PDA

View Full Version : Introducing myself and asking a question about double bend forehand


Freestyle
11-25-2009, 05:48 PM
Hi all,

As you might notice, I'm new to Talk Tennis forums, so I'll take this opportunity to introduce myself. I am a relative newcomer to the sport of tennis itself. I have only been playing for about ten months now. My goals in tennis are not absurd- I merely want to play the sport for recreation lifelong, along with maybe some high school tennis and/or some low level college tennis as well. Some of my strengths coming in to tennis, which have helped me improve at a decent clip, are mentally my fierce sense of competition and determination, along with the fact that I am on varsity on the basketball and track/cross-country teams; I'm physically very fit, 150 lbs, 5'10" and about to hit my growth spurt. The main thing holding me back is a mental tendency to get emotionally involved in the match; I do have a quick temper.

In any case, on to my question. I have achieved a relatively sound basic forehand incorporating all the fundamentals, as noted on sites like FYB. I hit this forehand with a straight arm and eastern grip. Now, I'm attempting to take my forehand to the next level by switching to a more modern, double bend, semi-western windshield wiper stroke (what a mouthful of words). I am having difficulty with the double bend, however. I know that one is supposed to maintain the bend's integrity throughout most of the shot. However, I am having trouble generating velocity with this. My question is, how do I generate racquet head speed while still maintaining the bend? Also, is it possible for someone to break down the shot for me?

Many thanks in advance.

Geezer Guy
11-25-2009, 07:27 PM
You don't want to turn pro in a couple years? It's nice to have someone with reasonable goals - and I do think yours are reasonable.

I cannot help you a bit with your double-bend windshield-wiper thing-a-ma-jiggy. That shot isn't in my bag.

I'm sure someone will be along shortly that can help you.


"The main thing holding me back is a mental tendency to get emotionally involved in the match; I do have a quick temper."

I can comment on this. It will be helpfull to you, I think, to be able to control your emotions on the court. It's OK to get fired up and motivated, but if it goes too far it can really mess up your game and your head. IF YOU CAN, and it's not easy, just take a step back mentally, and realize it's just a game. If you can, have a little chuckle to yourself about whatever just transpired that got you so worked up.

Good luck with your game. Sounds like you're off to a good start.

drakulie
11-25-2009, 08:07 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SiHIklJiM7U

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lXWks8yvRJQ

user92626
11-25-2009, 08:50 PM
OP,

You know I also watched and tried to follow FYB's instruction on the hitting arm position. It makes sense but I found it difficult to apply and losing power was exactly the problem I saw. Will, who's in the FYB clips, said that their videos needed to be updated.

Now I wouldn't worry about double-bend and what not. I just focus on comfort in producing the fastest racket speed/swing possible and clean contact. Your body's tendency will take care of "double-bend", straight, etc. Is Fed's FH straight or what? I just know that I swing with that kind of extent. Again, only swing path and comfort at highest speed is important to me.

Blake0
11-25-2009, 09:26 PM
Welcome to TW!

hitting double bend forehands should be easier then straight arm forehands. I'm assuming you were hitting with the over the shoulder finish and now want to learn a WW, with a double bend? First off, it's a great thing you started tennis with an over the shoulder finish in my oppinion, it gets you hitting through the ball and using your body to hit hard (really hard to whip your arm with over the shoulder followthrough and get good results). Those are some important fundamentals some players miss, along with others, if they start off right away with the WW.

The main difference between over the shoulder and WW is the followthrough ofcourse, and you gain power in WW by angular momentum instead of linear like you would with the over the shoulder finish.

The main difference between a straight arm and double bend, is the hitting arm structure. Instead of keeping the arm straight like you would with straight arm forehands, you also bend in the elbow (you can vary the bend). The fyb video user mentioned, is a great video showing the difference between straight and double bend.

I won't really get into WW right now, i'll save it for the real experts..but, you say you're not getting power in your forehand? Do you get a really spinny ball with no power or does it lack both?

You won't get as much power as you could with a straight arm, because of the smaller swing path, but you increase your margin for timing errors.

