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TheLambsheadrep
12-27-2012, 11:23 AM
This was the last post on the other thread:
"I didn't say anything about flexion or extension. Forgot to mention them.
They are in the mix too.

I didn't say there is 'no order'. The order and degree can be forced intentionally with muscle control or you can force the order with the setup in the takeback and just 'letting it happen in the order you intended ' or you can just let it rip and see what happens however I think most people control what happens with one of the 1st 2 methods.
It depends on the player and the situation.

I'm not a coach and have no experience teaching tennis children but I would suspect there is more of a structured swing plan implemented for them.

You can accomplish the same type of shot many different ways. I can hit a high heavy topspin cc shot several ways. I can use forearm pronation early or late or almost no pronation or utilizing isr for the spin or use a very steep low to high swing with x amount of deviation or a more level swing with y amount of deviation and z amount of pronation or using a pretty locked hitting structure with a ww or with a semi straight arm and wristing it with a whippy type swing etc.
It just depends on how i'm feeling or how i'm hitting that day or how well my legs are moving and how much time i have to set up etc.

I don't think there's a set preferred order. But maybe some coaches on here will tell you otherwise. It's simple and yet complicated which is why many of us spend a lot of time here discussing such things."

I just got back from Christmas vacation, and hope everyone had a Merry Christmas or happy holidays. Since I just got back, I will need to look over the last post again, but I did want to say that when teaching children, there is a structured swing plan but it's broken down into steps. Trying to explain the whole swing in one motion or lecture will get a coach nowhere, so we - take the main points of the swing, give them a catchy name (depending on the age of the student) so they specifically remember to include it in the process, and let the student blend them all together. At first it is robotic since it's a step-by-step process, but it eventually becomes natural because there was an order initially given. If there are pronations and other movements that are certainly always involved in the "correct" way to swing, my mind goes to the step-by-step coaching method that allows a student to understand when they occur.

I am just trying to understand when all of these movements are meant to take place. I understand that unless you are in the same position, time the ball the same, and hit in the same direction all the time, there will be variations in the swing. I know I can't ask someone to break down every type of shot since one can argue that there are infinite shots, but I was just hoping for a generalization.

gregor.b
12-27-2012, 11:34 AM
DO NOT try to explain any of that stuff to children. They will soon come to associate tennis with chores or even worse learning and lose interest. As for your dilemma, have you thought about physical training rather than theorizing?

You will find it works much more effectively and the body does automatically compensate after a small period to adjust to what the mind is telling it.

For example, it you are hitting the ball too short with too much spin, make the stroke LONGER for more depth, don't hit it harder as you will create more racquet head speed and spin and it will drop shorter. If you are hitting too long, try coming a LITTLE more low to high.

The body will do what you tell it to. It may take a while to become automatic, but the body is a pretty clever unit. Trust it.

TheLambsheadrep
12-27-2012, 03:13 PM
DO NOT try to explain any of that stuff to children. They will soon come to associate tennis with chores or even worse learning and lose interest. As for your dilemma, have you thought about physical training rather than theorizing?

You will find it works much more effectively and the body does automatically compensate after a small period to adjust to what the mind is telling it.

For example, it you are hitting the ball too short with too much spin, make the stroke LONGER for more depth, don't hit it harder as you will create more racquet head speed and spin and it will drop shorter. If you are hitting too long, try coming a LITTLE more low to high.

The body will do what you tell it to. It may take a while to become automatic, but the body is a pretty clever unit. Trust it.


I would not teach this to kids, it would go WAY over their heads haha. This is for me to understand when I should aim to willingly pronate/perform arm movements during the forward acceleration

TheLambsheadrep
01-24-2013, 09:21 PM
So, I haven’t given this subject a lot of thought since I started this new thread, but I recorded my strokes last week and watching them has been eye opening. It is something everyone should do, and should pretty much be a requirement to talk on the subject (I know this would have made it easier for me to understand what myself and others were talking about). When I talk about my video I know I am by no means a pro, I am a rusty 4.0 at best, but I am seeing some good stuff here and want to ramble about it :)



Now that I have seen my shots on video, I can say that the pronation in the take back is mostly natural for me (I am training myself to do it on every shot) and the pronation in the follow through is totally natural. I was having a hard time grasping the follow through pronation before, thinking it was a physical step in the swing and wondering when to implement it. But during the filming of the strokes, I didn’t think about doing it even once. One of the reasons I wanted to make the video was to see how my follow through generally ends up, and I got to view that plus see THAT THIS HAS TO BE WHY IT APPEARS THAT THE PROS ARE INTENTIONALLY SNAPPING THEIR WRISTS. Again, I am not a pro by any means but I saw a lot of good and natural tennis motions I didn’t necessarily know I was doing in my video, including the biomechanical signs of the SSC.

On another topic, a post by 1HBH Rocks said (referring to Fed and Nadal) said “The reason they hit with a straight arm is that they perform an arm extension in their take back while they pronate their forearm a bit.” I see truth in this when watching my video, even though it is not always the full case with the pros or me. A lot of slow motion analysis shows that Fed and Nadal don’t have the most radical take back pronations and hit with straight arms, while pros that do have pretty radical take back pronations (Nadal, Wawrinka off the top of my head) have bent arms and pros with little, if any, take back pronations (Murray, Blake, Agassi) have bent arms as well. To try to build on this, I attempted to find a correlation between how parallel the racquet face gets to the court before the forward swing and if it results in a straight/bent arm swing, but found no real pattern. Could grip or footwork have something to do with it, I do not know. As for me, on some of my shots I have a straight arm and on others I don’t, and I’m not seeing a great reason as to why. I thought it could have been about the height of the oncoming ball, but there is not enough consistency to say that is so. The most apparent thing I see (and this should also be common sense) is that when I took the ball early, I almost always had a straight arm as I am reaching for the ball, but the opposite could not be said about late/close to the feet shots. Anyway, I found this interesting and will continue to look into it.

user92626
01-24-2013, 10:20 PM
So, I havenít given this subject a lot of thought since I started this new thread, but I recorded my strokes last week and watching them has been eye opening. It is something everyone should do, and should pretty much be a requirement to talk on the subject (I know this would have made it easier for me to understand what myself and others were talking about). When I talk about my video I know I am by no means a pro, I am a rusty 4.0 at best, but I am seeing some good stuff here and want to ramble about it :)



Now that I have seen my shots on video, I can say that the pronation in the take back is mostly natural for me (I am training myself to do it on every shot) and the pronation in the follow through is totally natural. I was having a hard time grasping the follow through pronation before, thinking it was a physical step in the swing and wondering when to implement it. But during the filming of the strokes, I didnít think about doing it even once.


The pronations being natural were also my experience and observation, too. That's why in another thread I was saying to ignore it. Focusing on pronation or rotation as a physical step to do would likely be detrimental and confusing.

TheCheese
01-24-2013, 10:42 PM
All this talk about the forehand and pronation, blah blah blah lately has gotten out of hand.

Someone should just make a video and SHOW what they're talking about.

TheLambsheadrep
01-25-2013, 07:11 AM
All this talk about the forehand and pronation, blah blah blah lately has gotten out of hand.

Someone should just make a video and SHOW what they're talking about.

I will try to get some forehands on youtube today

TheLambsheadrep
01-25-2013, 05:31 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DdSWqlFGHqE&feature=youtu.be

here is something I had filmed about a week ago while NC was in the 50s-70s, and it's a good thing I did because everything outside is now coated in ice.

the video is mainly forehands, but I have done a lot of good reflection and realization from it. the slow-mo and stop motion break down is at 2:28, but I hope you will look at all the whole video and comment on the strokes.

Even though I didn't make the video for or against the wrist snap argument specifically, I feel that I can now decide for myself. As I stated in post #4 here, if you are swinging anything like the pros (and I'm not claiming to be), there is minimal to no intentional wrist movement. I can honestly say that I was just swinging through the ball, no intentional wrist flicking, radial deviation, or anything of the sort. I do think there are some exceptions (see http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vdNMKAT3k10 at 38 seconds, for example. it's hard to fathom that much forearm speed and the follow through without wrist action), but they are mainly from bad positioning or bad foot work.

I also mentioned that the proper follow through pronation, with no voluntary wrist action, was due to the stretch shortening cycle based on Solat's explanation (post #6 at http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=112708) and other readings. I have really been focusing lately on getting the racquet face that will make contact to face behind me on the take back, as mentioned in talks about the SSC and performed by many top pros (to varying degrees). In many of my shots I see that the racquet is making between a 45 and 90 degree angle with my forearm right before contact, so I just want to make sure this is evidence of the SSC and that's it's helped by the racquet face facing behind me. Also, I noticed that Murray doesn't have much of a racquet face turn back at all, but at the lowest part of his back swing his contact strings are facing down and parallel to the ground. What does this accomplish, and how does it effect SSC?

