Being A Pusher

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by etea, Aug 2, 2007.

  1. etea

    etea New User

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    I would like to know how i can improve my skills as a pusher, please tell me what i should practice on and things to watch out for (S&V). Thanks a bunch!
     
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  2. K-LEG

    K-LEG Rookie

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    PUSHER ALERT! I think you should stop playing tennis.
     
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  3. etea

    etea New User

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    i think you should go in your corner and cry about it.
     
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  4. mona999

    mona999 Banned

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    hehe.

    i would say patience is the biggest thing.

    also, one thing my coach said that really stuck was that when you hit a really good shot, or sequence of shots, you are not finished. The hard part is to be able to make these shots Again, and Again (in the same point) until the other person finally cannot get it back. So don't be satisified with one awesome shot/play, be satisfied when you can do it repeatedly! If you make some great shots, Expect to get it back and do it over again.

    ok!?
     
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  5. dave333

    dave333 Hall of Fame

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    Being a pusher is all about consistency and never going for too much.

    During a basic rally, just push the ball deep with plenty of net clearance every time.

    When someone serves and volleys, lob.

    When someone hits a good shot, lob or just hit a good recovery shot and get back to the middle.

    When you need to hit an approach shot, slice the ball so it will be low.

    I'm still thinking....
     
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  6. kevhen

    kevhen Hall of Fame

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    Pusher skills needed: physically fitness, mental and physical stamina to run down all balls. Ability to hit balls back over the net with backspin or topspin or no spin or even sidespin, placement is not so important, just get the ball back over. As you become a better pusher, you will place the ball better (deep and short angle), add more spin (top and back), and will start picking on your opponent's weaker side. You don't have to hit winners to win in tennis just be very consistent.
     
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  7. Nuke

    Nuke Hall of Fame

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    That's a good tactic for all players. The difference is pushers lob when they don't need to.

    That's a good tactic for all players. Do pushers ever "need to hit an approach shot"?
     
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  8. Steady Eddy

    Steady Eddy Hall of Fame

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    I was wondering that too. But if your opponent hits a short ball, what are you going to do with it? This is a time where the pusher tactic of running back to the baseline is problematic; if you let him make you run up and back each point, you'll tire.

    If the pusher can play the net, he's not a real pusher. I see a pusher more hitting a drop shot off the short ball, one way to end a point and still be a pusher.

    One thing to think about. What if you play another pusher? The points become very long and the winner will be whoever is in the best shape. Defensive players like Borg and Nadal have been very fit. Do you have that going for you?
     
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  9. VS_Power

    VS_Power Rookie

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    be fit, be fast, read your opponents, and learn control! always go for the high percentage shot, but make sure to make your opponent run too!!! master the lob... very important!

    oh yes and probably the most difficult part of being a pusher is getting drop shotted then lobbed. make sure your overheads are solid.
     
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  10. sliceworks76

    sliceworks76 New User

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    I'd actually work on passing shots and your net play. It sounds like that's the opposite thing that "pushers" should do, but converting from a baseline game to a more all-around player will really help. The first key is obviously being consistent, but if you hit a wall, major improvements will come from just having adequate approach shots, volleys, and passing shots. Lobs are great, but sometimes you have to hit a low ball at a player's feet so you don't get predictable.
     
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  11. raiden031

    raiden031 Legend

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    If you want to be a solid pusher, you may want to make sure you don't follow-through on your strokes. A nice abbreviated "push" stroke will help you keep the ball in play.
     
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  12. wyutani

    wyutani Hall of Fame

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    I think a great pusher requires great stamina and lots of slicing and dicing.
     
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  13. The Gorilla

    The Gorilla Banned

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    the opposite
     
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  14. wyutani

    wyutani Hall of Fame

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    yeah, listen to the gorilla.
     
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  15. raiden031

    raiden031 Legend

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    All the pushers that can beat me do so with abbreviated push strokes. People who follow-through (like myself) might have more potential to become advanced players, but will hits lots of UEs while developing.
     
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  16. ChocolatePie

    ChocolatePie Semi-Pro

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    There's a pusher on our team and he's really good. He hits harder than most pushers and if he comes to net, it's not possible to have him make an unforced error.

    A net game is good for pushers in my opinion.
     
