approach shot to deal with. And as for drawing your opponent into the net with a dropshot... it had better be pretty good... I have been known to hit angled dropshots off of a dropshot.

You must be really good... because most people that go to the net will only do so when their approach shot or serve will illicit a weak return... and if you are going to provide them something high over the net... I usually consider that an easy put away.

But I concur with the statement above... you would be what I would call a pusher... nothing wrong with that, you are going to have a houseful of trophies one day. There have been many pro's that have been world class pushers... the memory of the first that I can remember were the Bagel Twins Harold Solomon and Eddie Dibbs. If you were to watch a match between the two of them you had better pack a lunch... dinner... and maybe even breakfast.

The best strategy for a new player is to keep the ball deep and play high percentage tennis... what better way is there to do this than to play a ball 20 feet over the net and deep in the court. It also takes a special player to play this way... it is not every player that has the patience and be strong of mind to carry out this game plan. Kudo's to you... I know I could not do it, it would be like chinese water torture for me.

GuyClinch
11-05-2009, 06:51 PM
I'd like to play a moonballer - it's good overhead practice.

xFullCourtTenniSx
11-05-2009, 09:42 PM
Moonballs SHOULD be heavy balls IMHO. I don't think there is any confusion. I suppose people might count defensive lobs as moonballs but that's like calling Hewitt a pusher. :P

An effective moonball has a ton of spin as the spin will push people back sometimes making them hit the back wall (especially indoors) as they don't want to take a ball on the rise.

Depends on the defensive lob. 90% of my defensive lobs are hit high with heavy topspin. The last 10% are when I can't really do much else other than flick one up into the air.

KenC
11-06-2009, 03:45 AM
Many years ago the women used to do this against Navratilova to keep her from punishing them with her forehand and backhand. I don't think it is as crucial today as the game is played with more topspin and the ball can clear the net with more than 5 feet and still land in and then bounce high. So, instead of hitting weak moonballs, you could try to hit high heavy topspin shots to achieve the same effect, just as Nadal does against Federer.

roddickslammer
11-06-2009, 09:10 AM
Most moonballers have terrible technique though...

jazzyfunkybluesy
11-06-2009, 09:18 AM
I'd like to play a moonballer - it's good overhead practice.

Yeah practice for slamming the ball in those panzies faces.:twisted:

LeeD
11-06-2009, 10:36 AM
A good moonballer doesn't hit it high enough for you to hit overheads. The keep it over your head, but not full reach over your head, and uses lots of topspin.
LeytonHewitt IS a pusher, when he's not in the state of mind to work you over the court. As is most of the top Men's players, when they're playing defensively. That is what defensive tennis is all about!
Nadal is one of the best pushers, who CAN move you around the court, and CAN hit some winners, but mostly chooses to punish his opponent's by making them huff and puff, retrieve and play shots from ridiculous angles.
Now we can't say Karlovic is a pusher ON HIS SERVES, but on his returns, he can get tentative and push the ball back hoping for a mistake from his opponent.

GuyClinch
11-06-2009, 01:29 PM
A good moonballer doesn't hit it high enough for you to hit overheads. The keep it over your head, but not full reach over your head, and uses lots of topspin.

The ball travels in an arc. So if its too low at the baseline you should be able to move up and still hit an overhead. They can't perform magic and make the ball stay exactly too low to overhead and then suddenly drop to your feet..

OTOH if its always too low for an overhead - you will be able to handle it with a regular forehand. It's impossible to make moonballs overhead proof.

Anyway I don't really think these overheads would be easy. I am just saying I would enjoy it because I like hitting overheads.

Ripper014
11-06-2009, 01:33 PM
I was just thinking... being a moonballer may be the epitomy of doing anything to win.

Cloud Atlas
11-06-2009, 02:49 PM
Falloutjnr, you certainly have tickets on yourself, I'll give you that!
I personally don't have a problem with the way you win. Having said that, I think you sound like the type of player that everyone loves to watch get their *** handed to them. Then tennis is the real winner.