Without getting too deep into another dividing topic, I did lead up the main racquet of the video to 383 grams, 7.5 pts HL, and SW of 365, so without the calculations in front of me i think the Mgr/I is just under 21. It feels absolutely awesome, and like the video convinced me the wrist is not active, I am also convinced there is something to Mgr/I. By the way, the racquet is a Ti. Carbon 5001, and the strings are the FACTORY SYNTHETIC. That's right, I haven't changed out the strings yet, and I am still getting great results with spin, accuracy, and consistency. Can't wait to get some kevlar in there

Cheetah
01-25-2013, 06:32 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DdSWqlFGHqE&feature=youtu.be

here is something I had filmed about a week ago while NC was in the 50s-70s, and it's a good thing I did because everything outside is now coated in ice.

the video is mainly forehands, but I have done a lot of good reflection and realization from it. the slow-mo and stop motion break down is at 2:28, but I hope you will look at all the whole video and comment on the strokes.

Even though I didn't make the video for or against the wrist snap argument specifically, I feel that I can now decide for myself. As I stated in post #4 here, if you are swinging anything like the pros (and I'm not claiming to be), there is minimal to no intentional wrist movement. I can honestly say that I was just swinging through the ball, no intentional wrist flicking, radial deviation, or anything of the sort. I do think there are some exceptions (see http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vdNMKAT3k10 at 38 seconds, for example. it's hard to fathom that much forearm speed and the follow through without wrist action), but they are mainly from bad positioning or bad foot work.

I also mentioned that the proper follow through pronation, with no voluntary wrist action, was due to the stretch shortening cycle based on Solat's explanation (post #6 at http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=112708) and other readings. I have really been focusing lately on getting the racquet face that will make contact to face behind me on the take back, as mentioned in talks about the SSC and performed by many top pros (to varying degrees). In many of my shots I see that the racquet is making between a 45 and 90 degree angle with my forearm right before contact, so I just want to make sure this is evidence of the SSC and that's it's helped by the racquet face facing behind me. Also, I noticed that Murray doesn't have much of a racquet face turn back at all, but at the lowest part of his back swing his contact strings are facing down and parallel to the ground. What does this accomplish, and how does it effect SSC?

Without getting too deep into another dividing topic, I did lead up the main racquet of the video to 383 grams, 7.5 pts HL, and SW of 365, so without the calculations in front of me i think the Mgr/I is just under 21. It feels absolutely awesome, and like the video convinced me the wrist is not active, I am also convinced there is something to Mgr/I. By the way, the racquet is a Ti. Carbon 5001, and the strings are the FACTORY SYNTHETIC. That's right, I haven't changed out the strings yet, and I am still getting great results with spin, accuracy, and consistency. Can't wait to get some kevlar in there

i haven't played around with mgr/i yet. everytime i read up on it i give up because of all the banter back and forth and i get confused.
what have you noticed with it?

swing path looks good i guess. you should really work on it though. you're wasting a lot of energy and it's not repeatable due to your stance and footwork. and your stroke won't hold up against a heavy ball from say for example.. me. haha.

what grip is that? looks like a mild eastern.

Cheetah
01-25-2013, 06:58 PM
also, your pronation is not because of the ssc. it's because you have a decent swing path and your arm is relatively loose. in that case your arm has no choice but to pronate. You have almost no ssc going on. close to zero because of your takeback and setup just before going forward. couple of issues there. I could explain if you want me to.

TheLambsheadrep
01-25-2013, 06:59 PM
i haven't played around with mgr/i yet. everytime i read up on it i give up because of all the banter back and forth and i get confused.
what have you noticed with it?

swing path looks good i guess. you should really work on it though. you're wasting a lot of energy and it's not repeatable due to your stance and footwork. and your stroke won't hold up against a heavy ball from say for example.. me. haha.

what grip is that? looks like a mild eastern.

after optimizing Mgr/I, I've been able to play more consistently and feel like I still hit with solid contact outside of my strike zone. The optimal number is good and all, but I think people think too much about it, and I believe the reason there's debate is because people don't think there's a magic number. It's really about what gets you to that number - the weight, the balance, and the swing weight. In order to have a relevant optimized number (this is also an argument against it - you can get the/your optimized number with various combinations of weight, balance, and SW using calculus to figure out the individual numbers on a curve. Someone did this and sound they could get Mgr/I to 21 with like a 6oz racquet or something, and while you can, it should be obvious that's not the point), you need a pretty hefty stick - I couldnt get the Mgr/I around 21 without the weight being over 13oz. That weight is going to make the shots feel more solid. Then, you need a pretty HL balance, which makes the racquet swingable. The last thing also turns people off - you'll need a pretty high SW, but that comes with the territory of a high weight to begin with. The high SW is free power and stablizes the racquet against a heavy ball (such as yours :-P ). All in all, it's the combination of racquet characteristics that get that magic optimized number, not the other way around. I def recommend to anyone to try it.

Where am I wasting energy? And during matches and even just hitting for fun when I'm being moved around I def get more of a knee bend and better foot work going. This was a casual session, but yes, foot work is very important to start the kinetic chain, so thanks for lookin' out for me haha. And I've rallied against many a heavy ball, is that a challenge? :twisted:

Oh, and I use a semi western forehand

TheLambsheadrep
01-25-2013, 07:00 PM
also, your pronation is not because of the ssc. it's because you have a decent swing path and your arm is relatively loose. in that case your arm has no choice but to pronate. You have almost no ssc going on. close to zero because of your takeback and setup just before going forward. couple of issues there. I could explain if you want me to.

I would appreciate that, always up for getting better. Was I wrong in understanding Solat's explanation of the SSC? Or was he wrong...?

Cheetah
01-25-2013, 07:02 PM
lemme finish my lasagna and i'll get back to you in a bit

TheLambsheadrep
01-25-2013, 07:06 PM
lemme finish my lasagna and i'll get back to you in a bit

No rush, people should have many better things to do then rush to help me haha. Thanks in advance

Cheetah
01-25-2013, 07:48 PM
well...

I was going to say a lot about your footwork and stance but you said you were being casual so i'll give you the benefit of the doubt there.

you do a lot of things pretty well actually. swing path is great. you just don't do all the good things together. meaning on some swings your contact point is good but rotation is off. or pronation is good but extension is lacking etc.

your takeback is too far back which is why your not getting good ssc. you take the racquet all the way back and there it becomes disconnected from your rotation so you have to use your arm to do all the work. lots of players have a long takeback like that but they use the arm muscles to move the arm ahead while the torso is rotating and then when it's caught up to the correct spot then the torso and arm is in sync and move together as a unit.

but you do your take back and you rotate but you can see while you are rotating your arm catches up and passes your rotation. they never move together. you can really see it on the side view at the end. your arm goes right past your body. you're loosing a lot of oomph right there.

just to get the feel you might want to try making your takeback much shorter. just for experimenting make it very short like fed's. it will feel uncomfortable but try it for like 20 strokes. once you figure out how to make contact like that you will see you will have much more power. Then you can adjust things to your liking.

If your takeback is shorter then when you rotate your arm will have 'room to breath' and will be pulled by the rotation and there it will stretch and give you the ssc action.

Also the djokovic-like takeback you are doing is not good for your grip style. That kind of takeback is natural for a more extreme grip because that is the natural path it will take while maintaining a 'neutral wrist' position during the takeback and it will lay the racquet flat (pat the dog) at the end of the takeback. With your grip, doing that takeback puts tension (whether u are aware of it or not) in your wrist and it doesn't let you get into a pat the dog position thereby robbing you of ssc and potential topspin. look at the face of your racquet at the end of the takeback. not so good.
You might want to try copying the takeback of a pro that has a semi western grip.

Your topspin. so so haha. you get some good spin sometimes but when you do i can see you really have to work for it. Your topspin is good but it's not biting and there is no sidespin component on it. I'm guessing you hit a lot of balls long. it doesn't have to be that way. In addition to the above mentioned stuff you might want to make contact about 3 or 4 or so more inches out in front. your contact point is good and it's well out in front but if you move it out a little more then it will be at the point just before your racquet starts moving to the side and also where your wrist starts to deviate. currently your racquet is going thru it a little more than i'd like. That way you'll get more natural spin with sidespin and also you'll be able to generate a lot more because your wrist will naturally be turning at that point so you'll be able to give it a bit more manually right there w/o doing funky arm movements. it will be more natural. plus you'll be able to swing harder because the harder you swing the more your wrist will be moving right at that sweet spot. just a couple of inches. it will be hard to make the adjustments but it will work.

... and dump the closed stance lol.

TheLambsheadrep
01-25-2013, 07:56 PM
Thanks for all of that. I'm off to bed soon so I will take this in, digest it tonight, and get back to the thread tomorrow. Speaking of which, how was your lasagna?

And just curious, do you do any coaching?

Cheetah
01-25-2013, 08:08 PM
it was yummy thanks.
not a coach. just been playing since i was 4. lots of lessons. tennis freak. etc.

TheLambsheadrep
01-25-2013, 08:27 PM
Nice. I went to a SUNY college with a D3 program, and the same semester I was offered a spot on the team I got a job as an RA. After dual Bio and Anth degrees plus the gf (that's a major time commitment in itself), I had room essentially for doing one or the other, and D3 tennis doesn't pay the bills. I still hit with friends that were on the team, and that was good enough for me at the time.

