Balls heading straight to you

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by sureshs, Jan 31, 2013.

  1. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    And slightly to the backhand.

    Give me some tips on those.

    I have tried quick sideways turn, backing up, and running around the BH. Tried blocking and slicing.

    I would like more analysis.
     
    #1
  2. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Wide stance, maybe 30" wide prep position.
    Slightly to backhand side, you hit backhand out in front, and if it's a fast mover, you do not move your feet. You slice towards your right, nice and early, if you're right handed.
    Ready position of conti grip and racket slightly pointed towards the side you need to protect...in my case, my backhand side for a quicker ready position.
    If the ball comes inside your body, but the forehand side, same thing, use your backhand volley, don't move your feet unless you have time, try, but it's not necessary to turn your shoulders.
    You will NOT hit a deep penetrating volley of a body shot. Your best volley is a low short angle, you moving to that side after you volley hopefully shorter than the opponent's service line.
     
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  3. Hi I'm Ray

    Hi I'm Ray Hall of Fame

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    You should have enough time to move over and hit a forehand on most of those shots. If you are slow or have bad footwork and try to take it on the backhand side you are likely going to hit a jammed/cramped backhand.
     
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  4. TheCheese

    TheCheese Professional

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    Sureshs, do you have any footage of you playing?
     
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  5. Swerve

    Swerve New User

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    I have the same problem. What I do is I usually take a step back and volley, but I get yelled at by my coach, who tells me I should step into the ball and maneuver my BH volley to get to that shot. Still a struggle for me, maybe it just takes time.
     
    #5
  6. Cheetah

    Cheetah Hall of Fame

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    split step. wide stance. reverse fh if all else fails.
     
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  7. rkelley

    rkelley Hall of Fame

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    Kind of depends on several factors I'd say. Generally I'd do as you said, run around the bh and go for the fh - inside out if I want safe or to pick on his bh, dtl if I have time and want to be more aggressive (especially if it's short).

    Are you stationary or were you moving right before split stepping? I've found that if I was moving in a particular direction before the split step it's easiest to continue in that direction. I will run around a fh and to hit the bh if the footwork feels better.

    How fast is it coming? If it's ripped at you then you have to whip your feet around in basically one motion and take it as a bh. It's a bit harder with the 1hbh I'd say - w a 2hbh I can punch it back and get something on it if it as some pace coming at me.

    Slicing may be an option.
     
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  8. Vertiz

    Vertiz Rookie

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    Assuming these balls are relatively fast and you are getting jammed at the baseline, the only thing you can really do is do a hop step into your usual position and block the ball with an abbreviated swing. Happens to everyone. 3:40 where Kohl gets a tough return he does this exactly, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cPvJ0WJ_4f8
     
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  9. ATP100

    ATP100 Professional

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    You are probably doing what most rec. players do, hit your shot, and watch
    (stand still).
     
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  10. Hi I'm Ray

    Hi I'm Ray Hall of Fame

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    Can you clarify what you mean?
     
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  11. USS Tang

    USS Tang Rookie

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    I agree with LeeD with one exception peculiar to my style of play. I'm right-handed. If I'm at the net and the ball comes hard at me and slightly to my right side, say at the hip, I put my left hand on top of my right hand and slide the racket horizontally from right to left across my body at waist level, putting a little bit of punch on the ball in addition to the natural sidespin that is imparted. Keeping just the right hand on the handle does not give me the flexibility to move the racket head in the very little time I have to react.
     
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  12. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    That was to his forehand and very deep. He half volleys and I would do the same.

    The issue I have is with balls that come a little shorter but faster and higher.
     
    #12
  13. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    So you are saying slice is the only reliable shot? I do that often, and hit a slice which has side spin and goes towards the right.

    Is a BH drive or top spin a no no?
     
    #13
  14. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    On the 1 handed backhand, the block from that jammed position is not very reliable. That is the problem. How to make it reliable?
     
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  15. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    The balls I am talking about have bounced, so it is not a volley.
     
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  16. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Yeah another disadvantage of the 1 hander not usually publicized. That is what I am experiencing.
     
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  17. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

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    It is easier to fight off the shoe cleaner screamers with the 2 hander for sure.
     
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  18. boramiNYC

    boramiNYC Hall of Fame

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    for an elegant solution try this footwork. pivot on the right foot and push off strong with your left foot to turn left. if your arm was ready and in front of you as you turn you are ready to hit.
     
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  19. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Not shoe cleaners - for those I use a 2 hander by reflex. These are shorter and higher bouncing, but a little faster to be able to move back in time.
     
    #19
  20. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    My basic problem (for a non-slice approach) is: where is the room for the swing? It seems as if the racket has to swing back and forth through my body to hit this shot. At least for now, such technology does not exist.
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2013
    #20
  21. Nellie

    Nellie Hall of Fame

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    You are in a pretty defensive situation, so I would be looking to return deep and cross court to continue the point. I would hit this shot like a half-volley. Essentially, I rotate at the shoulders (keeping the feet still) to line up the head of the racquet with the height of the ball but with no take back of the racquet. I am often leaning sideways to create some space from the ball. The ball has a lot of momentum, so I just I try to punch through (or even with add a slight upward motion for some type spin/lift). If this happens when I am coming forward, I may slice.
     