Falloutjr
11-06-2009, 03:24 PM
Many years ago the women used to do this against Navratilova to keep her from punishing them with her forehand and backhand. I don't think it is as crucial today as the game is played with more topspin and the ball can clear the net with more than 5 feet and still land in and then bounce high. So, instead of hitting weak moonballs, you could try to hit high heavy topspin shots to achieve the same effect, just as Nadal does against Federer.

That's what my forehand AND backhand is like (i hit groundies better than the "3.5" player you all seem to think I am), but when my opponent starts constructing a point very well to the point that I'm about to lose, I moonball. If we get 6 or 7 shots in a rally and I think a change of pace is due, I moonball. If I see they can handle moonballs, I moonball even more. I don't mainstream moonballs, I just use them when the time calls for it. Moonballs, for me, are a reset button. You press it, and you go back to square one and start the game all over. I don't just do it to do it, there's a method to the madness. I was just curious as to why everyone thought moonballing is cheap. It's simply a weapon I employ. I made that post one day after I went to practice and I was like omg i wonder how well this would work. I use it about 5% of the time on the forehand side in matches (never on the backhand side actually)

And to all those who are opposed to the idea; why aren't you crying about serve and volley? Certainly the creators of tennis didn't intend for someone to stand 5 feet from the net smashing everything, but the purists don't seem to mind.

So yeah, I don't go for winners on a regular basis, I stand 5 feet behind the baseline and return everything with topspin, hit 20+ shot rallies, and I push from time to time, but I don't actually moonball as much as I claim to in the OP. I just wanted to see what reactions people had to the idea before I tried a couple matches with. I think I'd lose a lot of friends if I lobbed it up that much so I'll stick with d-line.

Edit: Plus, I was curious as to see why there were so many nasty comments about moonball videos on youtube. I can see why now o.o

Cloud Atlas
11-06-2009, 03:37 PM
I don't mainstream moonballs, I just use them when the time calls for it.

At the beginning of this post, you said that you moonball 80% of the time off your forehand and 40-50% of the time off your backhand. This is not just when you get into trouble or want to mix it up. So which is it?

AlpineCadet
11-06-2009, 03:38 PM
Try surprising them by randomly coming in and taking the easy kill out of the air. Moonballs aren't lobs, what's keeping you back?

Cloud Atlas
11-06-2009, 03:40 PM
I use it about 5% of the time on the forehand side in matches (never on the backhand side actually)





This 100% contradicts what you said earlier.

Falloutjr
11-06-2009, 03:43 PM
At the beginning of this post, you said that you moonball 80% of the time off your forehand and 40-50% of the time off your backhand. This is not just when you get into trouble or want to mix it up. So which is it?

It's the latter; I wanted to see how people would react to a pure moonballer to get a sense of why people disliked it. I was messing around on youtube and I saw the Seles/Chrissy footage of their moonballs and everyone left some nasty comments about moonballing and I thought it was unfair because it's just a shot. Just as a drop shot, or a volley is a shot, but people thought it was a very cheap thing to do. I guess I'm not the type that really gets upset over stuff like that, it's just another hurdle I have to overcome over the course of a match, so I didn't really get it at all, ya know?

Yeah, it does, but, like I said, I wouldn't have gotten as good a feel for you saying it's a cheap move because I've been moonballed and I don't think it's cheap at all, but the fact that you all referred to it as a pusher move and for lower level players, now I see why you feel like it's cheap and you shouldn't win like that, because you feel it's only a move for beginners and that you should forget it as you move along. Honestly, I don't think you should leave ANY shot behind, no matter how amateurish it is, because you never know when it'll come in handy.

NickH87
11-06-2009, 04:32 PM
At the 3.0-3.5 level you arent going to hit close to the baseline everytime so if you leave one short they can wait for it at the service line and hit it like a serve if they have any skill whatsoever.

nfor304
11-06-2009, 08:28 PM
At the beginning of this thread you were talking about how great you are at it and how you use it all the time and can beat these good players playing like and now your saying you use it as a change up, or your planning to use it?

aznstyle
11-06-2009, 11:47 PM
if it works, y should it be looked down on; keep with it

Falloutjr
11-07-2009, 05:03 AM
At the beginning of this thread you were talking about how great you are at it and how you use it all the time and can beat these good players playing like and now your saying you use it as a change up, or your planning to use it?

