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View Full Version : My unit turn is greater holding racket in left hand, but I've always been a righty?


DeShaun
01-20-2012, 11:49 PM
Played judo as a kid, ingrained certain twisting and footwork patterns that even to this day make my left foot feel ten times more in touch with the floor/ground than my right. Not only this but shadow swinging a racket with my left hand, I noticed only just last night, feels much better throughout my entire body except in my hand, as I've never performed any task with only the use of my left hand. It's strange and makes me want to see if I can learn to swing a tennis racket lefty. Nearly my entire body feels predisposed to doing that, even as the nerves in my left hand seem totally not prepared.

Has anyone out there experienced anything similar to this?

Ducker
01-21-2012, 12:07 AM
No I have not, but if i had what is the point of this thread?

You should be hitting the 2hnd backhand though.

Quikj
01-21-2012, 12:23 AM
I noticed the same phenomenon a while back. While shadow swinging forehands in front of a mirror, i noticed more control, spatial awareness and timing with my left hand.

For reference, I'm normally oriented to the right side of my body and I play right handed. The reason why I say 'normally' is because i was ambidextrous as a kid. I still prefer to kick with my left and I snowboard and skate goofy, for whatever that's worth.

I don't know about you, but my backhand has always been my better stroke, simply because I feel that i can see the ball more clearly, for longer through my strike zone on my left side.

To be honest though, I think that I just like hitting tennis balls when moving to my left, in general. Case in point, my favorite forehand is of the inside-out variety. In fact, it's the only one that comes naturally to me.

Sorry to get off track and grab a bit of your thread. I simply hope to divulge compiled information of or related to the topic.

When you mentioned how your left foot always feels as if it's in greater contact with the ground, you touched on the most striking difference between the coordination of either side of my body.

So, I guess my answer would be yes. I have experienced something similar to what you've experienced. Rather long road I took to get there...

ace_pace
01-21-2012, 02:40 AM
Well for me, I noticed that when I first started playing tennis. I tried both wings and found out I felt better playing left handed despite me being naturally right handed.

If you have a 2 handed backhand, then you should stay where you are. Note that trying a new arm means you have to sorta relearn your strokes.

rkelley
01-21-2012, 10:02 AM
One issue could be eye dominance. My wife shot .22 rifles competitively. She's right handed in everything she does, but she's left eyed. She shot left handed because for shooting the eye is the most important thing. When she was a kid learning to shoot, it just felt more comfortable to her to sight with her left eye.

Another issue is that some people just generally do different things better with different hands. I think the majority of folks are all one side or the other, but there's a significant minority that, for instance, bats left hand and writes right handed.

One thing to keep in mind is serving. I would think it would be the most difficult thing to learn to do with the side of your body that didn't feel comfortable throwing. I guess you could serve with one hand and play the rest of the game with the other hand. Overheads would be a little weird, but there's often time to switch hands on those, or even hit overheads with both hands (now that fixes a major weakness in most people's games).

DeShaun
01-21-2012, 10:24 AM
Well for me, I noticed that when I first started playing tennis. I tried both wings and found out I felt better playing left handed despite me being naturally right handed.

If you have a 2 handed backhand, then you should stay where you are. Note that trying a new arm means you have to sorta relearn your strokes.


Relearning may be a new phase of discovery.

DeShaun
01-21-2012, 10:33 AM
I noticed the same phenomenon a while back. While shadow swinging forehands in front of a mirror, i noticed more control, spatial awareness and timing with my left hand.

For reference, I'm normally oriented to the right side of my body and I play right handed. The reason why I say 'normally' is because i was ambidextrous as a kid. I still prefer to kick with my left and I snowboard and skate goofy, for whatever that's worth.

I don't know about you, but my backhand has always been my better stroke, simply because I feel that i can see the ball more clearly, for longer through my strike zone on my left side.

