Feedback/tips for serve

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by Dimcorner, Jan 22, 2013.

  1. Dimcorner

    Dimcorner Professional

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    So as my last post stated, I'm currently running up on 7ish months of playing about 3 times a week. I have a very strong badminton background so overheads and net are very comfortable for me to execute with the exception of reading spin and putting my left leg forward on the forehand volley (badminton is racquet leg forward for all shots in front and behind you).

    I am still working on the toss and trying to figure out how much leg bend I'm comfortable with. I can do a flat serve ok but the spin ones feel a little weird still (how much side vs forward swing to put on the ball). Sometimes I slice too much and dumps into net, sometimes it's mostly a flat serve with minimal spin.

    In the video I'm mostly trying to put some spin on the ball. I don't recall trying to hit a solid flat serve during that video.

    Any feedback appreciated as always!

    http://youtu.be/FCcJhsyE7IU
     
    #1
  2. Dimcorner

    Dimcorner Professional

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    BTW I'm playing at a 3.0 league if that helps.
    And because I can't edit posts yet so +1 for the count!
     
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  3. Dimcorner

    Dimcorner Professional

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    Also about the knee bend. How much of it is knee bend vs back bend? I tried to do a deeper knee bend but I see most videos kinda lean back A LOT as well with the bend. Maybe I'm doing it wrong but when I tried it my back was telling me that it doesn't feel too good...

    OH, one more thing. I'm not tall (5'7") so are there any tricks or tips to have a more effective serve? (jump for serve? little spin?, wicked spin?)
     
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  4. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Nice nice, even for 4.0.
    Lower your hitting hand and elbow at trophy will help you swing upwards more.
    Swinging faster, of course.
    Try to think of your wrist as a HINGE that allows the rackethead to catch up with the hand just before impact.
    Nice nice serve.
     
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  5. joesucks

    joesucks New User

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    Who rated you at 3.0? looks like you are sandbagging for now. your serve is definitely better than most 3.5's or closer to 4.0
     
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  6. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    If you want more pop, change your racket to something around Mid or mid+ sizing. It will allow you to swing much faster.
    You're kinda going thru the motions in your vid. Stop, set, load, and then go into your motion.
    Swing faster. Your swing speed seems really slow.
    You seem tall enough to hit flat first serves. Learn them. And learn a true second serve, which takes about 25mph off the speed of your first serves, but the spin makes the ball go IN every single time.
    Learn specific serves. Like slices towards your left corner, flats up the middle to handcuff the returner, and twists out far right corner.
    Then learn to hit each serve to at least 2 of the 3 quadrants of your opponent's court, both first serves and second serves.
     
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  7. Dimcorner

    Dimcorner Professional

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    Thanks!

    I'm 5'7" and yeah I noticed the swing speed. I'm going to slowly up the speed on swing. Last time I tried a full out swing I almost took my shin out so I'm hesitant to go all out. It just feels like the racquet is so unwieldy compared to what I'm used to :)

    I'm using a BLX Pro Open vs Yonex Nanospeed 9900 (86g) ;)

    I'll keep practicing and upping speed and will post a updated vid in a month or so to see if any progress is made.
     
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  8. Dimcorner

    Dimcorner Professional

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    I'm self rated at 3.0 because I have only played tennis for about 8 months now and joined my first league back in Sept 2012. The reason I think the serve looks good (as well as my overheads and volleys) look good is because I play very competitive badminton (state and out of state level). The overhead and serve is almost the same motion as a smash and as for volleys well badminton shuttles come at you quite a bit faster (because of the shorter court) so I'm used to reacting and hitting in front of me.

    Backhand is ok as well because most of your other shots in badminton are backhands.

    Now my forehand... that is my weakest shot by FAR! That and I'm still used to reading and dishing out spin. Whenever I try to put spin the ball just gets in behind the net. Whenever I try to hit harder it flies out the back with no spin.
     
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  9. luvforty

    luvforty Banned

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    nice serve!