Nah I just wanted to play a few friendlies with it lol. But when I actually do use it, it's very effective.

Cody
11-07-2009, 10:24 AM
Nah I just wanted to play a few friendlies with it lol. But when I actually do use it, it's very effective.

Didn't you say that you use moonballs for 80-90 % of your forehands?.

Failed
11-07-2009, 10:30 AM
The OP is somewhat beginning to belive that he must not moonball in order to feel accepted on TT forums :< My guess

ubermeyer
11-07-2009, 12:08 PM
I was messing around on youtube and I saw the Seles/Chrissy footage of their moonballs and everyone left some nasty comments about moonballing and I thought it was unfair because it's just a shot.

I watched that video and I disliked it because if you can call yourself a pro, you should be able to deal with that kind of moonballing, but they couldn't.

topher.juan
11-07-2009, 10:17 PM
I love moonballing those who hate it. I don't enjoy performing or returning the shot myself; it's not the pace of tennis I like to play, but I far more enjoy shots that frustrate my opponents -- that's what I'm there to do. Frustration = Unforced Errors; frustrating an opponent is one of the fastest keys to winning. Don't ever put playing whatever your vision of "proper tennis" is above winning; I never lose at the expense of playing how I like to play.

luckyfool
11-08-2009, 05:29 AM
It's the latter; I wanted to see how people would react to a pure moonballer to get a sense of why people disliked it. I was messing around on youtube and I saw the Seles/Chrissy footage of their moonballs and everyone left some nasty comments about moonballing and I thought it was unfair because it's just a shot. Just as a drop shot, or a volley is a shot, but people thought it was a very cheap thing to do. I guess I'm not the type that really gets upset over stuff like that, it's just another hurdle I have to overcome over the course of a match, so I didn't really get it at all, ya know?

Yeah, it does, but, like I said, I wouldn't have gotten as good a feel for you saying it's a cheap move because I've been moonballed and I don't think it's cheap at all, but the fact that you all referred to it as a pusher move and for lower level players, now I see why you feel like it's cheap and you shouldn't win like that, because you feel it's only a move for beginners and that you should forget it as you move along. Honestly, I don't think you should leave ANY shot behind, no matter how amateurish it is, because you never know when it'll come in handy.

Don't leave moonballing behind? you use it more than 50% of the time when you are "4.5 rated" seems like you are still using it as your primary weapon now you've evolved...

haha i just want to echo what other posters have mentioned, you can't be 4.5 in just 1 yr of tennis. Maybe if you're coached by a pro and it's still by a long stretch.

Moonballs are actually easy to attack for 4.0+ players. From personal experience, either moonball it back on the rise (the moonballers get really fed up with that and eventually will hit a bad one so just easy overhead :-)) or just not give them a chance to hit one at all, or at least to force to hit a sloppy one. I've played and seen enough 4.0+ players to know that no true 4.0+ players hit moonballs in a regular basis.

You should post a video of your game when you get a chance and prove us all wrong. 8-)

Falloutjr
11-08-2009, 07:05 AM
Don't leave moonballing behind? you use it more than 50% of the time when you are "4.5 rated" seems like you are still using it as your primary weapon now you've evolved...

haha i just want to echo what other posters have mentioned, you can't be 4.5 in just 1 yr of tennis. Maybe if you're coached by a pro and it's still by a long stretch.

Moonballs are actually easy to attack for 4.0+ players. From personal experience, either moonball it back on the rise (the moonballers get really fed up with that and eventually will hit a bad one so just easy overhead :-)) or just not give them a chance to hit one at all, or at least to force to hit a sloppy one. I've played and seen enough 4.0+ players to know that no true 4.0+ players hit moonballs in a regular basis.

You should post a video of your game when you get a chance and prove us all wrong. 8-)

i exaggerated the numbers lol as previously stated. and even when i do moonball if they hit it on the rise WELL ill stop i mean c'mon o.o granted there are players who try to hit it on the rise and really don't change the trajectory of the ball so they hit it 5 feet long but other than that ill go back to my groundies.

teppeiahn1
11-08-2009, 06:02 PM
Its effective to a point. and idk where to make the separations between moon balling and heavy top but now these days, if you want to play competetively, you have to hit it out of the opponents strike zone.

nadal is a good example.

nothing wrong with moonballing but dont expect to get far with that since fluffy balls can be crushed from baseline.

fruitytennis1
11-08-2009, 06:06 PM
Beating the moonball is easy. Smashing the ball on their backhand side...Via hitting on the rise which most 4.0+ people can do. Or doing the slice-smash at the baseline which is soooo fun and every one knows it!