To be honest though, I think that I just like hitting tennis balls when moving to my left, in general. Case in point, my favorite forehand is of the inside-out variety. In fact, it's the only one that comes naturally to me.

Sorry to get off track and grab a bit of your thread. I simply hope to divulge compiled information of or related to the topic.

When you mentioned how your left foot always feels as if it's in greater contact with the ground, you touched on the most striking difference between the coordination of either side of my body.

So, I guess my answer would be yes. I have experienced something similar to what you've experienced. Rather long road I took to get there...

Your experiences much seem to mirror mine. The backhand is my stronger side and my best ever forehand was hit inside out. Thanks, for your enriching reply. Have you tried extensively your hand at swinging lefty with racquet and ball?

DeShaun
01-21-2012, 01:24 PM
One issue could be eye dominance. My wife shot .22 rifles competitively. She's right handed in everything she does, but she's left eyed. She shot left handed because for shooting the eye is the most important thing. When she was a kid learning to shoot, it just felt more comfortable to her to sight with her left eye.

Another issue is that some people just generally do different things better with different hands. I think the majority of folks are all one side or the other, but there's a significant minority that, for instance, bats left hand and writes right handed.

One thing to keep in mind is serving. I would think it would be the most difficult thing to learn to do with the side of your body that didn't feel comfortable throwing. I guess you could serve with one hand and play the rest of the game with the other hand. Overheads would be a little weird, but there's often time to switch hands on those, or even hit overheads with both hands (now that fixes a major weakness in most people's games).

Thanks rkelly, that's interesting about your wife/eye dominance. It confirms a hunch I had.
Just returned from the hitting wall where I swung lefty. Two-handed backhands were effortless mechanics-wise. I was stroking them with much greater control/spin (but far less power) than I normally stroke my right-handed forehand off that same wing. Eye-opening.
The lefty forehand was something else. I was able to manage torquing waist high balls ala McEnroe but those lefty forehands were hugely dependent on my unit turn, and I really had lock my arm and wrist or else lose all control over the stroke. Couldn't seem to lay the wrist back.

Quikj
01-22-2012, 12:02 AM
Your experiences much seem to mirror mine. The backhand is my stronger side and my best ever forehand was hit inside out. Thanks, for your enriching reply. Have you tried extensively your hand at swinging lefty with racquet and ball?

I don't want to say that it's too late for me to start regularly experimenting with my left hand, but that's close to how I feel. I think that I would have a pretty good left handed forehand, but I like my two-hander way too much to give it up!

Have you filmed your footwork and played it back in slow motion? How did you first notice that your unit turn is greater on your left side?

misterg
01-22-2012, 06:45 AM
I experienced that too. Becaus of wrist injury i'm forced to play lefty, and my strokes (expecially the forehand) ad technically musch betten. I'm using my whole body and not only the arm, also the preparation and also footwork is much better... well except for the serve. I have a theory about: my pro that learned me to play tennis about 20-years ago is a moron. When I was forced to play lefty I was exaclty knowing what to do and how to do correctly, so my strokes are looking better...

DeShaun
01-22-2012, 12:52 PM
I don't want to say that it's too late for me to start regularly experimenting with my left hand, but that's close to how I feel. I think that I would have a pretty good left handed forehand, but I like my two-hander way too much to give it up!

Have you filmed your footwork and played it back in slow motion? How did you first notice that your unit turn is greater on your left side?

I have not filmed myself. I injured my elbow recently. . .waited a couple of weeks for recovery, but the elbow never healed. So, I decided to think about playing as a lefty, did some shadow swings and that's when I realized my left-handed unit turn's range of motion was clearly greater, as was my left foot's feel for the ground; not to mention, it seemed as though my overall spatial awareness as a lefty was equal or better to that as a righty.