But now it really is time for bed, so another thank you for tonight and I will post again tomorrow

TheLambsheadrep
01-26-2013, 12:33 PM
I've been watching these videos and used them to base my following post on:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Me1tzm1nnWk
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xLJICtcehCo
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fp_XHBXGbUs
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1pcNfnWi-bs
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cnnKt_SeJ6s
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D2DWZaFcaU0

TheLambsheadrep
01-26-2013, 12:34 PM
As the racquet is brought up from the neutral position (for a forehand) for the initial part of the back swing, Nadal, Federer, Novak, Murray, Blake, and Agassi all do have a bend in the elbow. Sometimes it lasts for only a second before straightening out, sometimes it lasts the entire stroke. Even sometimes the elbow bend is initially present, and then the arm becomes straight at some point, then right before contact the elbow bends again (Murray). I see that I also have a bend at first, but the motion to stretch out my arm up and toward the back fence gets rid of it quickly. Sitting here right now, I can feel the difference between keeping my elbow bent for a long time vs a short time on the take back – the long time motion is dictated by the arm/forearm, and I can feel the rotation of the racquet is more compact as it goes around my elbow like an upside down pendulum. The short time motion is dictated by my shoulder, which produces that higher-reaching and loopier back swing, and unless I willingly pull my elbow in to make it bend (which I would think is not good technique, but how does Murray do it?), it doesn’t seem to bend again. So take back dictated by the elbow is good, while by the shoulder is bad…?


I can see from the video that the pro with the closest initial backswing to mine definitely is Novak (I’ll explain why down below), and he has the head of the racquet level with his head most of the time, half way over his head at best, when he brings it up from the neutral position for a forehand. I’m assuming that keeping the racquet head lower forces him to have a prolonged elbow bend or vice versa. I see that I’m getting the whole head of the racquet over my head sometimes if not most times. So I’ll make keeping the racquet head at my head level a habit. I do see, thought, that Novak outstretches his arm back horizontally about the same as I do (sometimes I do more, sometime he does), but so does Murray, Blake, and Agassi (Agassi seems to get the racquet head over his head quite a bit, too). I think I’m seeing Federer to it a fair amount as well, but maybe not as often. Nadal almost appears to do straight down drop of the arm to about 45 degrees, so he’s the outlier in this group. So is having the arm stretched back near horizontal fine, and is having the take back from your elbow, not the shoulder, the way to doing it correctly?


The pronation of the racquet back early in the back swing was something I saw from a Jeff Salzenstein video on youtube about Novak’s take back and thought I’d try it out. I can see what you’re saying about tension because I have to force it - since I would say until I tried the technique from that video I was taking the racquet back more like Murray (the first 13 seconds of my video is more like I used to hit before trying the Novak turn), who looks like he implements very little pronation on the take back (especially early in the take back, but he does get the racquet face parallel to the ground at the lowest point of the back swing which requires pronation). This also occurs with Blake and Agassi, and if I have read correct information, all three of them used the SW grip. It would make sense if that was the case, but in rallies I feel I have been able to generate more topspin pronating back like Novak does. I know Agassi and Blake both could generate good topspin but were more known as flat hitters, is that the case with Murray (I don’t follow him as much)? How are the three of them able to go from flat to topspin without the drastic Novak pronation, is late pronation (like Murray) and not early pronation (like Novak) the key for a SW forehand? Is the tension created with the Novak pronation what’s cutting down on my ssc (even though I am seeing my wrist back before contact, I’m guessing there needs to be more than that and the wrist bend isn’t the only sign of the ssc)?

TheLambsheadrep
01-26-2013, 12:35 PM
I will post on the topspin stuff later, this took a while haha

Cheetah
01-26-2013, 01:19 PM
Even sometimes the elbow bend is initially present, and then the arm becomes straight at some point, then right before contact the elbow bends again (Murray).

funny you should mention murray. i was going to list him last night as sort of an exception. his forehand is kind of unique. his wrist at the end of the takeback is not in a neutral position which is why he doesn't get the racquet flip at the and and it's one reason he has less topspin than others. however he does bend the arm earlier than you said. it's hard to tell in the vid you posted. look at these vids. If you freeze it you can see he bends right away after the first forward movement. Then the ssc kicks in and his arm catches up. By contact his arm and body are in sync and make contact as a unit. These are great vids of murray. His swing looks great here.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YerH0-8n_0w

I do see, thought, that Novak outstretches his arm back horizontally about the same as I do. So is having the arm stretched back near horizontal fine, and is having the take back from your elbow, not the shoulder, the way to doing it correctly?

Yes, but look how they get the racquet in ptd. You don't do that. Your wrist is kind of locked in place. Plus look how loose their wrist is. The racquet flies back as they start going forward. this is the stretch that throws the racquet forward.

Also look at their upper arm from the shoulder to the elbow. This area stays with the torso the whole time. This is important. The torso rotates, the upper arm moves with it and the loose forearm and wrist lags behind. This pull creates the stretch and it 'catches up' just before contact. Your upper arm moves before your torso on it's own then your torso rotates but your arm is moving independently and passes your torso. It's 'disconnected'.

The vid you posted of Novac is not indicative of his match play form. I think he was just starting to warm up there. This video here is better and more closely matches his match form. Notice his wrist is in a neutral position during takeback. It's not flexed, extended or deviated and because of his grip is goes up high and twisted like that. But his wrist is totally neutral. Also notice his upper arm stays with the torso during the forward swing.
This is what people mean when they say 'lead with the elbow'. The elbow moves forward ahead of the wrist during the swing. The wrist and racquet lag behind. Then when rotation slows and/or is facing the net the forearm is 'whipped' around to contact. It's more like a whip type action. Not really a 'push' or a 'swing'.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mWOVWARCxbU

The pronation of the racquet back early in the back swing was something I saw from a Jeff Salzenstein video on youtube about Novak’s take back and thought I’d try it out.

Yes i know that video. I disagree with it. But I love Jeff. If you look at pros the only ones who have that kind of takeback are players with an extreme semi grip. I have the same grip. Nishikori has that grip and takeback also. You won't be able to find a semi-western or eastern grip pro w/ that takeback.

Is the tension created with the Novak pronation what’s cutting down on my ssc (even though I am seeing my wrist back before contact, I’m guessing there needs to be more than that and the wrist bend isn’t the only sign of the ssc)?

You need to have the face slightly higher than the wrist and pointing more to the side fence. usually at a 45degree ish angle. This position will cause the racquet to flip down and back when you move forward. Look at all those vids. They all get the face into this position just before going forward. Your racquet points directly to the backfence and is not facing the ground so all of that potential ssc is killed right there.

go to virtualtennisacademy.com. sign up. it's free. then watch the 'millenium forehand' video. it's great. he goes into this step by step and he's and atp/wta coach. Watch that vid and also read his forehand article.

TheLambsheadrep
01-26-2013, 05:08 PM
this is another slow mo video I watched of Murray and should have posted the first time http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l5guJYUKgd0 you can see the bend-straight-bend right from the first forehand.

I'm going to look over your Novak video tonight, thanks for that. I am also going to sign up for that website and post back on what I learn. Btw, Murray does have a SW forehand like Agassi and Blake, correct? Should the fact that his stroke is "an exception" discourage me from trying to learn from it? He would be a more modern example of what I could be doing, where Agassi has more of a classic stroke. Blake tends to lean toward Agassi with strokes I think, too. Any other good SW players that you think I should study based on my video?

TheLambsheadrep
01-27-2013, 04:51 PM
but you do your take back and you rotate but you can see while you are rotating your arm catches up and passes your rotation. they never move together. you can really see it on the side view at the end. your arm goes right past your body. you're loosing a lot of oomph right there.

just to get the feel you might want to try making your take back much shorter. just for experimenting make it very short like fed's. it will feel uncomfortable but try it for like 20 strokes. once you figure out how to make contact like that you will see you will have much more power. Then you can adjust things to your liking.

If your take back is shorter then when you rotate your arm will have 'room to breath' and will be pulled by the rotation and there it will stretch and give you the ssc action.

I do want to talk about top spin like I said before, but I have been thinking about this today - for the initial part of the short take back, would you say that you are trying to perform an external rotation of the shoulder with or without incorporating elbow movement? In the pro videos I linked in the thread plus others available, during their take backs I can't tell 100% if even the same player will always try to make the racquet follow a pendulum motion (approximately, and from external rotation of the shoulder) up with the elbow acting like the fixed point/pivot point (being stationary as much as possible, any motion backward is from body rotation), or if the elbow is being pulled back (elbow in the gut motion, going however much or little they want the elbow back) as external rotation of the shoulder still takes place. In short - as the racquet goes up and back during the initial part of the take back via the shoulder, should the elbow also help bring the racquet back and then down?

