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View Full Version : What's Your Problem with Hitting a Hard FH/BH?


user92626
11-06-2009, 11:16 AM
I think many of us like to hit groudstrokes like or remotely close to Fed's or Nadal's at some point. A shot like that would look beautiful when it goes over with topspin and speed. I dont' mean one can easily achieve Fed or Nadal's level, but any healthy adult can crank a pretty hard shot, but most people's problem is the shot will likely be out!

I see this problem as some sort of NOT having a definitive knowledge of the mechanic of performing such a shot. I think I had it but I really don't because I just don't know where to emphasize and train on. Most of my "hard" shots are just result of random luck. That's my problem. It's frustrating. What's yours?

user92626
11-06-2009, 02:06 PM
Nothing to discuss? Everyone either already hits like Gonzo or simply satisfied with a granny FH? LOL ..heheh j/k

Blake0
11-06-2009, 08:08 PM
It's a combination of good timing, footwork, balance, form, and hand eye coordination? :) Oh i also forgot good..practice and aiming?

xFullCourtTenniSx
11-06-2009, 09:02 PM
Anytime I miss it's cause my positioning was poor (meaning lazy footwork and lack of focus) as well as not controlling the racket head (opened it up a bit too much). Once I get into a groove though, it comes naturally once the opportunity presents itself.

But if we're talking about during a rally and you just want to randomly crank up the pace, hit through the ball more, increase your swing speed, and step in if you can. If you're hitting long doing that, close the racket face more on the take back. Sometimes I'll hit with a friend who hits very hard, flat groundstrokes, and I'd try to bomb them back. First 5-10 minutes I got the pace I wanted and was spraying them long. Everything looked right, but it became difficult occasionally to control my racket face, so I closed it more on the takeback like Federer used to, and ripped on it with enough lift to get it over the net. The result was a deep flat shot with plenty of spin for control. And anytime he missed, it was because he was late because we were hitting balls pretty hard.

If you have a consistent stroke, all you do to hit harder is step in and hit through the ball more. If you don't have a solid stroke to begin with, don't bother trying.

Though if you're talking about blasting 80-90 mph forehands, don't bother trying unless you have the footwork.

GuyClinch
11-06-2009, 09:41 PM
The easiest balls to crank are ones that bounce high above the net - cause then you can swing hard with a fairly flat stroke and they will go in.

As for cranking lower bouncing balls I find it harder because when I try to add alot of topspin I sometimes just end up with a loopier shot.

xFullCourtTenniSx
11-06-2009, 09:42 PM
The easiest balls to crank are ones that bounce high above the net - cause then you can swing hard with a fairly flat stroke and they will go in.

As for cranking lower bouncing balls I find it harder because when I try to add alot of topspin I sometimes just end up with a loopier shot.

Hehe. That's why I love using an eastern grip on both sides, it's easier to take a whack on these shots. :)

Backhand I find difficult to hit a totally flat screamer though.

user92626
11-06-2009, 10:16 PM
Sounds like it's very physically and mentally strenuous to play a match remotely resembling atp level. Those guys in atp matches never seem to let up the pace and spin.

GuyClinch, I know those flat shots you're talking about. However, I can only comfortably hit them when they're near the service line or closer. For the shots from baseline it still takes me a lot of mental focus and judging...and praying that somehow the shot hit hard will go in. LOL. Think about it there must be enough shanks, long's and mistakes that alot of people develop a fear of hitting hard, a mental block if you will. It's rare to see people at recreational parks hitting freely according to their physical strength.

I play with this one guy who rallies fairly well. But when we start playing a set with points, he literally can't bring himself to hit any regular fh. He just punches or lobs the ball back. It's amazing!

Blake0
11-06-2009, 10:40 PM
Sounds like it's very physically and mentally strenuous to play a match remotely resembling atp level. Those guys in atp matches never seem to let up the pace and spin.

GuyClinch, I know those flat shots you're talking about. However, I can only comfortably hit them when they're near the service line or closer. For the shots from baseline it still takes me a lot of mental focus and judging...and praying that somehow the shot hit hard will go in. LOL. Think about it there must be enough shanks, long's and mistakes that alot of people develop a fear of hitting hard, a mental block if you will. It's rare to see people at recreational parks hitting freely according to their physical strength.

I play with this one guy who rallies fairly well. But when we start playing a set with points, he literally can't bring himself to hit any regular fh. He just punches or lobs the ball back. It's amazing!

