Feedback on some point play

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by andrehanderson, Dec 27, 2013.

  1. andrehanderson

    andrehanderson Semi-Pro

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    I'm in the black hat, shirt and shorts.

    I'm a bit frustrated by some really bad lower back pain, but even more so by my short game. Any tips on how I can improve my game inside the service line?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fLqkZiAdx_8

    The lower back pain has me serving a lot more lightly than I normally would. It's also made me move more stiffly, I think.
     
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  2. mightyrick

    mightyrick Hall of Fame

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    Your backhand is much better than your forehand. You prepare for the backhand very early and amazingly consistently. The backhand swing tempo is so nice and relaxed. Very unlike most players at your level. Not surprisingly, you are highly consistent with your backhand with great directional control.

    The forehand has a lot of issues, though. Again, mostly with preparation problems. You don't prepare consistently or early enough.

    Using the backhand as evidence, you clearly have the ability to anticipate well and prepare early. I think you need to apply this to the forehand. Anticipate. Get into a consistent hitting stance. Use a relaxed swing tempo.

    Exactly like you do on your backhand.
     
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  3. andrehanderson

    andrehanderson Semi-Pro

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    Thank you so much for the feedback!

    My forehand causes me a ton of trouble, especially inside the baseline (when I feel rushed). Any good videos you'd recommend for working on forehand preparation?
     
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  4. andrehanderson

    andrehanderson Semi-Pro

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    The camera angle isn't great. Unfortunately the fence is only a few feet behind the baseline.
     
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  5. andrehanderson

    andrehanderson Semi-Pro

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    Come on! It's the holidays!
     
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  6. Topspin Shot

    Topspin Shot Legend

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    Hey, mate. Give us a few hours. :)

    Alright, you lost to a pusher, something that's probably happened to everyone who's played the game. Heck, even pushers lose to pushers. So, to start with, did you notice that this particular pusher is much stronger off his forehand than his backhand? This means that whenever you get a short ball, you should hit to his backhand and come in off that. The only time you want to change it up is if your peripheral vision spots your opponent completely on the other side of the court, meaning that you'll get a free point if you go to his forehand side.

    Since it's the holidays, I'll also give you a bit of technical advice. :) I really like your service action, but I wonder why you take so much off your second serve. Just turn a little more sideways and spin the ball a bit more. The spin will make the ball drop in. If you've tried this before, and it hasn't worked for you, tell me, and I'll take a closer look at your motion to see if I can spot anything.

    Your backhand is pretty good for now, so I'll largely ignore it. Your forehand might benefit if you watch this video. The main idea is that the ball goes in the direction your racket face points, not the direction you swing. Therefore, your goal is to keep your racket face vertical (or slightly closed if you hit a lot of topspin, but this doesn't really apply to you) throughout the hitting zone. If the face closes, you'll dump the ball into the net, and if it opens, you'll send it long. Here's the video. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ot2xQJRJ5Q

    Enjoy the game, and happy holidays!
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2013
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  7. dominikk1985

    dominikk1985 Legend

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    you are both dinking too much. you both can do solid shots but every time you have to move (especially forward) you play a weak slice and just bunt it into the opponents court.

    you both could get much better if you used your legs to get in position and hit a normal topspin groundstroke on more occasions especially on the shorter balls.

    no need to bunt the ball when you move forward. just get in position and drive a topspin into the corner and then charge the net. easier said than done but it will lead to an immediate improvement of your game.
     
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  8. spun_out

    spun_out Rookie

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    I would try to hit harder. I think you have it in you to do so. Your technical issues will reveal themselves once you start hitting harder and you can adjust then. If I were to play this person, they will basically all be 2 or 3 shot 'rallies,' as I will be hitting out the first floater I see (whether they go in or not, only heaven knows). Sure, it may not be fun for your opponent, but I think that your potential is above this level so you shouldn't be worrying about things like strategy and just try to get to the next level as soon as possible.
     
