Drills for anticipation before the the shot and recovery after the shot.

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by aarenes, Aug 11, 2014.

  1. aarenes

    aarenes New User

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    Hello all

    As the title suggests, I am look for drills for anticipation before the the shot and recovery after the shot.

    I am training a couple of 2.5 guys and girls who asked me to help them. The biggest challenge I see with them is that they move after the ball bounces..when its already too late... And that they stay where they finish the shot often finding themselves in no man's land after a couple of rallies.

    I tried searching via tapa talk for drills but didn't find any.

    Thnaks in advance
     
    #1
  2. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Tell 'um to head back to the expect spot of the opponent's shot, right after they hit theirs. Split the angle of intersect, and you don't have to get all the way there, you just have to be moving in that direction.
     
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  3. RajS

    RajS Rookie

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    After trying many suggestions on how to anticipate the direction of the ball just before the hit, I have come to the conclusion that I will never get it. But in the process of learning this, I have stumbled on something that seems to be working well for me.

    The assumption I now go with is that in almost all cases, unless it is obvious, I can only pick up the direction after the hit. It is all a question now of how quickly I can do that.

    What really helps is to have a really calm mind and relaxed body well before the opponent hits the ball. Thus, after I hit the ball, I no longer try to recover to the optimal position. My emphasis is to be fully recovered and ready to split step before my shot reaches my opponent, rather than timing it so finely that I get back in position just in time to split step, or worse, I find myself still running. Those few instants of "extra" time help my mind calm down, and really help in tracking the hit quickly. I may end up doing a couple of hops instead of just one, but the results are good.

    Maybe this was obvious to a lot of people, but I have never seen recovery stated this way. Hopefully I am not doing something wrong!
     
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  4. moonballs

    moonballs Hall of Fame

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    Two of my daughter's coaches sometime constantly shout out instructions telling her to move during rally practices. I think that helps a lost. When I am hitting with her I can not do this kind of multi tasking.
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2014
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  5. Tyrus

    Tyrus Professional

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    I find a calm mind slows down the world around it. Panic seems to create chaos and confusion, all of sudden you're overwhelmed and can't make good decisions.

    Keep your feet light by keeping them moving during rallies. Jump Rope is a great exercise to simulate what your feet/body should be doing in between shots.

    Something like moonballs suggestion, place 5 cones on the court:

    1: Baseline at the deuce alley
    2: service line at deuce alley
    3: service line T
    4: service line at the ad alley
    5: baseline at the ad alley.

    Remember these numbers, but don't label them.

    Start at middle of the baseline.

    Have someone else shout out numbers and you run to that cone and then back to the middle, making you have to think about what cone is what number and react quickly, this is why we aren't labeling the cones you have to use your memory.

    The progression goes from running to one cone, then 2 (i.e. 1 then 4 then back), then 3 (if you feel daring)

    Great test of your ability to think and react quickly.
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2014
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  6. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Can it be so hard?
    Say you just ran to your right baseline singles alley to hit your shot, where should you go?
    Simple, head back towards the middle of your court. DUH! Or should you stand there and admire your shot?
     
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  7. Tyrus

    Tyrus Professional

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    I'm guilty of this so many times it's not even funny.
     
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  8. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Welcome to the world of 3.5.
    And you don't have to make it back to center of intersect. You only need to move your momentum towards it, and how far depending on your skills in speed, agility, and reversing direction.
     
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  9. user92626

    user92626 Legend

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    This is an area that I also have an incredibly hard time with. Basically, if you are healthy and could run, the only problem where you miss a shot or set up awkwardly is when you don't know how to recover and anticipate opponent's next shot.

    I don't know I just run back to the middle and imagine to cover both sides of the court. Somehow opponents still could hit a lot of shots past me. :(
     
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  10. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Unless you are out past your doubles alley, you should never RUN back to position to cover the possible angles of your opponent's next shot. You should head back, maybe saunter back, maybe even sidestep back, but don't RUN back, unless your opponent tends only to go CC away from you.
    It's easy to hit behind a RUNNING player.....for a clean winner.
     
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  11. Tyrus

    Tyrus Professional

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    And here I am calling myself a 4.0...

