calling on buggy whippers

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by dozu, Jan 3, 2011.

  1. dozu

    dozu Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,546
    I think the buggy whipper is a happy medium between the classic closed stance FH, and the modern WW.

    versatility - can hit high or low balls, early or a bit late, (feels like) more margin for error, doesn't require great flexibility (important for those who are no longer teenagers), can hit running FH easy. can add just as much spin as the WW motion, without having to turn the core 180 degrees.

    any other whippers out there?
     
    #1
  2. maggmaster

    maggmaster Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2010
    Messages:
    1,750
    I use an over the head follow through on high bounding balls out wide, does that count?
     
    #2
  3. Power Player

    Power Player G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2008
    Messages:
    19,761
    Location:
    On my iPhone
    I use one now and then, but it just happens and I don't preplan it. Usually I use to try and go DTL when pulled wide, but I'd rather hit a topspin lob.

    It is great when kicked out wide, but I still prefer to try and load off my outside foot and hit a deep return to stay alive.
     
    #3
  4. dozu

    dozu Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,546
    I am feeling generous today so I will count you in :)..... when pulled out wide, this shot is more of a necessity than a choice.... you are running violently to your right, so your core can't turn around and the arm has to fly over.
     
    #4
  5. Jonny S&V

    Jonny S&V Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2006
    Messages:
    4,892
    Location:
    Northern MO
    You can't hit through the ball consistently without putting a lot of stress on your shoulder (see Sharapova). Why don't you just take a dose of your magic pill and just focus on clean hitting?
     
    #5
  6. dozu

    dozu Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,546
    hm... Rafa's 'standard' fh is a whipper, no shoulder issue there.

    Maria has a tendency of catching a lot of FH late, for whatever reason.... maybe that's why her shoulder was stressed.
     
    #6
  7. cellofaan

    cellofaan Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2009
    Messages:
    469
    #7
  8. Jonny S&V

    Jonny S&V Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2006
    Messages:
    4,892
    Location:
    Northern MO
    Rafa doesn't hit "through" the ball. I'm talking more our (in your case, 3.5-4.0 correct?) level of play. Rafa is one of the most athletically freakish people you can get. Whenever Rafa hits through the ball, what does he do? Standard WW-forehand. Trust me, it's a bad idea to hit only buggy-whip forehands in today's game (in the long run).
     
    #8
  9. dozu

    dozu Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,546
    shouldn't have much to do with playing level, a good shot is a good shot.

    me... I am only 3.0 (the number is meaningless anyway)
     
    #9
  10. cellofaan

    cellofaan Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2009
    Messages:
    469
    Rafa's standard forehand is not a buggy whip.

    Also, it does allow one to add a lot of spin, but it doesn't allow for the same pace. Windshield wiper forehands do.

    If anything, I'd put the windshield wiper as the medium between classic and buggy whip.

    Who invented the term 'buggy whip' anyway? It sounds like a pokemon move.
    Did anyone know buggy whips actually exist? They're whips.
     
    #10
  11. dozu

    dozu Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,546
    ok, watch a Rafa match, and count how many BW vs otherwise... you maybe surprised.

    agree on the (small) sacrifice of pace for the spin.
     
    #11
  12. Jonny S&V

    Jonny S&V Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2006
    Messages:
    4,892
    Location:
    Northern MO
    Fixed for you.

    If you're semi-crippled, then yes, a 3.0 rating is meaningless. 3.0 means you can't even hit all the shots necessary to be able to coach a player thoroughly. :shock:
     
    #12
  13. dozu

    dozu Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,546
    watch Rafa, where is the large sacrifice.. it depends on the player, but the sacrifice doesn't have to be large.

    let's stay away from the rating discussion... no need to open that can of worms...I don't play USTA.. but I have winning percentage of 50-95% against good players within driving distance.

    good = old guys (former D1s, and D3s) + young guys (2 star & 1 star recruits on http://www.tennisrecruiting.net/

    I say meaningless in the sense that 5.5 in Hawaii is really 4.0 in FL, not in the sense that I can't hold my ground... 1 friend who has played USTA for 30 years estimated me as 5.0, but there are also those who gave me 3.5 here, so anything goes.

    College recruiting standards, although also vary greatly from region to region, is still more reliable than NTRP.

    But I digress.
     
    #13
  14. Jonny S&V

    Jonny S&V Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2006
    Messages:
    4,892
    Location:
    Northern MO
    The only surface that Rafa BWs often is clay, and that's because it's not about power or depth, it's about consistency more than anything. If you watch him on any other surface, 75-80% of the time he's hitting standard WW forehands. In the past you would have been correct, as he would hit BW forehands constantly on all surfaces, but there is a reason he fixed this, and there is a reason he is more consistently aggressive.
     