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  17. QuietDaze

    QuietDaze Rookie

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    But isn't having a net game not very pusherlike? I'll have to look up the definition of a pusher. I thought they were pretty passive players who just wants to get the ball back in play with very few unforced errors.
     
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  18. LuckyR

    LuckyR Legend

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    I'd work on getting a great deal of topspin on your groundies, that will allow you to add quite a bit of arch to your shots and all beginners and many intermediates will crumble beneath you if you can develop that shot.

    As to S&Vers, you will either need a great lob (see above) or a great pass. Of course if you develop a great pass you will be crossing over into counterpuncher territory.

    Bring the hurt.
     
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  19. Tennis_Monk

    Tennis_Monk Hall of Fame

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    Let us make this easy. Tell us what skills you have and we can tell you if you need any more. Who knows? you may already be 4.0. Generally Pushers cap around 4.0/4.5.
     
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  20. GuyClinch

    GuyClinch Hall of Fame

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    I do agree - if you want to be a better pusher you need a net game. At even the 3.5 level I find people with the puff serves. I don't think running backwards is a good tatic for a pusher to use against that.. You can hit a drop shot or an approach though..

    Also your net game will counter the "pusher" strategy of trying to get you to the net..

    pete
     
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  21. Hot Sauce

    Hot Sauce Hall of Fame

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    The main thing pushers have is consistency.. something I wish I had more of.
     
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  22. Green Tea

    Green Tea New User

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    actually i think being a pusher is very good lol I think that everyone has to be a good pusher *at first* and only then can he begin to improve on everything else...
    when i just started playing my very first coach didnt emphasize the need for consistency and I played quite well actually but there were many points which i would just throw away.

    Now, my current coach has emphasized consistency and now i not only have very good groundstrokes for consistency but I can play aggressive shots too. In order to begin to play aggressively you have to first have the consistency and therefore pusher. If on a particular day I was playing badly, my coach would make me do the spanish drill, a drill i dread a LOT...

    anyways back to the topic, to be a good pusher u have to have good groundstrokes. I suggest you always keep on ur toes and bouncing on your feet during the whole match. This way u can get to the ball faster. Once the opponent returns your shot, you should be able to instantly decide if its going to be a forehand or backhand and then as soon as you see the ball come off his racquet, draw your own one back as you are running to the ball. I will not go through the ways of properly hitting a forehand and backhand as there is no "proper" way, each different type has its own uses in different situations.

    Also try to keep your eyes on the ball throughout the whole match, this seems easy but you dont realize how many people take their eyes off when they are actually hitting the ball. This is also very important. Fitness if a key characteristic for a pusher, which is why the spanish drill is vey effective drill for pushers or people who want to improve consistency
     
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  23. VadeRetro

    VadeRetro New User

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    If you want to be a good pusher:

    Stop having any aspirations of becoming a good tennisplayer.
    Stop looking for Ooh's and Aah's from spectators.
    Accept that you are looked upon with disdain and pity but never with any respect from your fellow players.
    Accept that when you win a match your opponent will never say that you were the better player. He will only mutter apologies for not playing better than he did.

    If you can live with that, there is a world to conquer.
    Just like there is a niche for the Hyena's, the Coyotes and the Vultures in Nature, you can have an easy life of winning against the weak, the reckless, the impatients, people who are not very fit, the young and inexperienced, just by being patient, cunning and tenacious.

    Rule 1. Never go for winners. A true pusher doens't get his points from winners, but from the UE's of his opponents.

    Rule 2. Never go for the lines or the corners. These places are too risky. A true pushers never makes UE's. So he never risks making them.

    Rule 3. Clear the net with enough margin. The net is a source for UE's. So stay well clear of it.

    Rule 4. Never give your balls any pace. Pace may give your opponent some rhythm. Your tactical goal is to draw UE's from your opponent by messing with his mind, by provoking him to go for low-percentage shots.

    Rule 5. Lobbing and moonballing ad infinitem is quite acceptable. The honor is not in how you play, but in winning.

    Rule 6. Junkshots with lots of spin are much more fun than
    topspin-drives. Form is for show-off's, winning is all that counts.

    Rule 7. Take care that you are extremely fit. Getting the ball back is the bread and butter of a true pusher. Be prepared to play a five hour 3-set match if necessary. Always make your opponent hit an extra shot.

    If you can live by these rules and accept the drawbacks, tenniscourts will be happy hunting grounds at clublevel.
     