    Yeah, I know what I should do but sometimes you just get so caught up in hitting a good shot you forget to think.
     
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  12. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Ever watch pro tennis?
    They hit what should be a winner, then they immediately get back in balance and head for the center of intersect.
    Same with 4.5 level players.
    Same with 4.0 players.
     
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  13. Dimcorner

    Dimcorner Professional

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    From badminton I learned to play percentages based on situation. When they are winding up for a smash you have to cover the most area and cheat a little to the highest percentage of where they are going to hit. This percentage is based on angle, net height relative to shot, length of court to be covered by the shot, and position of the opponent. I try to apply this to tennis too and at least at 3.0/3.5 it helps. I don't go back to center, usually I'm a hair past the center hash to the opposite of the opponent and starting to load up legs as they swing at ball.
     
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  14. Tyrus

    Tyrus Professional

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    Ever been human? Ever made mistakes?

    Never seen a bit of self-defeating humor backfire on me like this...

    Internet for ya...
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2014
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  15. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Hey, you step in dog doo, you get ridiculed for it.
    Maybe this ridicule would cure you from hitting and admiring your shots.
    Why post anythiing on the forums, if you can't admit you made a mistake and therefore need to own up to it...by accepting your just reward.
     
    #15
  16. Topspin Shot

    Topspin Shot Legend

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    The general rule of thumb is to try to reach the bisection point but split step at your opponent's contact no matter where you are.
     
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  17. Tyrus

    Tyrus Professional

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    "Dammit, I stepped in dog poop!"

    -Well did you try looking where you were going?

    :neutral: I accept my fate. Ego told me i knew what i was doing. Reality struck down.
     
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  18. user92626

    user92626 Legend

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    Can you elaborate what you mean by get back in balance? Like they lose their balance, posture after making a fh and they need to stand up straight?

    For me, I only understand that I just hit and then run back to the center mark. I stop running about the time opponent hits.
     
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  19. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Do you need to stand upright to get "in balance"?
    Would an "athletic stance" apply for the job in hand?
    Don't you need to stop for a millisecond before changing directions?
    Can you stop on your exact followthru position and change directions quickly, or do you have to balance first, then change directions?
    "Running", I assume, is with some amount of speed? Wouldn't your opponent choose to hit behind you, when you're "running" back to the center of possibe intersect?
    As TopspinShot mentioned, isn't it better to assume a split stance position as the opponent hit's the ball? A split step position can be drifting towards your center of intersect.
     
    #19
  20. Tyrus

    Tyrus Professional

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    Well your balance/posture after hitting a shot are different than neutral position waiting for the next shot.

    It's less hit and run, and more hit and recover...meaning you square yourself back up to facing the net and instead of turning and running back you shuffle back to the middle prepared for a shot to come back to you in any direction.

    Did I learn something LeeD? :)
     
    #20
  21. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    You got it perfectly. OTOH, you probably knew it already.
     
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  22. user92626

    user92626 Legend

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    You guys are awesome! :)

    I'm gonna try to keep that in mind next time I'm out. My weekly partner hits behind me alot though.


    so, basically after a shot, you kinda have to hop on both feet at least once to regain the balance, right?
     
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  23. Topspin Shot

    Topspin Shot Legend

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    I wouldn't say shuffle back so much as be square to the net by the time the ball reaches your opponent. In general, shuffling is slow and won't help you cover much distance, so it's only fine when you don't have to recover too far.
     
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  24. user92626

    user92626 Legend

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    Now I'm confused again. Shouldn't it be like this...
    you hit a shot,
    then try to get back to middle (or wherever the best location is) by running, shuffling, walking,
    then stop running and get in balance/square at the net only before opponent hits

    right?
     
    #24
  25. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    You hit your shot, but you have to regain some semblence of balance, because your followthru position is NOT a good position to change directions and start moving from.
    You head towards center of opponent's angles, but you slow down and open your stance while still moving towards your destination in anticpation of your opponent's shot going CC, AT you, or behind you. You don't need to stop moving towards your destination, but you have to be balanced enough to move in any direction.
    Running is not a balance position to react to where the ball is going.
     