    #14
  15. cellofaan

    cellofaan Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2009
    Messages:
    469
    I did, and you're right actually (I'd say 50-50 depending on the surface). Sorry about that. Most vids on his forehand show him hitting a WW.



    I still wouldn't advise it as a standard forehand. The shot is usually used in tough positions (on the run, leaning backwards), since it doesn't depend as much on weight transfer and core rotation, and pretty much all fundamentals, and is much more about arm movement.
    Those are advantages in that it is easier to hit a somewhat decent shot with, but disadvantages in that it may prevent players from learning proper fundamentals for a classic or ww forehand.

    Especially for us amateurs, leaning into your shot is about much more than just that particular shot, it's also about a mindset, to try to get to the ball earlier with proper footwork so that you at least have the possibility of weight transfer, on forehands and backhands, while if you're used to being a little late(r) on the forehand, you're more prone to become sloppy on your footwork, and that affects other strokes as well.


    So in short, I try to hit a ww forehand from a neutral stance with proper weight transfer and core rotation as much as possible, and only hit a BW when I'm getting stretched or messed up my footwork.


    That being said, I'm still tweaking my strokes everytime I'm on the court, so I can't claim to be able to hit all strokes to a point where I'm completely satisfied with my technique.
     
    #15
  16. arche3

    arche3 Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2009
    Messages:
    5,389
    true. you cannot tell ntrp from a video. especially at the amateur levels like us here.
     
    #16
  17. arche3

    arche3 Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2009
    Messages:
    5,389
    I tried it for the first time sunday. It works well when I am on the run. I will incorporate it into my game. plus it makes me feel like rafa!
     
    #17
  18. Jonny S&V

    Jonny S&V Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2006
    Messages:
    4,892
    Location:
    Northern MO
    You can't, true, but you can tell competency levels pretty easily.
     
    #18
  19. dozu

    dozu Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,546
    not much either - you don't know if the player in the video is going full speed, or holding back (so the hitting video doesn't become 'how to pick up balls')... and you don't know the other parts of the game that are not on the video... more importantly, you don't know what kind of mental toughness and strategic ability he has, what other tools he has, how well he analyzes the opp's strength and flaws, and what tools he can use to take advantage of the flaws.

    I suppose you may think twice about the statement above if I say that your own video looks like a 4.0 at best.... no offense, just trying to make a point... as D2 guys are legit 4.5 guys.

    usually these meaningless rating discussions lead to nothing good, except extra consumption of popcorns (I know tennis_balla doesn't like extra butter).... we've let the genie out of the bottle a bit, so I say we put it back in the bottle and keep it sealed.

    peace.
     
    #19
  20. dozu

    dozu Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,546
    with that racket in your signature, you better get the whipper going bro!

    and also a yellow nike bandana would help putting extra RPM on those whippers.
     
    #20
  21. dozu

    dozu Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,546
    ok, since the Rafa/Nole US Open is on TTC like every night these days, just count how many BW vs. non-BW.... the 75-80% would be incorrect (as an understatement)
     
    #21
  22. dozu

    dozu Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,546
    #22
  23. Jonny S&V

    Jonny S&V Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2006
    Messages:
    4,892
    Location:
    Northern MO
    Notice all of them were on the run and/or returns? When ever Rafa tries to finish a point, what does he do?

    EDIT: all = most
     
    #23
  24. dozu

    dozu Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,546
    care to count thru the entire video? feel free.... there is also part 2 and part 3.

    i thought in tennis players are supposed to run, no?

    I just watched a bit more, and still haven't found a single WW FH.... when is he supposed to use it then?

    shouldn't be hard to find one if it's 75-80% of his FHs
     
    #24
  25. Jonny S&V

    Jonny S&V Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2006
    Messages:
    4,892
    Location:
    Northern MO
    Ok, maybe I was wrong. It's still not a good idea (how many pros hit as many BW forehands as Nadal). I guarantee you that BWing a majority of your strokes at my level wouldn't work. The BW is not a natural-stroke, and it DOES put a lot more stress on the shoulder (from the lifting motion). Nadal gets away with it due to his rather impressive build. Sharapova obviously couldn't handle it, and she's a lot closer to what we should be striving to be (obviously not footwork-wise). If you taught a child to strictly hit a buggy-whip forehand, you would find that their shoulder would be shot by the time they made it to their 20s.
     
    #25
  26. Roy125

    Roy125 Professional

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2009
    Messages:
    944
    Location:
    San Diego, California
    I find that a large amount of Rafa's forehands are that reverse-forehand, buggy whip type. This is a large contrast from him practicing though.
     