Also, even though this is not quoted, I'm gonna mention neutral stance. I see Fed has it a lot in casual hitting, and I think I do it more when being casual too, but I have a feeling he opens up a lot more than I do in real play. It's just a habit of mine, but I think it also plays a part in limiting ssc - with a more open stance, you can load up the back/outside foot and twist the body, letting the uncoiling of the body whip the forehand around to contact. In my video, I'm seeing that I am facing sideways which is good, but have little to no coiling. I am going to work on coiling sideways instead of just facing sideways, I think that should help, right?

Cheetah
01-27-2013, 05:58 PM
I do want to talk about top spin like I said before, but I have been thinking about this today - for the initial part of the short take back, would you say that you are trying to perform an external rotation of the shoulder with or without incorporating elbow movement? In the pro videos I linked in the thread plus others available, during their take backs I can't tell 100% if even the same player will always try to make the racquet follow a pendulum motion (approximately, and from external rotation of the shoulder) up with the elbow acting like the fixed point/pivot point (being stationary as much as possible, any motion backward is from body rotation), or if the elbow is being pulled back (elbow in the gut motion, going however much or little they want the elbow back) as external rotation of the shoulder still takes place. In short - as the racquet goes up and back during the initial part of the take back via the shoulder, should the elbow also help bring the racquet back and then down?

Also, even though this is not quoted, I'm gonna mention closed stance. I see Fed has it a lot in casual hitting, and I think I do it more when being casual too, but I have a feeling he opens up a lot more than I do in real play. It's just a habit of mine, but I think it also plays a part in limiting ssc - with a more open stance, you can load up the back/outside foot and twist the body, letting the uncoiling of the body whip the forehand around to contact. In my video, I'm seeing that I am facing sideways which is good, but have little to no coiling. I am going to work on coiling sideways instead of just facing sideways, I think that should help, right?

I don't understand what you're saying in the 1st paragraph. Are you sure you're talking about external shoulder rotation? Maybe you can word it differently.
Also this is addressed in the video on the site i told you about.

Yes you don't coil in your strokes. you just turn sideways. the shoulders should be turned more than the hips.
You should be getting power from the body and control from the arm. maybe about 70/30 or even 80/20 body/arm

TheLambsheadrep
01-27-2013, 06:05 PM
I don't understand what you're saying in the 1st paragraph. Are you sure you're talking about external shoulder rotation? Maybe you can word it differently.
Also this is addressed in the video on the site i told you about.


I will check the website and get back to you, I know it came out really confusing but it's just how I saw it in my head.

Btw, I think TheCheese answered a question I had on what determines a shot being straight armed or bent. This is what he said and how I responded (my response has to do with how you guessed I hit balls long. I don't do it often when I go for topspin, but sometimes when I flatten a shot out it takes off):

TheCheese - What is important is whether you are using pronation vs supination in the transition between the takeback and forward swing.


Me - TheCheese, that makes perfect sense actually. You saw on my video how much I was pronating on the take back, plus this is confirmed by pro slow mo videos, so thanks!

I was wondering before this if supination from bad timing and/ or bad technique was causing some of my seemed-to-be regular shots to hit the back fence once in a while. After watching the video (9 seconds in) it appears that it's just me getting too under the ball and swinging across my body, which seems to create an upwards swing path. Could supination still have a hand in this?

Cheetah
01-27-2013, 07:11 PM
you're position @ :09s looks pretty good. I think they were launched because of the face angle at contact. swing path is fine. this is one reason i think you hit too late. if contact was made more out in front there would have more brushing action. You should also try to work on closing the racquet face. That would happen naturally if you used your body to bring the racquet around instead of your arm because if you notice if you pause it at 09s the racquet is in the correct position. face is closed. buttcap pointed. if you would have just rotated keeping that structure then that would have been a good hit.

now i now why i thought you had a conservative grip.
Here's a good tip: change your grip style. That grip style you are using is not the best for the type of swing you are going for. I'm not talking about semiwestern/eastern etc. semi is fine. I'm referring to the way you hold your semi.
I highly recommend you grip the racquet all the way down to the end of the buttcap and don't spread your fingers the way you are doing. The way you are holding it is more conducive to an old school neutral stance linear swing powered by the arm. You are choking up and your fingers are spread.

If you hold the racquet all the way at the bottom with the heel pad actually extending past the buttcap in more of a fist like grip you get noticeably more racquet head speed, spin, pronation and deviation. Just try like 20 shadow swings with it. You will feel uncomfortable for a bit like you have no control. but after a few swings you will adjust as you will see that the racquet moves more freely and most importantly the racquet face will move in a more direct correspondence to how your hand moves. it will mirror what your hand does better than what you are doing now. Hard to explain but it gives more control with less effort (provided you don't arm the ball). You just have to adapt a little and figure out where to put the pressure. Also this grip let's the wrist flex more. the handle doesn't get in the way. So if you wanted u could give a touch of flex for some extra power on some shots. but if don't want to flex the wrist then this grip forces / encourages you to swing with more body so that the wrist stays laid back at contact without you having to manually hold the wrist back with tension. It stays loose. It's a much better grip imo.

If you look at the pros almost all of them hold the racquet all the down and even a little past the buttcap (exceptions would be verdasco) and they all hold it more in a fist type shape. Give it a try.

https://encrypted-tbn3.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcTqq3kLojbh4jvAkxiCLk9Xr73Elatj9 sXgrL9z3vHH_Q9KizUhMA
https://encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcTSBbUv95ZB5dKHYvrBQ-RBOyR_2MrIkOsWYg16flvNqwgKmrXm
https://encrypted-tbn2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcScLidHLzJyHBequrbBMr74H-oA0k-FuoC7hqQTNXtVaUXLLL25
https://encrypted-tbn3.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSSp8u6UhqL4mmgWia3leXWmnIPtEmCv e8Eb6wcSDwtrIHbGkSCIA

TheLambsheadrep
01-27-2013, 08:16 PM
you're position @ :09s looks pretty good. I think they were launched because of the face angle at contact. swing path is fine. this is one reason i think you hit too late. if contact was made more out in front there would have more brushing action. You should also try to work on closing the racquet face. That would happen naturally if you used your body to bring the racquet around instead of your arm because if you notice if you pause it at 09s the racquet is in the correct position. face is closed. buttcap pointed. if you would have just rotated keeping that structure then that would have been a good hit.

now i now why i thought you had a conservative grip.
Here's a good tip: change your grip style. That grip style you are using is not the best for the type of swing you are going for. I'm not talking about semiwestern/eastern etc. semi is fine. I'm referring to the way you hold your semi.
I highly recommend you grip the racquet all the way down to the end of the buttcap and don't spread your fingers the way you are doing. The way you are holding it is more conducive to an old school neutral stance linear swing powered by the arm. You are choking up and your fingers are spread.

If you hold the racquet all the way at the bottom with the heel pad actually extending past the buttcap in more of a fist like grip you get noticeably more racquet head speed, spin, pronation and deviation. Just try like 20 shadow swings with it. You will feel uncomfortable for a bit like you have no control. but after a few swings you will adjust as you will see that the racquet moves more freely and most importantly the racquet face will move in a more direct correspondence to how your hand moves. it will mirror what your hand does better than what you are doing now. Hard to explain but it gives more control with less effort (provided you don't arm the ball). You just have to adapt a little and figure out where to put the pressure. Also this grip let's the wrist flex more. the handle doesn't get in the way. So if you wanted u could give a touch of flex for some extra power on some shots. but if don't want to flex the wrist then this grip forces / encourages you to swing with more body so that the wrist stays laid back at contact without you having to manually hold the wrist back with tension. It stays loose. It's a much better grip imo.

If you look at the pros almost all of them hold the racquet all the down and even a little past the buttcap (exceptions would be verdasco) and they all hold it more in a fist type shape. Give it a try.

https://encrypted-tbn3.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcTqq3kLojbh4jvAkxiCLk9Xr73Elatj9 sXgrL9z3vHH_Q9KizUhMA
https://encrypted-tbn0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcTSBbUv95ZB5dKHYvrBQ-RBOyR_2MrIkOsWYg16flvNqwgKmrXm
https://encrypted-tbn2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcScLidHLzJyHBequrbBMr74H-oA0k-FuoC7hqQTNXtVaUXLLL25
https://encrypted-tbn3.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSSp8u6UhqL4mmgWia3leXWmnIPtEmCv e8Eb6wcSDwtrIHbGkSCIA

I will check this out, thanks again! Btw, I went to the website but the pages are giving me problems, is this the same article? http://www.tennisforum.com/showthread.php?t=70102

Cheetah
01-27-2013, 08:32 PM
I will check this out, thanks again! Btw, I went to the website but the pages are giving me problems, is this the same article? http://www.tennisforum.com/showthread.php?t=70102

no. virtualtennisacademy.com

TheLambsheadrep
01-27-2013, 09:06 PM
no. virtualtennisacademy.com

I was able to make an account, but when I click login or any of the other links I get blank pages. I will delete my cookies and keep trying

TheLambsheadrep
01-27-2013, 10:02 PM
Yes, but look how they get the racquet in ptd. You don't do that. Your wrist is kind of locked in place. Plus look how loose their wrist is. The racquet flies back as they start going forward. this is the stretch that throws the racquet forward.