DeShaun
01-22-2012, 12:56 PM
I experienced that too. Becaus of wrist injury i'm forced to play lefty, and my strokes (expecially the forehand) ad technically musch betten. I'm using my whole body and not only the arm, also the preparation and also footwork is much better... well except for the serve. I have a theory about: my pro that learned me to play tennis about 20-years ago is a moron. When I was forced to play lefty I was exaclty knowing what to do and how to do correctly, so my strokes are looking better...
I actually feel better connected with my racket and the angle of its face when it taken back and out of view behind me when swinging lefty because, it seems, I can visibly see or visualize the racket in greater detail my mind when swinging lefty.

LeeD
01-22-2012, 01:21 PM
2hbh covers that side lefty.
Now, do you want to convert to 1hfh lefty, needing a new 2hbh lefty also?
Learning a 1hfh lefty takes very little time.
Learning a lefty serve (as a rightie player), can take several years alone.
2hbh usually takes care of itself.

DeShaun
01-22-2012, 01:41 PM
2hbh covers that side lefty.
Now, do you want to convert to 1hfh lefty, needing a new 2hbh lefty also?
Learning a 1hfh lefty takes very little time.
Learning a lefty serve (as a rightie player), can take several years alone.
2hbh usually takes care of itself.

Yeah, the lefty 2hbh took care of itself immediately, It was astonishing how naturally the stroke came together, within minutes it felt match-ready. I'm serious.
The lefty 1hfh however felt extremely awkward. The best I could do was mimic a McEnroe type forehand coming from a very low take-back. On the forehand I could not for the life of me manage to take the racket back high nor trace a circular-ish swing path. All I could do was hit a flattish stroke from a very low forward swing to a finish of only medium height.

I do not plan on learning to serve lefty.

I guess what I would like to learn is how to hit a 1hfh lefty.

Thanks Lee

LeeD
01-22-2012, 02:08 PM
My rightie forehand is definetely stronger than my normal lefty, can hit more angles, is more consistent, can volley better, and generally looks sounder. I play lefty because of my lefty serve.
There's a gang around one of our local courts inhabited by player's wearing ORANGE POWER tops and long pants. One guy is a solid 5.0 rightie, and maybe a 4.5 lefty forehand. His Bro a notch below. Their "dad" a natural rigthie slicer, but lefty topspinner, another 2 notches down.
I think the 5.0 can get better by using his backhand, if he's not injured.
I know the 4.5 can be better just sticking to his backhand.
Power and ball speed is nice, but variety can trump that with less energy and mental toughness.
Both those guys don't aim for Q's really, and working on a VARIED game would require less practice than trying to cover all bases.

DeShaun
01-22-2012, 02:40 PM
My rightie forehand is definetely stronger than my normal lefty, can hit more angles, is more consistent, can volley better, and generally looks sounder. I play lefty because of my lefty serve.
There's a gang around one of our local courts inhabited by player's wearing ORANGE POWER tops and long pants. One guy is a solid 5.0 rightie, and maybe a 4.5 lefty forehand. His Bro a notch below. Their "dad" a natural rigthie slicer, but lefty topspinner, another 2 notches down.
I think the 5.0 can get better by using his backhand, if he's not injured.
I know the 4.5 can be better just sticking to his backhand.
Power and ball speed is nice, but variety can trump that with less energy and mental toughness.
Both those guys don't aim for Q's really, and working on a VARIED game would require less practice than trying to cover all bases.

Yeah I had some trouble lefty trying to hit forehand volleys, but nothing that I won't overcome. My real concern is for the awkwardness I had swinging lefty forehands with topspin, almost nothing about it felt free and natural, maybe because I'm used to using plenty of arm and wrist on my normal righty forehands which may explain my (right) elbow injury. I really just need to return to the hitting wall, back up far away from it and start hitting out big relaxed forehands with my left hand.

LeeD
01-23-2012, 11:12 AM
I agree standing well back from the wall, to first develop a sound powerful stroke with a LITTLE topspin, get the posture grooved, then move forwards for faster repetitions, more topspin, and faster rackethead speed.
If that topspin never comes on the lefty forehand, dump it.