LeeD
11-09-2009, 07:57 AM
Yeah, easy.
And you could beat EddyDibbs, HaroldSolomon, and every little guy who's a 6.0 and better, right?

GuyClinch
11-09-2009, 08:45 AM
^^^ Probably not.

However it does play into the hands of some players. For example I am very tall and pretty strong (compared to other tennis players). But my footwork and mobility are not top notch.

So the slower moonballs play to my strengths. Its easier to get into position to hit moonballs. I can handle more of them with my height and I like hitting overheads.

So against me your better off hitting regular shots, IMHO. Basically when you hit moonballs your saying - "I don't think your offense is so good."

That's not smart if your opponent has a good offensive game and mediocre defensive one.

Yes Solomon would cream people who are lower levels - but he doesn't need to resort to his moonball hitting game to do that. It would just slow things down.

Pete

LeeD
11-09-2009, 08:53 AM
If HaroldSalomon in his prime played YOU, he'd win 0-0-0-0-0- or maybe you'd get one game a set. He was world #30 and better consistently.
He could run you alley to alley until your tongue hung out. You have bad footwork, you said. He'd hit behind you, hit into either of your alleys, and not break a sweat. AND, he sliced with his two hander just like JimmyConnors, with some sidespin, so the ball skidded ankle high to you on that side.
And on his forehands, he's hit harder than you could possibly repeatedly handle.
His serves at the TransAmerical speed serve contest averaged right around the low 120's, enough to beat you easily unless you were used to 6.0 level serves.
Remember, he beat the likes of RaulRameriz, DickStockton, KenRosewall, TonyRoche, StanSmith, IliaNastase, and many other top 20's during the mid thru late '70's. I don't think you'd take sets off any of those guys.

GuyClinch
11-09-2009, 09:02 AM
I never said he wouldn't. Your missing the point..

Amateurs don't hit moonballs like a pro moonballer. So the less effective moonballs aren't the perfect tatic for SOME players when hit by amatuers.

Those amatuer moonballs land short more often - and don't have enough spin on them and play into the hands of someone with a good offensive game and not so good defensive game.

As for the "bad footwork" bit. It comes into play during the "recovery" stage as well as getting to the ball. Both of these issues are minimized by the slower moonball. So again be aware that moonballs aren't the right tatic for every player.

LeeD
11-09-2009, 09:15 AM
Sorry, I did'nt know anyone was advocating moonballs for every player all of the time. I thought it was used by few players some of the time to take the opponent out of their rythums and to solicit weak returns or misses.
I think every tennis player has to learn how to use all the strokes, so they could choose the one they need when they need it. Moonballs are a science onto itself, and need to be practiced and used a few times to get the whole notion and timing down.
And what's a whole lot better than bouncing a topspin 1' over your opponent's head on his backhand side?

Falloutjr
11-10-2009, 04:06 PM
Beating the moonball is easy. Smashing the ball on their backhand side...Via hitting on the rise which most 4.0+ people can do. Or doing the slice-smash at the baseline which is soooo fun and every one knows it!

I don't like smashing :o I like sitting at the baseline and watching my opponents implode :)

And yeah, I'm a fluffy player. Loopy, topspin forehands and slice backhands on pretty much every shot, but I find it quite effective, especially against people who can hit the ball harder than I can. Even when I played football, I was never the tough guy who could bench 300 pounds. I was a quarterback; I threw the ball away and I slid when I ran When I play basketball, I stand on the perimeter and shoot 3's, but it's just who I am, and I'm okay with it :)

And Failed: I wear makeup on a daily basis; other people's opinions are rarely ever a concern of mine :D haha

Ripper014
11-10-2009, 04:13 PM
Harold Solomon would not just beat you.. he would beat you physically and mentally, when done you would want to put your racket in the closet and take up golf. I am sure pros many did...