Real quick - what's ptd.? And I've been watching more videos, and pros with a large double bend seem to have little to no scc. here's one good example when you break it into slow motion http://www.tennisplayer.net/public/strokearchive/strokearchive_sample_archive.html?AAFHCenterSide1. mov . I'd say it's because the forearm is not "dead" and left hanging to get whipped up to speed, and because it seems that with a double bend the arm above the elbow and the shoulders/torso move as one unit, essentially removing the top half (and starting half) of the whip. Am I just seeing this because it's two in the morning?haha

Cheetah
01-27-2013, 10:14 PM
pat the dog.

nope. they have a lot of ssc. it's not related to how much or what type of bend they have.

agassi's form is old school. pros don't hit like that today.
agassi's spin rate is less than half of what pros get now.

monfils http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DkUSTi4U7Io
kohlschreiber http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K9cR_S7jakA
djoko http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y8AJYfkJ4hc
tsonga http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-1uQcr6xSvs
li na http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yL1Gt3vfeac
ryan harrison http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mxg_qBTuq4U
nishikori http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Do3-geZv9WQ

TheLambsheadrep
01-27-2013, 10:28 PM
Ok, Agassi was prob the wrong pro to check out since we're in the realm of modern tennis, my bad. It does look to me, though, like the more bent/tucked in the elbow remains throughout the back swing, the less ssc there is (which I would think means it's somewhat grip related. Hopefully I'll be right on some part of this and not go 0 for 100 haha)

Cheetah
01-27-2013, 10:35 PM
Ok, Agassi was prob the wrong pro to check out since we're in the realm of modern tennis, my bad. It does look to me, though, like the more bent/tucked in the elbow remains throughout the back swing, the less ssc there is (which I would think means it's somewhat grip related. Hopefully I'll be right on some part of this and not go 0 for 100 haha)

western grip kohlscreiber http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K9cR_S7jakA
eastern grip fed http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vCm6OIjbPr4

opposite ends of the grip spectrum. both have extreme ssc.
it's not related to grip. it's position in set up and loose arm/wrist

TheLambsheadrep
01-27-2013, 10:44 PM
western grip kohlscreiber http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K9cR_S7jakA
eastern grip fed http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vCm6OIjbPr4

opposite ends of the grip spectrum. both have extreme ssc.
it's not related to grip. it's position in set up and loose arm/wrist

But Fed goes straight arm, so an eastern with a straight arm forehand may be an exception of grip since any grip with a straight arm forehand still has full extension of the elbow away from the body. I could be more specific and just say it looks like the more bent/tucked in the elbow remains throughout the back swing, the less ssc there appears to be, is that more accurate? Or is that still too much of a classic stroke mindset?

Cheetah
01-27-2013, 10:50 PM
tsonga's elbow is tucked in extremely close. it almost touches his ribs. lots of ssc. semi western grip. nadal has a straight arm western grip.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kNyfckDtRHM

Cheetah
01-27-2013, 10:54 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9dihL0_w6IM&NR=1&feature=fvwp

TheLambsheadrep
01-27-2013, 11:15 PM
What about http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_CrWFui1jW4

and I think this is very similar your first tsonga video with more of his early stroke http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_VVCiegIGQY I see the wrist gets good whip, but not seeing the same from his forearm (which looks to me like it moves right with the arm above the elbow, which is moving right with the shoulder). the second video describes what I was saying before about half the whip being gone - I know he's crushing the ball but it looks like it's bc the power from his leg push off (he's getting ups!). His arm's kinda lookin' like a dolphin flipper to me there. Either way, this would only be one modern forehand example of what I was saying, so maybe, maybe not

Cheetah
01-27-2013, 11:27 PM
What about http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_CrWFui1jW4

and I think this is very similar your first tsonga video with more of his early stroke http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_VVCiegIGQY I see the wrist gets good whip, but not seeing the same from his forearm (which looks to me like it moves right with the arm above the elbow, which is moving right with the shoulder). the second video describes what I was saying before about half the whip being gone - I know he's crushing the ball but it looks like it's bc the power from his leg push off (he's getting ups!). His arm's kinda lookin' like a dolphin flipper to me there. Either way, this would only be one modern forehand example of what I was saying, so maybe, maybe not

he doesn't get in ptd position and he also doesn't pronate much. that's why.

TheLambsheadrep
01-28-2013, 08:15 PM
you're position @ :09s looks pretty good. I think they were launched because of the face angle at contact. swing path is fine. this is one reason i think you hit too late. if contact was made more out in front there would have more brushing action. You should also try to work on closing the racquet face. That would happen naturally if you used your body to bring the racquet around instead of your arm because if you notice if you pause it at 09s the racquet is in the correct position. face is closed. buttcap pointed. if you would have just rotated keeping that structure then that would have been a good hit.

I am going to hit against the wall again tomorrow and take it up a notch above casual. Like I said before, I believe I do open my stance up and get the knees bent more in a real point (you can find plenty of vids with pros warming up and having very neutral/easy going strokes), but if I want to make these adjustments into real point habits, you gotta play like they're real points. Based on what we've discussed, I'm assuming you would agree that an open stance gives me better upper body rotation potential, and that should help eliminate the fence ball like what 09s would have been.

Btw, I got the video links working on virtualtennisacademy, so I'll be watching the millennium movie after my next post or two

TheLambsheadrep
01-28-2013, 08:28 PM
now i now why i thought you had a conservative grip.
Here's a good tip: change your grip style. That grip style you are using is not the best for the type of swing you are going for. I'm not talking about semiwestern/eastern etc. semi is fine. I'm referring to the way you hold your semi.
I highly recommend you grip the racquet all the way down to the end of the buttcap and don't spread your fingers the way you are doing. The way you are holding it is more conducive to an old school neutral stance linear swing powered by the arm. You are choking up and your fingers are spread.



When I grab my racquet naturally with a SW grip and extend the wrist back, the end of the butt cap is even with the base of my heel pad. I also develop this linear brown-ish callus after not playing for a bit www.flickr.com/photos/38221599@N05/8425193187

what do you mean by "neutral stance linear swing?" I imagine it's an accurate description since you also say it's powered by the arm (and my arm does most of the swinging in the casual neutral stance), I just can't picture it with only those four words

Cheetah
01-28-2013, 08:37 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2ho3FRWm9Pw

TheLambsheadrep
01-28-2013, 08:47 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2ho3FRWm9Pw

I've bookmarked that before, great video
Real quick, this was from earlier in the thread:

Murray does have a SW forehand like Agassi and Blake, correct? Should the fact that his stroke is "an exception" discourage me from trying to learn from it? He would be a more modern example of what I could be doing, where Agassi has more of a classic stroke. Blake tends to lean toward Agassi with strokes I think, too. Any other good SW players that you think I should study based on my video?

TheLambsheadrep
01-28-2013, 08:55 PM
When I grab my racquet naturally with a SW grip and extend the wrist back, the end of the butt cap is even with the base of my heel pad. I also develop this linear brown-ish callus after not playing for a bit www.flickr.com/photos/38221599@N05/8425193187

what do you mean by "neutral stance linear swing?" I imagine it's an accurate description since you also say it's powered by the arm (and my arm does most of the swinging in the casual closed stance), I just can't picture it with only those four words

From the first paragraph, I see you examples and I can always look at more, but would you say should I be going from what I'm using to getting my pinky level with the bottom of the butt cap and make a fist, or maybe keep where my hand is but bring my fingers closer together to make a fist (the pointer finger is def spaced the farthest out, but I'm seeing that in the pics you posted, Nadal's being the most obvious)? With the way I'm holding the racquet now, the slope of the butt cap up to the rest of the grip fits so nice into my pad/palm, it was just a comfort thing that I've always used.

And can you comment on the second paragraph please

Cheetah
01-28-2013, 08:58 PM
I've bookmarked that before, great video
Real quick, this was from earlier in the thread:

Murray does have a SW forehand like Agassi and Blake, correct? Should the fact that his stroke is "an exception" discourage me from trying to learn from it? He would be a more modern example of what I could be doing, where Agassi has more of a classic stroke. Blake tends to lean toward Agassi with strokes I think, too. Any other good SW players that you think I should study based on my video?

i think agassi's grip is an eastern / sw hybrid.

hard to say who else. swings and grips are extensions of personalities.
tipsarevic has a simple easy to copy style and has all the modern elements.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-R3PJaev3AA
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=13N2TOH7Kwg

TheLambsheadrep
01-28-2013, 09:04 PM
OK, seeing the pinky level with the bottom of the butt cap in the vast majority of photos, even Agassi's.