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  26. Tyrus

    Tyrus Professional

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    If you square yourself up to the net after the shot you are already balanced.

    The shuffle back to the middle allows you to move laterally without losing that balance. Then you're ready for whatever comes back at you.

    Balance first, then move.

    EDIT: I should just be patient, LeeD already beat me to it twice.
     
    #26
  27. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    But you explain it differently than I did, so for some viewers, your version is easier to understand.
    I get lots of flak because of the way I express myself. Tough cookies for me, but oftentimes, what I say is really more important than the ego that said it.
     
    #27
  28. Tyrus

    Tyrus Professional

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    Shuffling is too slow when they pull you off the court.

    Not so much when it's closer to a neutral ball/rally...if you're at the alley then the center is only about 2-3 shuffle steps away which is not that far.
     
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  29. user92626

    user92626 Legend

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    Actually Tyrus and LeeD make a lot of sense. I'm trying to imagine what your said is like in action.

    What sounds like to me what I do wrong is I rush back too fast instead of moving back cautiously even if it's slower. That's what you guys are suggesting.
     
    #29
  30. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Seems in tennis, against fast players, you hit AT them or behind them, negating their speed and exposing their true hitting ability.
    Against big guys, you always hit behind them, as changing direction is very hard carrying lots of mass.
    Against slow guys, you hit to the open court.
    Of course, these are generalities. There exists fast movers who hit well, so you end up shaking their hands at the net.
     
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  31. Tyrus

    Tyrus Professional

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    Isn't that funny? At my club, the best strategy against the best athletes hitting at them.

    Make em run and they'll hit incredible shots...hit at them and its like they don't know what to do with their feet.
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2014
    #31
  32. RajS

    RajS Rookie

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    Agreed. But I try to go further than that to give the mind a few extra moments to recover. I try to stop moving well before the opponent makes contact, even though I may not have recovered to the proper position fully, to gain a few extra moments to recover and relax. Helps me a lot!
     
    #32
  33. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Thanks a lot!
    You just posted how to beat LeeD easily, without even trying.
    Yes, I"m gimped and can't run. But if you try hitting the corners, I'll anticipate and somehow get there, to hit a weirdo short angle or deep slice save.
    If you hit AT me, I'll go for more than I can handle, and make your life really easy.
     
    #33
  34. user92626

    user92626 Legend

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    My weekly friend/opponent is exactly that. He's a gym goer and very fit, hits very well on running. But if I hit slow ball to his bh, he's gonna get very conscious and mess up or cough up easy shots.
     
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  35. Topspin Shot

    Topspin Shot Legend

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    Which is yet another reason to hit crosscourt. :)
     
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  36. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    DTL baseline shots should be reserved for winner attempts, not rally balls.
     
    #36
  37. user92626

    user92626 Legend

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    Not sure how true that is. Over the weekend tournament, I and my opponents hit loads of dtl shots to each other's bh :) I'm lefty. Many of our points felt like eternity. Had we hit more to each other's FH, it would of been much longer. 2 10-game, no-ad sets which we pretty much played nonstop to clear the court for others lasted over 2 hrs for me. :)
     
    #37
  38. Tyrus

    Tyrus Professional

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    Keywords should be

    I'm pretty sure everyone, including pros, hit DTL rally ball shots simply because they were the right shots at the right time.
     
    #38
  39. user92626

    user92626 Legend

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    Hey Tyrus and LeeD,

    Last night I came to the court and applied the balance thing that we discussed earlier. It worked pretty well.

    Basically, after I hit a shot, I did a both foot hopping for balance (felt balanced), and there was enough time for another hopping as opponent hit. Then, the next shot I hit felt a lot easier.

    This is different from what I did before: hit, run back to middle, stop and hop as opponent hits. I don't understand why several hoppings (as opposed to only 1) makes that much of a difference.
     
    #39
  40. RetroSpin

    RetroSpin Hall of Fame

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    Yep. Hit a DTL rally ball only if you want to run. I guess the one exception might be if you want to change the rally from FH's CC to BH's and possibly open up the chnace for an inside out FH.
     
    #40

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