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  22. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Guess you're talking NML or baseline shots, NOT volleys, since in volleying position, you have no time to move feet if the opponent hits one hard at you.
    WHY try to hit topspin or flat? Opponent has the upper hand, so why don't you just try to nuetralized the point with a wide slow slice?
    If the ball has bounced, you HAVE plenty of time to move your feet and pivot your body sideways, making the backswing for you.
     
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  23. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Do you do the backhand "punch" with a conti or Eastern BH grip? The latter (my usual BH grip) causes errors in this situation as the block needs to be quite precise as it is hit with little swing.
     
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  24. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Use your volley grip to shorthop or block from NML back to the baseline.
    On forehand, you can use your normal forehand grip with a high swingpath to impart some topspin.
    Ebackhand is sometimes hard, as you need to take the ball out in front, and most shorthop balls are hard to judge.
     
    #24
  25. boramiNYC

    boramiNYC Hall of Fame

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    as your 1hbh improve, you'll find that you can hit without backswing from the ready position by simply changing grip and turning the whole body for the closed stance. a little shortened but plenty useful for defensive or looping shot.
     
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  26. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    This "blocking" shot is not hit with authority or heavy topspin.
    It's a BLOCK, like a half volley only shorter swung.
    To reset the point, not force the point in your favor.
     
    #26
  27. boramiNYC

    boramiNYC Hall of Fame

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    I'd say it's way more than block. about 75% of full stroke. using the wrist well in 1hbh will help in this regard.
     
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  28. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    You can stoke it you can get out of the way.
    Even at the Aussie, there are plenty of situations where all the players could not get out of the way, and purely blocked the ball back....or attempted to.
     
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  29. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    You can stroke it if you can...
    Using a anatomical keyboard, so can't type accurately.
     
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  30. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Correct. Blocking does not cut it, even at the 4.0 level.
     
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  31. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Blocking cuts it, as seen at the Aussie.
    Anything is better than losing the point on that stroke.
     
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  32. Relinquis

    Relinquis Hall of Fame

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    low slice is a good shot. if you have time to worry about grip changes than you should have had enough time to rotate your shoulders and adjust your weight balance/pivot to hit a solid block or flat ball (single handed backhand).
     
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  33. THE FIGHTER

    THE FIGHTER Hall of Fame

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    both ohbh and thbh, if you aren't quick enough to properly set up, or you are just too jammed up, use the jumping backhand. it puts space between your upper body and the ball. unless of course the ball is too low, like below the upper thigh.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7mbAU81fWac
    -the Marat
     
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  34. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    I do have a "jumping" one hander with the left (back) foot up but sometimes these balls jump high on me too fast
     
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  35. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Now we're talking high balls?
    OlivierRochus, Bagdatis, Ferrer, Cibulkova, all hit 2hbh high returns of serve.
     
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  36. Vertiz

    Vertiz Rookie

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    Ah okay I kind of see what you guys mean now. I play with a onehander myself and what I'm picturing is a fast/penetrating shot is coming right at you, catching you out of position. It lands very close to the baseline and you don't have time to setup for a driving shot. It doesn't happen too often to me personally and I think you can minimize the amount this happens by having good court position always, a well timed split step, fast footwork, and good balance. The only time I ever get jammed is when I'm on or inside the baseline a little bit. When this happens I do that same hop step into my striking position, get very low (important), make sure my weight is neutral (not leaning back or into the ball like you normally should), and "guide" the ball back. Emphasize the brushing, I look at it as scooping the ball off the rise. It will be a loopy shot usually with decent spin but not much pace. If you can get this reply back deep (takes practice and good timing), your opponent will still have to come up with a big finishing shot to take you out of the point. On the other hand, you could always try to block it but as you say it's unreliable. Hope I make sense haha :)
     
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2013
    #36
  37. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    "make it reliable"....
    Block it 3' above the net, to the backand side of your opponent. Go for some depth, but don't aim for the baseline. Just into NML is the best you can replicate over and over.
     
    #37
  38. wanda

    wanda New User

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    Same thing I had problems with a while ago.
    I was told I was quick but not using my speed effectively.
    The thing I did was first make sure I always split step and be decisive in whether I would take a backhand or forehand. Then the unit turn and make sure I moved my body away from the ball. For some reason moving my body away seemed harder than running towards the ball. Also I found that stepping back positioning myself further behind the baseline even just a few feet gave me vital more time to react.
     
    #38
  39. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Did you do this as a response to the shot or in general?
     
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  40. Rui

    Rui Semi-Pro

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    Yeah, I don't really understand standing on or just behind the baseline as a base position. If the ball is hit deep, you must move back or hit a backcourt half-volley. It offers nothing that can't be obtained by simply moving forward to intercept the ball.

    For the shots directed at your left shoulder (for righties): if they're slow, hit 'em as FHs. Otherwise, stand back (above) and move. Some players don't move to balls hit right to them. I would suggest 3-4 small adjustment steps before the last one.
     
    #40
  41. wanda

    wanda New User

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    A bit of both really. If the ball is coming fast and deep I find it is easier to position a few feet behind the baseline. It's easier to move forward when there's a short ball than to back up. I used to think that hugging the baseline was the best thing to do as most coaches and comentators I've heard say to try to play close to the baseline. It depends what's happening at the other end of the court though. Now i hardly ever get jammed at the baseline.
     
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