View Full Version : Question for coaches or open level players:

lendl lives
02-26-2004, 11:34 AM
My raquet stringer was explaining to me some differences in technique between early 90's players and todays. He shared that the face of the raquet is much more closed today on both sides and the swing path is more through the ball. For example on the backhand an extreme easter grip would be used. The contact point actually has the face point downward. He explained that the angle of the bounce causes the ball to clear the net. I haven't tried this yet but looked at some tape of davenport I had handy last night and it looks like she's doing this on the back hand. The whole discussion started becuase I was sharing that I couldn't keep the ball in with my babolat pure drive plus. He is a 6.0 player. Any comments on this?

Bungalo Bill
02-26-2004, 03:39 PM
He is correct in a way. But he needs to clarify it for you better. What I think he means is more and more players are hitting the ball off the rise.

It is a bit of physics we are talking about here. This law of physics works much like the half volley. When you half volley the racquet face is some what closed.

After the ball bounces, a closed racquet face will cause the ball to bounce up off the strings. It takes a little practice to find out the angle your need to have to be consistent with this shot. Start out closed and is that didnt work open it a tad. But the angle of the racquet face will be a bit closed.

The same is true for hitting off the rise, which more and more players are beginning to learn.

02-26-2004, 11:35 PM
The other day I demo'd a racquet and found that to hit well with it I had to hit the way I was taught 30-odd years ago. In addition to the racquet face being more closed, I was aware of pointing the racquet where I wanted to hit the ball, standing square and stepping into the shot with my front foot. These days, I hit with a more open face, stand 3/4 to the net and push off my back leg - for the forehand. My one handed backhand is pretty much the same ( I think, but I hadn't realised I'd changed styles on the forehand so maybe I'm just not aware of the changes).

Sorry - saw too late that you asked for replies only from coaches and open level players (don't know what the equivalent is here and if I qualify), but maybe one of your preferred will comment on my observations.

Mahboob Khan
02-27-2004, 09:12 AM
Modern Forehand with semi-westrn grip:

In the backswing the racket is closed; at chest height point of contact the racket is vertical; in follow-through racket closes again. Obviously, if the contact is lower than your waist then the racket will be partially close at contact. That's why with full western FH grip the ideal contact point is between your chest and mouth and more in front. Those players who use western grip but with low backswing and low point of contact frame the ball most of the time! The swing pattern is directly tied to the type of grip you are using.

lendl lives
02-27-2004, 10:33 AM
some context: we started talking about 'todays' technique becuase I was having trouble keeping the ball in with the babolate pure drive +. He explained that manufacturers are developing sticks to match changes in techniqe visavi late 80's early 90's and to really take advantage of a club like this my technique would have to be updated in the manner disscussed in my initial post. He points out that sampras' raquet for example is no longer suited for todays game and technique. Much of the discussion was about wether or not the older guys like lendl (in his prime) would stand a chance against a-rod and his cohorts. I hope this makes sense. Still haven't got to the court due to the poor weather out here in California. (another thing I should point out was that he shared I had strung the club initially way too low. (56lbs, fiber tour...next job is a 64) Also, now that I think about it the new aero-tour raquet by babolat is designed areo-dynamically in a manner that fits his explination.