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  9. andrehanderson

    andrehanderson Semi-Pro

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    Thank you so much for the feedback, guys! What is your opinion of the level?

    Below 3.5, or above?

    I really appreciate the advice.

    Any tips for treating lower back pain?
     
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  10. andrehanderson

    andrehanderson Semi-Pro

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    A lot of great stuff in here. Thank you! Ill reply more appropriately tomorrow, but I wanted to thank you and the other posters who took the time to watch and contribute.
     
    #10
  11. 86golf

    86golf Semi-Pro

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    I think your strokes are generally okay for your level. Biggest issue is movement. When you change the direction of the ball you just stand there and watch. You need to switch to the other side of the center hash as soon as you strike the ball. It's a fundamental part of the court directionals.
    Cut out first ball errors. Get the point started at all cost even if you have to lob the return back.
     
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  12. andrehanderson

    andrehanderson Semi-Pro

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    Thank you for the feedback!

    What level do you put me at?

    Great tip about thr center hash...Thanks again!
     
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  13. andrehanderson

    andrehanderson Semi-Pro

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    Any other tips?

    Thanks in advance!
     
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  14. TomT

    TomT Hall of Fame

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    Hi Andreh. I can't give you any tips on your playing. Actually, I'd like to have your game. :) Even with the back problem it still looks very good (fairly fluid and solid) to me, and you did hit some really nice shots. Your opponent has a very formidable game, from my perspective, also.

    Certain kinds of injuries or conditions, and the pain that goes with them, can be very debilitating. I know from experience. Certain movements become very difficult or impossible to do, and it's so hard to just focus on the tennis and get into the good "zone". Have you tried chiropractic? Are you taking any sort of pain reliever(s)? I myself take Tramadol for the abdominal pain associated with my Crohn's disease (which has been active to greater or lesser degree for pretty much all of 2013). It does help, and it's also an anti-inflamatory, and a muscle relaxant, I think. Plus, it's non-narcotic so no worries about becoming physically dependent on it. I don't know if it would help with chronic back pain, but it's something you might ask your doctor about.

    As for your netplay, I have my own problems with playing inside the service line. :) However, just as a general thing to do, I've found that when I remember to do the proper split step around or just inside the service line, tighten my grip just a bit, and, most importantly, watch the ball, intensely all the way into contact with my racquet, then I usually make a good volley. Unfortunately, as with everything else in my game, I seldom do all the right things on any given shot. :) So I miss a ton. hahahaha

    Anyway, Happy Holidays.
     
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2013
    #14
  15. mightyrick

    mightyrick Hall of Fame

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    Man, if that isn't an apt description of recreational tennis in general... I don't know what is.

    When I go out there, I just want to do as many right things as I can at one time -- and hope the ball goes where I want it to. :)
     
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  16. andrehanderson

    andrehanderson Semi-Pro

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    Happy holidays, Tom! Thank you for the advice! I think you nailed it with the split step. I think that's a component I'm forgetting quite often.

    I'm going to look for some tramadol to try. Ill try anything at this point!
     
    #16
  17. Topspin Shot

    Topspin Shot Legend

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    Hey andreh. You can check out my guide to footwork that I've posted on a few different threads. It may help you.

     
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  18. andrehanderson

    andrehanderson Semi-Pro

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    Great advice! Thank you!
     
    #18
  19. andrehanderson

    andrehanderson Semi-Pro

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    Anyone have any videos to recommend on improving short court play?
     
    #19
  20. andrehanderson

    andrehanderson Semi-Pro

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    Shameless ttt
     
    #20
  21. psv255

    psv255 Professional

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  22. andrehanderson

    andrehanderson Semi-Pro

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    Hi psv, despite the volley in the video, my volleys are decent. Where I seem to make the most errors is by playing weak shots, usually floating slices that set up an easy passing shot, inside the service box.

    Ill check out the video you posted! Thank you!!
     