    #26
  27. dozu

    dozu Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,546
    ^^^

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LxRDaJOBipM&feature=related

    just finished watching 'part2'.... so part 1&2 together, I didn't bother to count the BWs, estimate would be about 70 of them.... non BW - only 5.

    this thread was about a casual discussion to get fellow whippers to share the joy, never meant to be 'let's teach the kids the whipper'.

    as the old saying goes - you don't know what you don't know, the motion might look to some as stressful to the shoulders, but it may not be (from personal experience I can say I feel no stress up there, and LESS stress than a WW... but that's just me).

    true, not many pros use the BW as the stardard FH, but that's partly why Rafa is No.1 and the other guys aint.... it takes courage to be different. (the why = being different, not the BW shot itself... although technically the BW is why Rafa's FH is extra heavy, because he can activate his forearm to add spin.... at least that's how I understand his action... and I have made a very amateurish video to show why BW allows forearm activation while the standard WW doesn't)
     
    #27
  28. Consolation

    Consolation Rookie

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2010
    Messages:
    243
    There's a few people that have looked at rafa's stroke with high speed film and think his reverse forehand is fundamentally different than other top pros.

    He comes into impact with much more in-out path than other pros (verdasco is similar). The momentum from that results in the usual circular, around the body followthough, getting ovalized.

    Unlike other pros that tend to use a reverse finish when hitting late, nadal's contact point when he reverse finishes is essentially identical to when he wraps (it's way out in front). They theorize that what determines where he follows through is just the vectors of the forces he uses to hit a shot. A little less low-high, a mid-height ball, a flat crosscourt, may be more likely to result in a wrap finish, though there doesn't seem to be a hard rule.

    That would fit with what nadal has said, that he doesn't think about his followthrough, he hits the ball and the racquet goes where it wants.
     
    #28
  29. Jonny S&V

    Jonny S&V Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2006
    Messages:
    4,892
    Location:
    Northern MO
    As someone who wanted to be Rafa for a while (when I was 15, horrible phase in my life), I can say that it did cause stress on my shoulder, and ultimately led to a partial tear in my rotator-cuff (I know this because the pain started after a forehand, not a serve). It does not take courage to be different, and one can postulate that the reason that Rafa (and Sharapova) hit the BW so often is because they play with their non-dominant hand. I play with my semi-non-dominant hand (ambidextrous, write lefty, play righty), so playing like Rafa seemed semi-natural to me. However, my shoulder thought otherwise. I don't mind if you were to use this style, the more power to you, but the fact is that the lack to penetration and possible damage to the shoulder rules it out as a viable consistent stroke pattern in my opinion.

    As for forearm activation, that is something you can teach without the BW (see Federer).
     
    #29
  30. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2008
    Messages:
    35,707
    I think I can hit the heavy looped topspin buggy whip very consistently. Only problem is, sometimes I hit it short, and my competition like to turn sideways, lay back, and crush my ball into an open court.
    So I've learned to use that only when forced either inside, or running wide, as a last ditch heavily topped rally ball that safely lands IN.
    Since I can no longer run balls down all day from the baseline, a flatter topspin ball is more forcing, deeper, and just almost as consistent, but doesn't get belted back as often.
    But if YOU like heavy topspin at the expense of ball speed, go for it.
     
    #30
  31. dozu

    dozu Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,546
    ^^

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O5rWS3sun74&feature=channel

    there is forearm activation (reactive ones like Roger has), and there is forearm activation (active ones like Rafa has).

    in the vid above, Roger didn't violently use his forearm, because he can't.... as flexible as he is, he already hit his left arm a couple of times..

    Just think.... the buggy whip is also called a helicopter, because while Rafa's hand decelerates as far to the right to above his right ear, the racket goes around 360 degrees above the head, goes as far to the right as beyond his right shoulder, then the helicopter blade returns over to above his left shoulder. This type of deceleration is necessary because the relative speed difference between the racket head to the hand, is far greater in a BW action compared to the WW action, as a result of the active forearm.... and this type of deceleration path is physically impossible for WW because the helicopter blade would cut the player in half.

    I hope the above makes sense.

    Edit - my own video, as amateurish as it is, actually has the same tempo as Rafa has, in terms of the arm/wrist/racket head action.... because if the tempo is in tune with the gravitational drop, you basically just give it a nudge to toss it high, and the forearm is relaxed enough to actively add spin.
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2011
    #31
  32. Jonny S&V

    Jonny S&V Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2006
    Messages:
    4,892
    Location:
    Northern MO
    It makes sense, but if I were to try and teach the BW to a player, I would bet a lot of money that they would start arming the ball (which is the natural thing that players do on the BW), and arming the ball is a whole 'nother problem in itself (going out on a limb, but see Del Potro - arm surgery).
     