So prob more than a pinky width up from the butt cap to flush with the butt cap. I bet that's what you were going to say Cheetah :P

TheLambsheadrep
01-28-2013, 09:22 PM
i think agassi's grip is an eastern / sw hybrid.

hard to say who else. swings and grips are extensions of personalities.
tipsarevic has a simple easy to copy style and has all the modern elements.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-R3PJaev3AA
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=13N2TOH7Kwg

Tipsy's stroke is similar to mine from that first video at least, even more so when I keep the back swing closer to me. Is he SW grip though, he's turning that contact face of the racquet pretty far back...

Is he modeling the Western backhand as well...? http://tennis.about.com/od/forehandbackhand/ss/bh2gripclosewt_3.htm
I was going to post another thread on this at some point, trying to get more info before I put it together

Cheetah
01-28-2013, 09:30 PM
Tipsy's stroke is similar to mine from that first video at least, even more so when I keep the back swing closer to me. Is he SW grip though, he's turning that contact face of the racquet pretty far back...

Is he modeling the Western backhand as well...? http://tennis.about.com/od/forehandbackhand/ss/bh2gripclosewt_3.htm
I was going to post another thread on this at some point, trying to get more info before I put it together

not sure of his grip actually and i don't know much about 2 hand backhands.

TheLambsheadrep
01-30-2013, 08:58 PM
Cheeta, I was only free to try out some of your (and other's) suggestions for like 15 min yesterday, but I was able to begin to feel how different everything will be (especially the lower grip placement). I knew I didn't have much time and wasn't hitting great full distance strokes with all the new steps in my head, so I decided to try some short court. The big take away of the night was this- I was able to hit controlled topspin in a short court scenario. Normally when I do short court, I just poke at the ball. A lot of slice forehands and some flat softies, but I am never able to hit a topspin forehand in the manageable way warming up short court style intends. Against a wall is never a tell-all compared to hitting with a person, but I was taking full swings and seeing that the ball wasn't hit too hard (which is the biggest problem for me with short court topspin forehands. I feel other players of my level hit easy, arching strokes with obvious topspin that could land in the middle of the box. If I could get it over with topspin and not have it look linear and land deep in the box, it was probably a mishit haha).

I'm hoping this increase of controlled, short distance topspin will carry over somehow to my full court game. Just the first thing to fall into place :-)

Cheetah
01-30-2013, 09:16 PM
cool. told ya so. that grip has more feel, more spin and more power because it helps you keep a loose wrist.

TheLambsheadrep
02-03-2013, 12:29 PM
New video - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VZ4PsNCTKnA&feature=youtu.be

My first 3 of my shots I see that the racquet face is perpendicular to the court at the end of the take back all the way through contact, which resulted in a double bend hit (like http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cnnKt_SeJ6s or http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lXWks8yvRJQ, minus the fact that his racquet starts the upward part of the take back closed). From other videos of me goofing with friends, the double bend seems to be how I normally hit. And when not trying to force “pet the dog” (like the first video), I guess I didn’t really do it at all. That’s probably why sometimes I would wind up for a kill shot and send it flying long, since the racquet face was never closed in the first place and any supination on top of that perpendicular racquet face position would open up the racquet face. The last 3 I had the racquet more parallel to the court during the same time frame described above, which resulted in a straight arm hit. I can see that the first 2 straight arm shots are reminiscent of my first video – my arm was moving at the same speed as my body, not being pulled by it. I believe this is because both incoming balls were around knee level, just like a lot were from the first video. The last one was different though, and I gave a signal to the camera to watch this shot specifically. As I was going through the different suggestions I’ve been given throughout that night, this was around the point I started to focus on swinging with the butt cap first to the ball. This shot felt different than all the others, and I remember how loose my arm felt right before contact (when I led with the butt cap) through contact.

For that last shot, I’d like to point out a few things I think I did to improve from the first video an what I still could improve on -
Improved: slightly more open stance (though not as good as other shots in the video), not forcing the racquet face to point behind me (kept at about 45 degrees), swinging at the ball with the butt cap, contact is made about as far out as possible
Can still improve: loading on outside leg (again, not as good as other shots in the video), starting the swing from the body (will give more ssc), maybe a more federer/nadal-esc shortened back swing (more of a 45 degree straight down drop instead of a circular motion)

Also, stroke 2 and 3 seem to me to be pretty similar, but the second shot would have sailed long. Can you tell me what you think the differences are that would have contributed to this are? I can see these:
-elbow is slightly more bent during the follow through on the 3rd stroke
-ball is lower at contact on the 3rd
-swing path is more linear on the 3rd

On a lot of pro’s bent arm swings I’m seeing that their elbows are still kept bent still after contact so their arms wrap around their body/neck really fast, where my elbow is extended as far from my chest as possible since my arm is almost straight out and pointing at the hitting wall. But then here’s Roddick www.youtube.com/watch?v=V-D32RwsD_w and it looks like he’s killing the ball, and his elbow and arm are more straight out like mine. Is this a swinging through vs. swinging up difference?

And what is Murray doing to get his arm to go from straight to bent right before contact, is he swinging literally straight up and over on the ball? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f-7ZZXUBrl8


BTW, in http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-R3PJaev3AA , do you think he’d hit with a straight arm if he didn’t supinate right after petting the dog and kept the racquet face parallel to the court through most of the stroke?

TheLambsheadrep
02-05-2013, 10:36 AM
Cheetah, I see you're on now haha

Cheetah
02-05-2013, 11:13 AM
New video - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VZ4PsNCTKnA&feature=youtu.be

Looks better. good job. weight transfer is better. contact point looks good now. I'd still move that grip down a touch but that's a big change so I don't expect you to change that anytime soon. follow through looks perfect. stance could be a touch more open on some shots but still looks better. good swing. Does the spin characteristics of the shots look any different than before? I'm guessing it probably does.

I think you have to work more on the takeback still. maybe a little more compact and get more ptd doing. that will make the shot better guaranteed. You have some lag now i can see. That's good. could be a touch more though.

Also, stroke 2 and 3 seem to me to be pretty similar, but the second shot would have sailed long. Can you tell me what you think the differences are that would have contributed to this are? I can see these:
-elbow is slightly more bent during the follow through on the 3rd stroke
-ball is lower at contact on the 3rd
-swing path is more linear on the 3rd

it looks like second stroke had a slightly better contact point. you were meeting it with some across action which gives more spin and margin. 3rd looked more linear and contact point was closer so it had more straight through on it towards the target so not enough room to get some natural spin on it like on the 2nd. also for the 2nd you were hitting while your body was rising from the push off which was good. the 3rd there wasn't much push so torso was going straight thru therefore less top.

On a lot of proís bent arm swings Iím seeing that their elbows are still kept bent still after contact so their arms wrap around their body/neck really fast, where my elbow is extended as far from my chest as possible since my arm is almost straight out and pointing at the hitting wall. But then hereís Roddick www.youtube.com/watch?v=V-D32RwsD_w and it looks like heís killing the ball, and his elbow and arm are more straight out like mine. Is this a swinging through vs. swinging up difference?

And what is Murray doing to get his arm to go from straight to bent right before contact, is he swinging literally straight up and over on the ball? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f-7ZZXUBrl8

I think this is because you don't have any PTD so your arm is going to move differently than those guys after the hit. look how roddick's racquet face is pointing to the ground.

murray leads the swing w/ there elbow. the elbow stays with the torso rotation while the racquet lags behind creating the bend. this is how it should be done.

TheLambsheadrep
02-05-2013, 11:38 AM
Thanks! I do think the grip creeps back up sometimes since that's how it's been for 10ish years, but I am trying to have my pinky placement no more than an additional pinky width up from the bottom of the grip. The spin looks different on my better shots, but there's not enough of them to see it like night and day.

I'm def going to make mental notes to get more ptd going, I never knew I held the racquet so open at the bottom of my take back (like from the tsonga vid I posted before http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_CrWFui1jW4)

And even though Roddick had full ptd in that video, I still think his follow through looked a lot like mine. Maybe his is a hitting through motion but then his western grip gives him more spin (and margin of error) compared to my SW

TheLambsheadrep
02-22-2013, 07:59 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YEU3NdXZhfM&feature=youtu.be
So here is myself and a friend hitting around for a bit. I realize from the video that I am good at making one correctional tip from people on this forum at a time, and then switching to another and totally forgetting to continue doing the last one haha. On one shot I am gripping the racquet lower and with more of a closed fist, the next I am leading the forward swing with the butt cap but the hand is back up, etc. But overall I know the video is a learning tool, and next time I can go out and build on what I have now.