True, but the 10+ years of tennis experience in the top academies should give them some confidence. It's all about concentration, if you begin to doubt yourself you'll dig yourself up in a hole, but they've learned how to come back from that hole quickly.

The one guy you were talking about is really common due to lack of match experience, which is why it takes a while to go past 4.5..

xFullCourtTenniSx
11-06-2009, 10:58 PM
Sounds like it's very physically and mentally strenuous to play a match remotely resembling atp level. Those guys in atp matches never seem to let up the pace and spin.

GuyClinch, I know those flat shots you're talking about. However, I can only comfortably hit them when they're near the service line or closer. For the shots from baseline it still takes me a lot of mental focus and judging...and praying that somehow the shot hit hard will go in. LOL. Think about it there must be enough shanks, long's and mistakes that alot of people develop a fear of hitting hard, a mental block if you will. It's rare to see people at recreational parks hitting freely according to their physical strength.

I play with this one guy who rallies fairly well. But when we start playing a set with points, he literally can't bring himself to hit any regular fh. He just punches or lobs the ball back. It's amazing!

I always use match shots in practice. There's no point in hitting those shots in practice if you aren't going to use them in a match.

And I see plenty of people at the parks who hit freely according to their physical strength. Okay... They might actually only account for maybe... 10% of the people I regularly see at parks, but still a good percentage.

And it's not mentally strenuous at all to keep hitting these shots all day long. They hit harder when they want a big one. They aren't going 100% from behind the baseline. They play with plenty of safety and margin during a rally. It's physically strenuous to keep chasing those balls down and hitting your own shot as well as you can. Maybe slightly mentally strenuous when you get into a 20 ball rally running around the place because you don't want to be the first one to throw up the short ball, but otherwise it's just running down the ball and hitting your shot. It's physically exhausting to do it though, which is why fitness has become a huge part of the game. The speed of the rallies have went up and players have to cover a greater distance and run more during points, so they must be very fit to keep going in a match, let alone one point.

True, but the 10+ years of tennis experience in the top academies should give them some confidence. It's all about concentration, if you begin to doubt yourself you'll dig yourself up in a hole, but they've learned how to come back from that hole quickly.

The one guy you were talking about is really common due to lack of match experience, which is why it takes a while to go past 4.5..

The more match experience you have, the less likely you are to choke up and the more confident you will be in your shots, meaning you'll play much better because you're used to the pressure and you know what to do in certain situations. (Like get the first serve in, play consistently using heavy spin and height, play big on this point or play conservative on that point, place the serve here this time and attack his shaky side, change up the shots this point, etc.)

ubermeyer
11-07-2009, 12:01 PM
but any healthy adult can crank a pretty hard shot, but most people's problem is the shot will likely be out!

I don't think they would be able to if they are a complete beginner

user92626
11-07-2009, 12:33 PM
ube,
Yes, they can. Tell them to ignore tennis and hit the ball like baseball, they'll send the ball out of the park. :)

I just watched some Basel matches. I think one of the "tricks" is that pro's do not complicate their strokes with all the thinking about pace, topspin, net clearance, etc. which i think most amateur players like me do. They simply hit in the zone/range that they have had good experience with. The better guy is the guy that succeeds playing at the extreme edge of that zone. That is it. Other than that I can't explain how Fed was able to hit consistently winner-type shots, or how his loser opponents have more shots into the net or long. They obviously do not aim or consciously manually manufacturing those types of shots.

Slazenger07
11-07-2009, 01:28 PM
Hehe. That's why I love using an eastern grip on both sides, it's easier to take a whack on these shots. :)

Backhand I find difficult to hit a totally flat screamer though.

hmmm not me, I feel like the key is getting a good shoulder turn, getting low, staying loose, and really stepping into your shot. Give me a shot to hit and I can absolutely crush my 1hbh. :)

moroni
11-07-2009, 01:32 PM
well i hit medium-powered rally shots most of the time but when the tim comes and i hav eenough time to set up I hit pretty hard .... its just a matter of timing , footwork and hand-eye coordenation

jms007
11-07-2009, 01:41 PM
Footwork and timing is usually the problem. Also choosing your moments when to hit a hard shot!

You see plenty of people who can rip shots in practice but come match time resort to pushing the ball around. That's because they're more concerned about not losing than playing well of course. I think if you're even gonna be mentally comfortable with ripping shots in a match, you should accept that you're probably going to lose a bunch of matches before you can do it successfully. No way around it.