Blake0
11-25-2009, 09:55 PM
Here's a breakdown of a double bend forehand . Using the kinetic chain, you load up on your outside (right foot for righties) foot and turn your hips and shoulders and feel like you're sort of coiling up your energy. Then you uncoil by transfering your loaded energy from bottom up. Your legs drive up and forward, causing your hips to rotate, which causes your shoulders to rotate, which helps rotate your arm and the racket fast.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lFibX-inICg

Heres gonzalez using a double bend forehand.
I won't go through the whole thing..but i'll try to mention all the main points.
1.) His left hand is still holding the racket throughout his unit turn. He releases when he begins his loop.
2.)He's loading his weight on his outside (right) foot.
3.) He loops his backswing. This one is a really big backswing, because he's known for big backswings, and plus he's about to rip a 180km forehand. Another thing to note, is that he's leading with his elbow. I don't really recommend this because it's been proven to cause timing issues..or so i've heard.
4.)0:13 - Notice how his left hand is out pointing to the side, and how all pros do this. It is important to keeping a good shoulder turn, provide balance, and some other things i can't seem to remember right now...but it's important to have for anyone who wants to have good racket head speed.
5.) At around the same time as above, he has finished his backswing, and notice how he has attained his hitting structure he will maintain throughout most of the stroke.
6.) Notice how his body is starting to uncoil, they don't happen at the same time together, nor do they happen after each one completes, they sort of act like a dominoe affect..each dominoe doesnt fall after the 1 before it falls down completely, it happens as it falls on top of it. Think of this as the same concept, it's not something that can be done conciously, it is attained through practicing and your body finding the timing necessary to be efficient.
7.) As he starts swinging forward before contact, you see him leading the stroke with the buttcap,the wrist in laid back position. You come to this position as an effect of swinging the racket forward and keeping the wrist loose.
8.) He doesn't come under the ball as much because he's trying to hit the ball hard..er then normal, but hits through the ball a lot.
9.) His wrist is basically almost locked in the laid back position until quite a bit after he hits the ball, then you can see his wrist "release". Make sure you don't try to brush up the ball with the wrist, it'll cause a lot of shank/inconsistency in your stroke.
10.) He follows through around his body.

papa
11-26-2009, 05:41 AM
Good job BlakeO, not easy trying to describe some of this stuff.

Double bend forehand, keeping the elbow in/not necessarily tight, gives up the leverage to apply the two important elements of the stroke - lift and push, we need both on most shots. When the wrist is laid back, its in its strongest position - later on he'll learn that the wrist can/should play a more active role but it would be a mistake to use it now. Get in the habit of hitting with the hips and legs, not the arm and wrist. The arm and wrist cannot take the abuse the hips and legs can and too many injuries occur because people want to play this game with the arm - stupid because your going to get hurt, just a matter of time.

LeeD
11-26-2009, 07:34 AM
Personally, rather than breaking it down mentally, I'd watch vids of the modern forehands of Gonzo, DJ, and Ferrer. Incorporate what you can do and what works for you. Don't "copy" per se, instead use the parts that your body can incorporate.
The reason you watch more than ONE example is that you are NOT that one example, but a mesh of different styles waiting to be developed.
That Agassi forehand looks old fashioned. YES, it would beat me zip zip.

Freestyle
11-26-2009, 10:25 AM
Thank you everyone for the responses!

You don't want to turn pro in a couple years? It's nice to have someone with reasonable goals - and I do think yours are reasonable.

I cannot help you a bit with your double-bend windshield-wiper thing-a-ma-jiggy. That shot isn't in my bag.

I'm sure someone will be along shortly that can help you.


"The main thing holding me back is a mental tendency to get emotionally involved in the match; I do have a quick temper."

I can comment on this. It will be helpfull to you, I think, to be able to control your emotions on the court. It's OK to get fired up and motivated, but if it goes too far it can really mess up your game and your head. IF YOU CAN, and it's not easy, just take a step back mentally, and realize it's just a game. If you can, have a little chuckle to yourself about whatever just transpired that got you so worked up.

Good luck with your game. Sounds like you're off to a good start.

That's exactly what I'm trying to do. My asset mentally, which is an intense drive to be competitive, also holds me back on off days because I begin to mentally berate myself for my mistakes. Thanks for the advice; I'll try it next time I step onto the court.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SiHIklJiM7U

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lXWks8yvRJQ

The videos of Agassi are pretty useful. The main difference I see between his forehand and what I'm trying to do is spacing. It feels like my forehand is more cramped than his.

