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View Full Version : Reading Shot Type: Clues?


TimothyO
10-10-2011, 06:25 PM
Yes, a simple low to high forehand topspin shot is easy to see coming. And a samauri like back hand slice is predictable.

But some players are better at disguising their shots. One fellow I played had a forehand slice that looked broadly like a topspin shot but flick of the wrist changed it to a slice. The result was an attempt to prepare deeper in the court than the shot actually reached.

In your experience what are the best clues for shot type beyond the obvious, gross swing path? Are they limited to wrist action? Do shoulders and feet provide clues?

What are your best tricks for disguising shot spin, pace, and/or direction?

Fuji
10-10-2011, 07:23 PM
To OP:

To get a read on the ball, I look for the logo on the ball when my opponent hits it. It gives me at least a bit of reading off the spin, AKA whether it's under or top spin and it gives a bit of a read. Then look for the path while it's in the air. By the time it it's the ground, you should already be at the ball! :D

-Fuji

Xizel
10-10-2011, 07:25 PM
Some guys close their bodies more for DTL and inside out shots. There's also this wait for a volley or groundstroke (they still have time to smack it wide) that signals a drop coming.

Caesar
10-10-2011, 07:34 PM
Stance, swing path, swing timing. Put them together and you can usually get a rough read on what kind of ball it will be, and which side of the court it's going to.

But really, you shouldn't be worrying about this too much. Most players don't hit the ball anywhere near hard or accurate enough to make this is necessity. If you're hitting good shots you're limiting his options enough that most of the time you have enough time to see where the ball is going, then move, and still get there.

By the time you get to a level when you need to consistently read play in advance, it'll come naturally. For most rec players, getting a read on the serve is far more important.

Xizel
10-10-2011, 08:09 PM
By the time you get to a level when you need to consistently read play in advance, it'll come naturally. For most rec players, getting a read on the serve is far more important.

The spin type is obvious as daylight, but what are the cues for a T/wide serve?

Fuji
10-10-2011, 08:22 PM
The spin type is obvious as daylight, but what are the cues for a T/wide serve?

I look for racket pronation and contact point!

-Fuji

OTMPut
10-11-2011, 01:02 AM
The spin type is obvious as daylight, but what are the cues for a T/wide serve?

i look for which way his tongue is sticking out

Off The Wall
10-11-2011, 05:56 PM
Yes, a simple low to high forehand topspin shot is easy to see coming. And a samauri like back hand slice is predictable.

But some players are better at disguising their shots. One fellow I played had a forehand slice that looked broadly like a topspin shot but flick of the wrist changed it to a slice. The result was an attempt to prepare deeper in the court than the shot actually reached.

In your experience what are the best clues for shot type beyond the obvious, gross swing path? Are they limited to wrist action? Do shoulders and feet provide clues?

What are your best tricks for disguising shot spin, pace, and/or direction?

First off, ignore trying to figure out direction by watching footwork and racket prep. The bad players can't reliably hit where they're aiming and the good players can hit any angle from the same stance.

You can see pace coming by how they prep for the shot. (That's what makes a good drop shot, BTW.)

So, concentrate on spin. You probably know low-to-high = TS and high-to-low = slice.

Your "tricky" spinner opponent had a looping forehand take back (TS), but at the last second opened up his racquet head and slid under the ball (slice). These are easily dealt with if you have the right mindset. Namely, you stand five feet behind the baseline to rally. You are now ready to hit back anything deep or midcourt without much problem.

All you really have to be aware of is the short ball. Expect every one of your opponent's shots to be short. Watch for them. If they don't come, your in good position. Otherwise, the sooner you detect them, the more you can attack them.

Tennis_Monk
10-11-2011, 06:30 PM
I usually look for opponents tendencies. On this particular day/night what shots are working for him, etc. Also worth noticing is how they react to certain types of shots (ie deep high top spinner into their backhand. what to do they do?).
All these would be useful in predicting the most likely response for your shot. In addition to this, as other posters indicated, there are tell tale signs if it is a TOpspin or Slice.

Reading the serve isnt vastly different in recreational leagues. Force the server to hit wide or T or into body by adjusting your recieving position.observe how he hits them and that should usually give some clues.