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  24. EricW

    EricW Professional

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    Instead of being a pusher, why not just be a machine baseliner? That's something that you could build on. Just hit solid topspin shots corner to corner all day.
     
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  25. Rickson

    Rickson G.O.A.T.

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    Backspin is a pusher's bread and butter spin. Forget about topspin and flat drives. Practice that backspin all day long and laugh at the rest of the world while they reach low to scoop up your junk.
     
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  26. wyutani

    wyutani Hall of Fame

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    machine baseliner? that sounds kinda like agassi no? make opponent tired? thats no pusher mate'...
     
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  27. Mick

    Mick Legend

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    I am not quite sure why some people here dislike pushers. If someone could return all my balls and beat me (without going for clean winners), obviously I am not good enough to beat him and he deserves to win the match.
     
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  28. Rafa freak

    Rafa freak Semi-Pro

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    Yep that is what I think too.
     
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  29. smoothtennis

    smoothtennis Hall of Fame

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    People despise pushers, because frankly, if we are honest, it exposes most guys that can't beat them, that they are not nearly as skilled as they think they are. If pretty form, and classic technique can't be consitent, well...the player using it just 'aint that good. That is the raw truth.

    If I can't beat a pusher with my game, then I take note of what errors I was making, mental or otherwise, and go work on it in practice.

    Most people want validation on the tennis court that their game is at a certain level. And a good pusher can show somebody exactly where they stand. The thing to do is give the pusher his respect, and then dial your own game in, and quit complaining.

    Want to feel good about your game? Develop the skills needed to beat a pusher. Then everytime you play one, you get that validation everybody wants.
     
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  30. EricW

    EricW Professional

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    The reason why I mentioned it is he probably wants to be a pusher because he wants to be extremely consistent.. that's the point of a machine baseliner except you can take that type of game to a high level..
     
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  31. EricW

    EricW Professional

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    Think about it man, most pushers are people who have no talent and no technique, they sit at levels 4.0 and below with no room for improvement just running down everything and popping it up to the middle of the court, I wonder why everyone hates them!?

    They have no skill, yet people 4.0 and below (who may or may not have talent) still lose to them because instead of working on generating power and spin and learning modern technique and setting themselves up for maximum potential, they take the easy way out and play the easiest form of tennis.

    Why do you think all pushers have weird technique? Because people with no talent either quit early or find a way to win (pushing or junkballing).

    Exactly, why would anyone not look down on someone who takes the easy way out in order to succeed right away (at the low levels) instead of setting themselves up for success due to hard work. Pushing takes no skill.

     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2007
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  32. theace21

    theace21 Hall of Fame

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    and the strong mental game to wear and frustrate your opponent. Showing great patience and physical ability to run down shots...
     
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  33. The Gorilla

    The Gorilla Banned

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    poeple don't like playing pushers because hitting winners is fun, you can divide people into those that want to have fun and those that want to win.Do you think federer enjoyed the Roland Garros final?Or the canas game?
     
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  34. Mick

    Mick Legend

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    Thank you for the explanation. I respect your opinion, Eric, but I disagree that pushers who have beaten me have no talent or technique . I would accept that they are better tennis players than me and try to figure out how to beat them next time as 'smoothtennis' has suggested in a few posts above :)
     
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  35. The Gorilla

    The Gorilla Banned

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    if you are better at pushing the ball back into court than your opponent is at hitting winners you'd be a fool not to do it, nadal can play both styles but he knows he'll definitely beat federer if he just pushes the ball back to him.
     
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  36. autumn_leaf

    autumn_leaf Hall of Fame

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    start doing ladder runs. and if you puke, well thats normal.
     
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  37. herosol

    herosol Professional

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    mold it into a defensive baseline game.

    1. train for running. you need if you want to be a soon successful pusher
    2. never go for more, especially against people who are better then you.
    3. learn to be a tactician; push but put it in places you know your opponent has trouble with (is it short balls? backhand?)
    4. you don't need to train strokes, just train to be able to hit anything you can get to.
     
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  38. etea

    etea New User

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    Rickson, that's exactly what i do. Lmao :p
     
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  39. etea

    etea New User

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    Hey EricW i came here to get some help with my game. this isn't a discussion for pushers. give me some advise or get out.
     
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  40. etea

    etea New User

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    Hey EricW i came here to get some help with MY game. this isn't a discussion about your complaints against pushers. Give me advice or get out.
     