    #32
  33. dozu

    dozu Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,546
    yes - see my edit above - tempo is the key.... I am gonna take another blame to mention these again -

    human racket
    tempo / gravitational pull.

    if a player is fighting gravity, and his swing is not in tune with gravity, then he'd have to lift the arm to that height, burning a lot of muscle energy, and there would be no racket head speed left up there..... this would be like using muscle power to lift the kid on swing up high.... it would look silly, and it's ineffective.

    but if the play understands tempo.... (pushing kid on a swing analogy), he'd use the gravitational drop to his advantage, (similar to let the kid gather momentum on the way down), then player adds power (if you push the kid, WHEN would you push??), the arm then flys to that height with momentum, not muscle power (the kid is now laughing and giggling, flying high to the other side of the swing set), and the kid is relaxed to have fun (in this case the kid being the forearm and it's free to add spin).
     
    #33
  34. dozu

    dozu Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,546
    Do you have links to any details of such find? I'd be very interested... and the in to out mentality is something I also try to work on..

    and I can imagine that he doesn't need to think about the follow thru.... human instincts are very good in not hurting ourselves.... even a 2.5 hack wont let a follow-thru hit himself in the face (usually, that is :)
     
    #34
  35. arche3

    arche3 Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2009
    Messages:
    5,389
    yeah I turned into a nadal-****... pathetic. I am contemplating switching rackets to the blx 90.
     
    #35
  36. plumcrazy

    plumcrazy Rookie

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2008
    Messages:
    181
    Location:
    Winston-Salem, NC
    Count me in on the Buggy whipping!!! I'm 38, a 3.5-4.0 and not looking to turn pro any time soon. I've struggled with my forehand for 20 years until I found this style. I play to have fun. I use the Buggy whip on most of my shots. It's fun to see the ball go over the net with so much spin and dip down right at the end. I know I should hit through the ball and do the WW forehand more but like I said, I play to have fun and get some good exercise. I'm teaching my 5 and 3 year old the right way to hit the ball. My opinion is you're still hitting a WW wiper forehand but you're just finishing higher on the follow through. Hope you're enjoying the racquet Dozu. I think I saw it on your video the other day.
     
    #36
  37. dozu

    dozu Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,546
    ^^^ right on.... finally a fellow whipper who can share the joy :)

    yes, it's loads of fun to see these little monsters dropping on the other side of the court like little bombs falling out of the sky, and the explode a little, forward and sideways :)

    and thanks again for the racket, mucho enjoying it :)
     
    #37
  38. bad_call

    bad_call Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2006
    Messages:
    5,422
    recently (unintentionally if i might add) hit with a SW fh grip and hit the BW. it was cool...er dope...er sick. :) could really feel the contact.
     
    #38
  39. dozu

    dozu Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Messages:
    4,546
    ^^ 'unintentionally' -- how so? :)
     
    #39
  40. bad_call

    bad_call Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2006
    Messages:
    5,422
    ^^ usually use an overgrip but this time of year opted to remove it. really like the feel of the replacement grip which is hard and somewhat tacky. so just did a slight wrist rotation from the eastern fh and let her rip.
     
    #40
  41. phnx90

    phnx90 Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2010
    Messages:
    3,064
    Location:
    Banned
    When I was a kid, I used to play squash and tennis a lot...I hated how squash balls just didn't bounce, so when I got too lazy to bend my knees, I'd whip the ball off the floor. It was a pretty natural shot; almost like swinging my arm in a full circle. After a while (because laziness runs in my blood) I played with that follow through almost exclusively. A few years later, when I watched Nadal play for the first time on telly, I swear I thought he copied me :D Ah, childhood memories.

    I don't use a BW often when I play tennis though, unless the ball is low, high or wide (against a good player this could mean about 80% of my forehands). It's most fun when I hit crosscourt with it when my opponent's come in to volley; even with him jumping to hit an overhead, the ball would be just outside his reach and land on the baseline with a lot of pace.

    But the biggest problem with my BW is a) I can't make that kind of shot (second para) every time and perhaps more importantly b) everyone automatically thinks I'm just trying to copy Rafa.
     
    #41
  42. only4theweak187

    only4theweak187 Banned

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2010
    Messages:
    250
    its how i learned to hit with heavy topspin. i use inside-out forehand buggy whip "reverse" forehands to my opponents backhands works ESPECIALLY well against a either a right OR lefty opponent's one-handed backhand.
     
    #42

Share This Page