OP,

You know I also watched and tried to follow FYB's instruction on the hitting arm position. It makes sense but I found it difficult to apply and losing power was exactly the problem I saw. Will, who's in the FYB clips, said that their videos needed to be updated.

Now I wouldn't worry about double-bend and what not. I just focus on comfort in producing the fastest racket speed/swing possible and clean contact. Your body's tendency will take care of "double-bend", straight, etc. Is Fed's FH straight or what? I just know that I swing with that kind of extent. Again, only swing path and comfort at highest speed is important to me.

I see what you're saying here. Worrying about the double bend won't help me as much as relaxing and just attempting the shot, letting my body take care of itself. Good points.

Welcome to TW!

hitting double bend forehands should be easier then straight arm forehands. I'm assuming you were hitting with the over the shoulder finish and now want to learn a WW, with a double bend? First off, it's a great thing you started tennis with an over the shoulder finish in my oppinion, it gets you hitting through the ball and using your body to hit hard (really hard to whip your arm with over the shoulder followthrough and get good results). Those are some important fundamentals some players miss, along with others, if they start off right away with the WW.

The main difference between over the shoulder and WW is the followthrough ofcourse, and you gain power in WW by angular momentum instead of linear like you would with the over the shoulder finish.

The main difference between a straight arm and double bend, is the hitting arm structure. Instead of keeping the arm straight like you would with straight arm forehands, you also bend in the elbow (you can vary the bend). The fyb video user mentioned, is a great video showing the difference between straight and double bend.

I won't really get into WW right now, i'll save it for the real experts..but, you say you're not getting power in your forehand? Do you get a really spinny ball with no power or does it lack both?

You won't get as much power as you could with a straight arm, because of the smaller swing path, but you increase your margin for timing errors.

What I meant is that my shots lack penetration and accuracy. I wouldn't really call them "spinny"; they're more like sitters, and I tend to spray them over the court.

Here's a breakdown of a double bend forehand . Using the kinetic chain, you load up on your outside (right foot for righties) foot and turn your hips and shoulders and feel like you're sort of coiling up your energy. Then you uncoil by transfering your loaded energy from bottom up. Your legs drive up and forward, causing your hips to rotate, which causes your shoulders to rotate, which helps rotate your arm and the racket fast.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lFibX-inICg

Heres gonzalez using a double bend forehand.
I won't go through the whole thing..but i'll try to mention all the main points.
1.) His left hand is still holding the racket throughout his unit turn. He releases when he begins his loop.
2.)He's loading his weight on his outside (right) foot.
3.) He loops his backswing. This one is a really big backswing, because he's known for big backswings, and plus he's about to rip a 180km forehand. Another thing to note, is that he's leading with his elbow. I don't really recommend this because it's been proven to cause timing issues..or so i've heard.
4.)0:13 - Notice how his left hand is out pointing to the side, and how all pros do this. It is important to keeping a good shoulder turn, provide balance, and some other things i can't seem to remember right now...but it's important to have for anyone who wants to have good racket head speed.
5.) At around the same time as above, he has finished his backswing, and notice how he has attained his hitting structure he will maintain throughout most of the stroke.
6.) Notice how his body is starting to uncoil, they don't happen at the same time together, nor do they happen after each one completes, they sort of act like a dominoe affect..each dominoe doesnt fall after the 1 before it falls down completely, it happens as it falls on top of it. Think of this as the same concept, it's not something that can be done conciously, it is attained through practicing and your body finding the timing necessary to be efficient.
7.) As he starts swinging forward before contact, you see him leading the stroke with the buttcap,the wrist in laid back position. You come to this position as an effect of swinging the racket forward and keeping the wrist loose.
8.) He doesn't come under the ball as much because he's trying to hit the ball hard..er then normal, but hits through the ball a lot.
9.) His wrist is basically almost locked in the laid back position until quite a bit after he hits the ball, then you can see his wrist "release". Make sure you don't try to brush up the ball with the wrist, it'll cause a lot of shank/inconsistency in your stroke.
10.) He follows through around his body.

This is a great description. It clears up a lot of the things I was doubtful about. Thanks for putting this up!