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  41. etea

    etea New User

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    Instead of arguing with little biatches here, heres a few things about me that you could work off of to form advice.
    STRENGTHS
    RightHanded
    Excellent Forehand Topspin
    Excellent Backhand Backspin
    Great Control of Ball
    Very Fit (5 Years of Wrestling)
    Excellent Court Sense (0 outs per game always in or line)
    WEAKNESSES
    Bad Net Game
    Unreliable Flat Serve (90%-in slice serve)
    Undeveloped Strategy
    Bad Overheads.

    Answer back quick, try-outs are on August 20th. :p
     
    #41
  42. denty151

    denty151 Rookie

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    now, now.. let's not get too testy. ;)

    when posting on a public forum, you should expect this kind of criticism.

    but back to the topic, i can say that i don't like playing pushers and that i think it's not a great way to play tennis, but pushing is also a style of play. i think it's awesome that you found your niche in the game of tennis and you want to improve on it. but what i think a lot of the "haters" mean by their degrading comments are that there's not much room to improve when you are playing the pusher game. though i don't think that's true at all.

    you already have a lot of tips and things to work on mentioned in this post (excluding the negative comments) but i just think that fitness, consistency, and mental strength are the 3 biggest weapons of a pusher. If you can hit the same exact shot every single time, without making an error, more power to you my friend! If you can out last your opponent on the court in any weather condition, more power to you my friend! and finally if your mentality doesn't falter on you, then again MORE POWER TO YOU.
     
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  43. etea

    etea New User

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    uhh alright i'll get right on that today.
     
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  44. EricW

    EricW Professional

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    Already did, I suggested you try to mold your game into a machine baseliner game. Watch Guillermo Canas play a lot, and turn your game into that. He's an excellent retriever, but he's also a machine baseliner when he wants to.

    This way you can take your game as far as you want. Make sure you have excellent technique and the strength to generate topspin and pace,(when you play you wont go for broke, just hit enough topspin to never miss and enough pace so when they are running corner to corner they have to run, not walk) and hit it corner to corner, and retrieve everything with backspin or high lobs.

    The problem with my advice above is that it'll take a lot of practice to get good at, (but once you get good at it, people will be scared of your consistency and know that you'll never miss, yet still move them around, and at the same time nothing goes past you.) All but the bold sentence are the characteristics of a "no-potential" pusher, but you'll have potential

    Whereas normal "no potential" pushing takes minimal practice

    If you want to be a real, no potential pusher, change every stroke into a continental grip, and just use a push stroke and put it everything deep, and learn how to hit low skidding backspin and high lobs for retrieving
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2007
    #44
  45. EricW

    EricW Professional

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    The reason we say he has no potential is, it takes millions of forehand and backhand where you "go for it" until you have the strength and technique to do it consistently and coordinated.

    With a pusher game, you don't need good technique, or strength, to hit weak balls. So you never develop either and unless you change your game, you have no potential. You can't make it all that far with weak shots.
     
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  46. denty151

    denty151 Rookie

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    you are assuming that he doesn't have good technique or a good amount of strength which i think is wrong. we don't even know who this person is. for all we know he could have marvelous strokes just not a big array of "winner" shots to hit. or the reason he pushes is because he lacks the confidence in his shots still so he's a little scared to give it the extra umph.

    but i yes i do understand what you are saying and i'm just defending the little guy here. don't you agree with me that everyone needs to start somewhere and that it's better to start playing VERY VERY consistent rather than going out there and just blasting balls out? i know it's 2 opposite sides of the spectrum but you get what i'm saying. and i wouldn't go as far as to say that there is NO potential because i'd like to think that there is always potential.
     
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  47. dave333

    dave333 Hall of Fame

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    I think someone on this board said that when learning something new, you should expect to lose if you try to apply it in a match until you master it.

    Basically, to win you need to use shots that are reliable and you have mastered, while to get better you need to practice new things until they are reliable and mastered.

    I'd say it would be better to start off with real strokes and practice getting them consistent, rather than already be consistent with pushing strokes.
     
    #47
  48. etea

    etea New User

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    That was some real good advice, i am going to take that under consideration the best i can. i also have one more question, since i'm going to be a machine baseliner + pusher what racquet would produce the most power? Also, what is 'pace'?
     
    #48

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