    #22
  23. maxpotapov

    maxpotapov Hall of Fame

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    Why would you ever want to hit to this guy's forehand? :confused:
     
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  24. andrehanderson

    andrehanderson Semi-Pro

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    LOL...you're exactly right. Honestly, Ill have to check the video again to see if it shows, but his backhand is just as good. He was playing in his sleep that day. Not even trying.
     
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  25. maxpotapov

    maxpotapov Hall of Fame

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    I really don't think so. He is fluent with his forehand, can beat you one handed half asleep. But his backhand looks awkward most of the time, and his bh slice is not any better, easy to volley.
     
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  26. psv255

    psv255 Professional

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    You mean you're in the svc box after hitting the floating slice? I'd just get away from slicing for a while and work on a deep, floating topspin approach. It sounds crazy, you don't want to float it too high, but something that can't be attacked easily because of its depth.

    If you want to knife a slice approach, you have to lean in a bit more than on a reg. slice and carve through the ball so much that you'd think it would go into the net, but the backspin lifts it over. I'm exaggerating, but that's what it has to feel like, in my exp.
     
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  27. andrehanderson

    andrehanderson Semi-Pro

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    I think in the third or forth point in the video, I'm hitting the type of slice approach shot I want to be hitting--knifelike and to the corner. The other times I tend to float the approach shot or dump it into the net. When I float it I am often stuck trying to volley against a tough passing shot.

    Ill try leaning in more in the slice!

    Thanks!
     
    #27
  28. mhff34

    mhff34 New User

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    Nice video, excellent serve. You have some nice ground strokes as well. It looks like you make the same mistakes I make, so maybe you will find this useful.

    First, I think your poor net play was just taking your eye off the ball a little too soon. Second mistake is when you hit a hard groundstroke and just watch it instead of preparing for a weak return, I do this sometimes thinking I hit a clean winner. I forget that not everyone is as slow as me. :(

    The third mistake (I hope someone else reading can chime in) is watching the ball instead of the opponents racquet. You seem to be caught off guard quite a bit when your opponent was chipping it back instead of hitting topspin, which led to you being out of position. I think if you were more in tune to his racquet you would have anticipated better the type of shot he was going to play and would have easily put away some of those slices and lobs.
     
    #28
  29. andrehanderson

    andrehanderson Semi-Pro

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    Thank you so much for taking the time to watch the video, and thank you for the kind words.

    I think you nailed it on all points, thank you. I think with regard to the last one, a part of the problem is that my eyesight is horrible. You should see my driving--I'm a terror on the roads. I was prescribed glasses a long time ago but only wear them to watch tv.

    Getting old sucks!

    I will try to watch his racquet though...I honestly hadn't thought of that.

    Thanks again!
     
    #29
  30. Sir Shankalot

    Sir Shankalot Rookie

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    It does indeed suck - but the good thing about tennis is that if you keep at it you can slow down the process of ageing and, unlike most other "proper" sports, you can keep going well into your 70s. I only started to think about fitness in my mid 40's (I'm 49 now) and the cool thing is that I am now biologically "younger" than I was 5 years ago in terms of VO2Max.

    Your eyes. This could explain a lot of the issues about watching the ball, watching the opponent etc. I am an eyeglass wearer, but when I took up tennis I did not wear them. However last year I had a pair of prescription sunglasses made and it has made a huge difference to me in terms of being aware what is going on on court, and especially depth perception. By your own account your eyesight sounds pretty bad so maybe give this a try?
     
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  31. andrehanderson

    andrehanderson Semi-Pro

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    Thanks for the post, Sir Shankalot!

    I am a bit worried that wearing glasses will allow me to better see the ball when it's on the opposite side of the court, but will make it a bit tougher when the ball is close. Have you found that to be the case?

    I might just go for corrective surgery, but I'm not sure if I'd have the same problem as I'd potentially have with glasses.

    Thanks again!
     
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