So a few things I think I'm doing better:
-more swings leading with the butt cap. This seems to be the best piece of advice for me so far. I have captured a few shots in slow mo again where I think I see the most SSC, and I believe that it's because I'm leading with the butt cap really well (if there are shots I didn't slow mo that you think have better SCC, please let me know which ones they are)
-standing more open. I told you guys that's how I normally hit :P
-keeping the back swing shorter. I know it's not as short as some would like to see, but it's obviously better than the first video (again, it was that long because I was trying the whole "turn the racquet face far back" thing)

things to work on:
-keeping my hand lower on the grip. I think I was a little lax in this video compared to my second, and even though it didn't seem to negatively impact my shots, I know holding it lower will provide room for improvement. I think I need to get in the habit of adjusting the grip after every shot. If I'm not mistaken, some pros spin their racquet in their hands after almost every shot, so I may try to implement that and feel for where my pinky is every time.
-half to no PTD position, especially on higher balls. Fed and Nadal get their racquet almost parallel to the ground, and where that's not mandatory, it's a good visualization to get great PTD. I also think the flatter the racquet gets to the ground, the more the wrist is allowed to deviate first and then extend, which seems to be how Fed hits. Again, even though it didn't seem to hinder most of my shots, I know it will lead to improvement. It will also make the next note more evident.
-Not as much visible whip with SSC as possible. I think this ties in with the PTD note. I've been thinking that if I don't bring the racquet most of the way behind me (around 90 degrees from the side fence) and have it more like 60-70 degrees back, there will be more whipping of the racquet head behind me (so now it's whipped to around 90 degrees, not just brought back to 90 degrees) on the forward swing and therefore more SSC. I think Fed does this more than Nadal, who seems to bring the racquet back more. In the same videos that I'm making Fed and Nadal's SSC observations in, I'm seeing that they don't always have a huge whip and sometimes it seems like the wrist is locked through the stroke, so I think it's safe to say that it's hard to get it perfectly all the time.

A few other things:
-I'm seeing some double bend shots again, and I think from this view it's obvious that a big determining factor is distance from the ball. There are def some biomechanical differences as well (pronation vs supination of the forearm during the forward swing), but they are not voluntary, and I'd go as far as to say distance is the biggest determining factor. I also think SSC is not as visually obvious (at full speed or slow mo) when hitting with a double bend. Shots at 0:13, 1:09, 1:12, 1:53, and 4:05 are more double bend than straight arm if not full on double bend. I've put together a clip of Nadal and Tipsarevic hitting split screen forehands so I could see the biomechanical difference(s), but it is hard to see anything major so I will prob upload that soon, too.
-Cheetah, what did you think about what I was saying about the Wegner video from the other thread? Mainly about this - "I think using an open stance and pushing off your outside foot will create movement/momentum going to your left (for R handers) and will allow the racquet to use that movement/momentum to go across the body faster. There should still be enough forward movement/momentum to have your body going forward and into the court, though. Maybe the next time I'm hitting I will try a few shots where I'm consciously trying to push off at a 45 degree angle forward and to the left and see what happens. From there you can modify it - maybe push off at 60 degrees (going more laterally) and see if arm acceleration increases going across the body instead of out from the body and, consequently, if spin (maybe side spin) increases."
-are my follow throughs looking a little too extended over my left shoulder?

Cheetah
02-22-2013, 09:20 PM
well... it's a step in the right direction.
just remember it's going to take time.

there were some good shots in there and the ball has a lot of action. you're pretty good and you can see all the hours logged.

1) you need to start getting your legs involved. Currently your using your arms too much. (like most ppl) Your leg work is too casual and I'd say not involved in the majority of the time and too much flat foot time. You have to literally change your mentality and start thinking of a stroke as hitting the ball with the body. You don't have to load and push off like a madman or nadal but the stroke has to start from the ground up. Load and push first even if it's a tiny amount. Even in the super casual practice strokes of Fed he is using his legs. It's subtle but they are involved. Once you get the legs involved correctly then many good things are going to happen in the overall stroke and not just power.

2) I feel your hitting structure falls apart too soon. We've been through all that and it's not as easy to see in fed and nadal because they are the masters and have tons of ssc etc going on in around their hitting structure but if you look at 'lesser' players it's easier to see.

Look at this frame from your vid. See your racquet position?
http://img842.imageshack.us/img842/1566/39110096.png

That sucks. haha. :p. You don't really want to see that kind of thing. This means you are not using isr and/or some other flaws and your structure breaks down and you're not coming through the ball in the best way. Look at GregG's thread. He used to have that look too but he's fixed it.
You want to be at this position:
https://encrypted-tbn3.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcTB7Wv830WW0OwNRg5VrZbyn3n60-VxM4qEHPd7VaL_eKY9y0XU

https://encrypted-tbn2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQ24-YdRVM_CjkECBKUXaH0FXYa_YGw4Wutz_hivh3GfadeR752
see the difference?

Look at this guy. Not a pro but you can see him holding that structure through the hit. He's swinging with his body. When that happens you get a nice arc look to the swing path.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vWuD9-Fcrxc&feature=endscreen&NR=1&t=14s

You can see this nice 'arc' in all the pros. They set up that structure and then they 'throw' or 'rotate' that structure through the ball using their body.
Once you get that idea baked in your muscle mem then naturally you will loosen it up and you'll get more ssc and all that. But still all that ssc and pronation and deviation and flair still happens in and around the hitting structure. and yes their are exceptions and circumstances etc etc.
You might want to try to pull the butt cap past the ball before the hit. This give a lot of leverage.

But other than that your swing looks a little better. good job.

TheLambsheadrep
02-23-2013, 07:06 AM
I see what you’re saying, but that’s not the follow through position for every shot so the thing for me to work on is consistency. Pausing at 1:20, 1:24 (not a great shot, but still the racquet position you were referring to), 1:34, and 1:41 shows a string of the follow throughs you refer to, and most of the slow mo’s have it, too. I would say the one you showed was kind of an outlier actually, but the point is that it’s there and shouldn’t be. I think, when it is there, is has to do with lack of PTD and that longer follow through I was doing.

Like I noted before, I am a little surprised to see my follow through like that. The first two videos I posted had me catching the racquet over my shoulder for the most part, which kept it nice and compact. In this vid my arm is really far out there on some shots and I’m not doing a whole lot with my left arm to catch the racquet. For now, I will make a mental note and relate this to the increased effort compared to the first video. With that said, the fact that the footwork got better but the follow through got worse is a little disappointing…

I do see that I need more body in the shot. There is def more use and rotation in this third video than the others, and even though this was casual hitting it wouldn’t be 100% true to say that it keeps getting better the more “real” I play. Increase of body in my shots is something I def need to further implement. In terms of legs though, I see some good outside loading, but it’s never fully utilized. I think only my last three shots have both feet in the air at the same time (we only played 1.5 real game before she got called to go) - I’m either rotating around my left leg and the right leg rises or I push off the right and the left rises to readjust. Would a good gauge for leg use be if both came off the ground? I’m not saying I need to jump a foot in the air, but would enough spring being used result in both feet in the air? I think that is what determines good/bad leg use for the serve, so it would make sense if it applied to at least the forehand. This concept is found in the rotation vid you posted

Cheetah
02-23-2013, 10:16 AM
I see what you’re saying, but that’s not the follow through position for every shot so the thing for me to work on is consistency. Pausing at 1:20, 1:24 (not a great shot, but still the racquet position you were referring to), 1:34, and 1:41 shows a string of the follow throughs you refer to, and most of the slow mo’s have it, too.


Yes. I see. I wrote that as I was falling asleep so I missed those.

Like I noted before, I am a little surprised to see my follow through like that. The first two videos I posted had me catching the racquet over my shoulder for the most part, which kept it nice and compact. In this vid my arm is really far out there on some shots and I’m not doing a whole lot with my left arm to catch the racquet. For now, I will make a mental note and relate this to the increased effort compared to the first video.

Yup. No worries. I'm just trying to put it out there for you so that you're more aware of it.

Would a good gauge for leg use be if both came off the ground? I’m not saying I need to jump a foot in the air, but would enough spring being used result in both feet in the air? I think that is what determines good/bad leg use for the serve, so it would make sense if it applied to at least the forehand.

No. i don't think so. No need to come off the ground. You are loading some times but mostly what I'm referring to is your footwork between strokes, not in the stroke itself so much.
Look at this sequence: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YEU3NdXZhfM&feature=youtu.be&t=2m36s

You're just mosie-ing along, la de da, ho humming it, knees locked, flat footed, walking causualy over to the next stroke. haha. When you do that then when it comes time to execute the stroke it takes more energy to get going and load and go through proper motions because basically you've stopped. the body is in laze mode. You have to keep moving and be springy. The feet and body are part of the stroke. Basically you're just training your legs to be lazy. It can still be casual but..hmm.... lemme see if I can find an example.

here's fed in casual mode. but look at his feet and also the guy he's hitting with. split steps, knees bent, moving http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wTjBXVQyiwg&t=1m43s

novac http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-WrTWNm-hN0

TheLambsheadrep
02-23-2013, 11:48 AM
I think part of the reason for some (in my opinion) ugly looking follow throughs was a lack of ISR. Would an example of good IRS coupled with good forearm pronation be at 1:12 (plus most of the ending slow mo shots from my first video and the last shot of my second posted video)?

Btw, reading Greg G's forehand thread, a lot of similarities in our developments and critiques

Cheetah
02-23-2013, 01:33 PM
yea that shot at 1:12 looked good. had a nice pop on it too.

Greg G
02-24-2013, 04:44 AM
Looking good Lambsheadrep! Work on keeping your balance, which is related to getting there early. It's my issue as well :)

TheLambsheadrep
02-24-2013, 06:01 PM
yea that shot at 1:12 looked good. had a nice pop on it too.