Good job BlakeO, not easy trying to describe some of this stuff.

Double bend forehand, keeping the elbow in/not necessarily tight, gives up the leverage to apply the two important elements of the stroke - lift and push, we need both on most shots. When the wrist is laid back, its in its strongest position - later on he'll learn that the wrist can/should play a more active role but it would be a mistake to use it now. Get in the habit of hitting with the hips and legs, not the arm and wrist. The arm and wrist cannot take the abuse the hips and legs can and too many injuries occur because people want to play this game with the arm - stupid because your going to get hurt, just a matter of time.

Totally agree with you about the hip and the arm. It really annoys me when I see some shooting a shot in basketball using their arm to power it. I guess a parallel between basketball and tennis is that you need to bend your legs to store up power, before transferring it through your body up to your wrist.

Just one question. When you refer to push, are you talking about forward momentum, or pushing the racquet? I thought laying the wrist back would pull the racquet along behind you. Sorry if it's a stupid question; I just like to make sure about this sort of thing :) .

Personally, rather than breaking it down mentally, I'd watch vids of the modern forehands of Gonzo, DJ, and Ferrer. Incorporate what you can do and what works for you. Don't "copy" per se, instead use the parts that your body can incorporate.
The reason you watch more than ONE example is that you are NOT that one example, but a mesh of different styles waiting to be developed.
That Agassi forehand looks old fashioned. YES, it would beat me zip zip.

I see what you're saying here. The thing is that although the pros can be a good example, watching them makes me want to do too much too soon. I have problems limiting myself, which is why I like to take care of technique issues (in any sport) with a more methodical, step by step approach.

drakulie
11-26-2009, 10:42 AM
freestyle, if you are more cramped than him, you are probably hitting late, and too close to the body, rather than out in front.

Good luck.

papa
11-26-2009, 11:56 AM
[QUOTE=Freestyle;4146910]Thank you everyone for the responses!


Totally agree with you about the hip and the arm. It really annoys me when I see some shooting a shot in basketball using their arm to power it. I guess a parallel between basketball and tennis is that you need to bend your legs to store up power, before transferring it through your body up to your wrist.

Just one question. When you refer to push, are you talking about forward momentum, or pushing the racquet? I thought laying the wrist back would pull the racquet along behind you. Sorry if it's a stupid question; I just like to make sure about this sort of thing :) .



Well, the push we're talking about is exactly what you mentioned - pushing the racquet into the ball as you lift the ball with the racquet. Laying the wrist back puts the wrist in the strongest position and establishes the hitting structure of the arm - the double bend position. The first part of the forward stroke is, as you mention, pulling the racquet forward. As you rotate into the ball the racquet will come around and that's what we're looking for - keeping the racquet hand out in front of the head. I think your on the right track and BTW your questions are certainly not stupid - some of this stuff doesn't seem to make sense at first.

Freestyle
11-26-2009, 03:42 PM
Thank you everyone for the responses!


Totally agree with you about the hip and the arm. It really annoys me when I see some shooting a shot in basketball using their arm to power it. I guess a parallel between basketball and tennis is that you need to bend your legs to store up power, before transferring it through your body up to your wrist.

Just one question. When you refer to push, are you talking about forward momentum, or pushing the racquet? I thought laying the wrist back would pull the racquet along behind you. Sorry if it's a stupid question; I just like to make sure about this sort of thing :) .



Well, the push we're talking about is exactly what you mentioned - pushing the racquet into the ball as you lift the ball with the racquet. Laying the wrist back puts the wrist in the strongest position and establishes the hitting structure of the arm - the double bend position. The first part of the forward stroke is, as you mention, pulling the racquet forward. As you rotate into the ball the racquet will come around and that's what we're looking for - keeping the racquet hand out in front of the head. I think your on the right track and BTW your questions are certainly not stupid - some of this stuff doesn't seem to make sense at first.

Thank you for the clarification. I just went out and hit today, keeping in mind everything that you guys have explained, and my forehand improved greatly. I wasn't hitting winners left and right, but I had control of where I placed the ball, and I could penetrate the court. It's still an ugly shot, but at least now it's workable, and I can practice to make it more efficient. I think I will post a video soon so people can diagnose actual mistakes I am making. Thanks again for the help, all.