Thanks. I'm prob gonna record again this week, and the things I want to really focus on are holding the grip lower, more PTD (with that 60-70 degree back swing position), leading with the butt cap, and split stepping between shots (just for you Cheetah :P ).

For lowering the grip, do you think what I said before - spinning the racquet (just one half turn) between shots - is a good option for recreating the feel every time?

Cheetah
02-24-2013, 06:26 PM
Thanks. I'm prob gonna record again this week, and the things I want to really focus on are holding the grip lower, more PTD (with that 60-70 degree back swing position), leading with the butt cap, and split stepping between shots (just for you Cheetah :P ).

For lowering the grip, do you think what I said before - spinning the racquet (just one half turn) between shots - is a good option for recreating the feel every time?

I'm not sure about that. I think that's personal preference. I spin between shots but i don't give it any thought. i just do it to keep the hands loose and to keep the tension out of my hands and arms. I also don't hold the racquet by the grip when i'm walking back to the service line or between points for the same reason (grabbing by the throat). i learned that trick from boris becker years back.

I see a lot of ppl here talking about spinning the racquet but i ignore those convos so i don't know what they are saying regarding the spinning.

I'm guessing the grip change will take about 3 weeks. If you stick w/ it for 3 weeks you won't go back to your previous grip.. you'll see.

TheLambsheadrep
03-16-2013, 11:24 AM
Hey Cheetah, no recent vids but a question or two.

I just posted a thread about the two most common ways to hold the racquet - "pistol" and "hammer" - and in it I say that I've been trying out the hammer a little bit recently and thought I felt my wrist being more loose. What do you think about this?

Also, I've been trying to make the PTD position a habit and think I am making progress. After trying the hammer grip, I felt the racquet just DROP at the end of my back swing right before any forward swing. I mean, it was the equivalent of falling through a trap door, but for my wrist. I thought it was weird at first, and then realized it's probably what a completely loose wrist feels like. Without the support given by the extended index finger of the pistol grip, is the SSC more easily achieved?

If I can prevent any arm/wrist interference from just letting the racquet drop down (like described above), the arm naturally supinates big time. This opens up the racquet when the PTD position should be happening such that the racquet face is no longer near parallel with the ground. Is that too much supination, should there still be some control over how the arm moves down so gravity doesn't take all the way over? Would a video help show what I mean?

Cheetah
03-16-2013, 12:47 PM
Hey Cheetah, no recent vids but a question or two.

I just posted a thread about the two most common ways to hold the racquet - "pistol" and "hammer" - and in it I say that I've been trying out the hammer a little bit recently and thought I felt my wrist being more loose. What do you think about this?

Also, I've been trying to make the PTD position a habit and think I am making progress. After trying the hammer grip, I felt the racquet just DROP at the end of my back swing right before any forward swing. I mean, it was the equivalent of falling through a trap door, but for my wrist. I thought it was weird at first, and then realized it's probably what a completely loose wrist feels like. Without the support given by the extended index finger of the pistol grip, is the SSC more easily achieved?

If I can prevent any arm/wrist interference from just letting the racquet drop down (like described above), the arm naturally supinates big time. This opens up the racquet when the PTD position should be happening such that the racquet face is no longer near parallel with the ground. Is that too much supination, should there still be some control over how the arm moves down so gravity doesn't take all the way over? Would a video help show what I mean?

Yes post a quick video if you could so I don't misinterpret. Or even a video of someone else doing something similar that you are referring to if possible.

TheLambsheadrep
03-30-2013, 06:55 PM
Yes post a quick video if you could so I don't misinterpret. Or even a video of someone else doing something similar that you are referring to if possible.

Sorry it took so long, got of topic with the other thread. Here's a vid of me slowing the swing down to show the wrist drop. Since I was altering the swing speed, I wasn't 100% consistent, but the general idea is shown every time. The first one is the best i think, there was so much natural motion from the drop that i hit the back of my calf haha. With a full speed swing, the racquet head doesn't drop down as much, but still has the big supination. Btw, this was using Nadal/Novak's hammer grip.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/38221599@N05/8604098815

and this is the vid of nadal ive been watching lately, he gets the racquet so far behind his back it's silly.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XJ7fWm1gPtY

Cheetah
03-30-2013, 07:37 PM
Nope.
one day you're going to look at that vid and say 'omg. wth was i thinking??'

lol.. been there done that. but sorry. you're not getting it yet. i know exactly what you're going through.

If I were you I would forget what you're doing right there and don't shadow that anymore. It's not correct so no need to reinforce it.

and ... ok.. that grip.... u are definitely approaching hammer grip there. something's a little weird with it. not sure yet. I'd have to see a clear pic of it.

I'll grab some screenshots and show you why what you are doing in that vid is wrong... 30 mins

while i do that answer this...
to do what you are trying to do (get ssc etc etc) is the same as if you were holding a piece of rope the length of a tennis racquet with a tennis ball connected at the end of the string. now lets say you are holding the rope and a tennis ball is heading towards you over the net and you have to hit the oncoming tennis ball with the ball that is connected to the 27inch rope you are holding. you have to whip the ball around on the rope and hit the oncoming ball. get it?

if you were doing that do you think your swing and rope path would like the swing and racquet path in that vid you just posted?

TheLambsheadrep
03-30-2013, 07:59 PM
Cheetah, I wasn't interested in the SSC with this. All I was thinking of was letting the wrist drop, it was just something I noticed without the support of the extended index finger. Don't worry about analyzing it too much, I just wanted to point out the difference I felt in a quick video

TheLambsheadrep
03-30-2013, 08:01 PM
Nope.
and ... ok.. that grip.... u are definitely approaching hammer grip there. something's a little weird with it. not sure yet. I'd have to see a clear pic of it.

It may be that I wasn't holding the grip as low as a could have/should have. Again, I was just trying to get a quick video example of the motion before my hitting session began today

TheLambsheadrep
03-30-2013, 08:15 PM
If I were you I would forget what you're doing right there and don't shadow that anymore. It's not correct so no need to reinforce it

OK, simple enough. I will get a vid up soon of my most recent strokes to prove that what you're telling me is sinking in haha.

About the Nadal video for a sec - between that video and most of Fed's videos, I'm seeing Nadal's racquet whip further behind his back at the beginning of his forward swing, I'd pretty much say much further. Would you say it's because Nadal's elbow also goes further behind his back then Fed's does? That's what I'm thinking...

Cheetah
03-30-2013, 08:15 PM
oh. ok
,......

Cheetah
03-30-2013, 08:20 PM
OK, simple enough. I will get a vid up soon of my most recent strokes to prove that what you're telling me is sinking in haha.

About the Nadal video for a sec - between that video and most of Fed's videos, I'm seeing Nadal's racquet whip further behind his back at the beginning of his forward swing, I'd pretty much say much further. Would you say it's because Nadal's elbow also goes further behind his back then Fed's does? That's what I'm thinking...

I hope you're not swinging like u were in that last vid. that would be pretty messed up.

Regarding Nadal, Yea i guess. He has a more violent motion.

TheLambsheadrep
03-30-2013, 08:35 PM
I hope you're not swinging like u were in that last vid. that would be pretty messed up.

Regarding Nadal, Yea i guess. He has a more violent motion.

There prob is some wrist drop (a result of a loose wrist), but not to the level that was in the video. For the video, to make sure there was enough time to see what I was talking about, I delayed the forward swing. That may have been what I was doing all along and made me think there was a big supination. Well, ya there'd be, if you don't swing forward to get to the natural pronation, there's nothing to balance out the supination haha. Idk, I thought I had picked up on something, but it doesn't occur in a real play setting.

I will get video of my regular fh pistol grip strokes, me trying some fh hammer grip strokes, and the western forehand I can hit with a "standard" hammer grip (knuckles all on one bevel) strokes up soon.

Cheetah
03-30-2013, 09:48 PM
if you don't swing forward to get to the natural pronation...

correct.
.....

TomT
03-30-2013, 10:12 PM
... to do what you are trying to do (get ssc etc etc) is the same as if you were holding a piece of rope the length of a tennis racquet with a tennis ball connected at the end of the string. now lets say you are holding the rope and a tennis ball is heading towards you over the net and you have to hit the oncoming tennis ball with the ball that is connected to the 27inch rope you are holding. you have to whip the ball around on the rope and hit the oncoming ball. get it?
... I was casually perusing the threads here and happened on this. I think it just might help me to improve my forehand. After shadow swinging using this visualization, I'm encouraged enough to spend some time tomorrow experimenting with it on court (or at least at the wall if I can't get a hitting partner). One of my problems, at least I think it's a problem, has been in optimizing my arm extension regarding normal forehand groundstroke hitting. I'll let you know if your suggestion/visualization helps facilitate that.

@TheLambsheadrep,
Nice thread. Enjoying your vids, and comments from you, Cheetah, et al. You are talented. Best of luck with your continued improvement.