    OP you can get to 4.0 fast with your background.

    my suggestion - forget about fh/bh.... hit everything like a volley and you get to the net asap !

    you may need to work a little on the volleys as I don't think the motion is the same as anything in badminton...

    but once you get that part, you are on fast track to 4.0 !
     
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  10. Dimcorner

    Dimcorner Professional

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    BTW,

    Here is a vid of me playing badminton in my last tournament. You can get a feel for it with just watching the first minute and a half or so. I'm in blue closest to the camera. My partner has 2 bad knees so I have to run and cover pretty much 3/4 of the court.
     
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  11. Dimcorner

    Dimcorner Professional

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    #11
  12. luvforty

    luvforty Banned

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    link?..........
     
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  13. Dimcorner

    Dimcorner Professional

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    Yeah volleys are different (reading spin also) but the good thing is that I feel I have so much time to react that I can get the racquet ready and in front of me +90% of the time. I'm not used to the angles so I don't do a serve and volley yet (as well as getting better at placing serves) but I would definitely consider it.
     
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  14. luvforty

    luvforty Banned

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    nice.... with that skill, you go fast track to 4.5 !!!

    forget about topspin.... just learn the volleys... and you hit everything like a volley and you go in !

    and with that kind of overhead skill, you can afford to get to 3ft to the net and opponents will still hesitate to lob you.

    and forget about 3.0 for now.... you use the above strategy and do 3.5 right away, you will dominate and move to 4.0 in 1 year, dominate again and move to 4.5 in another year.
     
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  15. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Since you're 5'7", just watch vids of DavidFerrer serving and playing matches.
    Very few short guys like you can succeed playing the net the majority of time, because of your lack of reach.
     
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  16. jakeytennis

    jakeytennis Rookie

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    nice serve. but if u want a more consistent 2nd serve. get more loop and spin.
    do this by focusing more on hitting up on the ball, while the brushing motion spins it down. that's my advice
    also toss the ball more above or behind your head to allow more brush
     
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  17. luvforty

    luvforty Banned

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    on this one i strongly disagree with Lee.... i play baddie, i know what OP is up to... and he already said the ball looks SLOW lol.

    think about Rod Laver, how tall was he?

    speed makes up more than the lack of elevation.
     
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  18. Dimcorner

    Dimcorner Professional

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    I actually tried it and I sent a ball past the fence and almost to the next one! :)
    That kick serve is one i'm trying to get my head around.

    If you swing straight up, the ball goes into net. If you swing forward then it's flat. I guess I'm not understanding the angle of the face of the racquet at contact and the direction of that motion.
     
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  19. Dimcorner

    Dimcorner Professional

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    Well, the ball looks slow to me, but that doesn't mean I can reach it in one step :\ I can see the ball and react VERY FAST to them, but some will still be out of reach or I'm just not in the optimal position (again, still getting used to hitting angles and court size). I do play head games (like in badminton) of baiting the opponent to hit open court and just before the swing closing the angle.
     
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  20. Dimcorner

    Dimcorner Professional

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    He is still taller than me too! :\
    I mean I'm not aiming to be in the grand slam so I guess it's ok :)
     
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  21. luvforty

    luvforty Banned

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    yeah, see that type of skill is useless at the baseline.... so your low hanging fruit is at the net.... it's too obvious :)
     
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  22. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    If I was 5'7", I would not copy the game of Dr.Ivo, Isner, Milos, DelPo, Soderling, or Berdyk.
    I would look closely at the games of the guys close to my own size.
    Just like DelPo doesn't try to copy Rochus's game, nor does he copy Ferrer's, even though he loses to Ferrer.
     
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  23. luvforty

    luvforty Banned

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    #23
  24. luvforty

    luvforty Banned

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  25. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Some people would question the relevance of a 40 year old style of play when it's to be applied to the play of today.
    1. We hit harder now.
    2. Cement rec courts are fast, yes, but most tourney's are played on slower surfaces.
    3. The big changes in racket seem to favor a gain in groundies as opposed to any gains in volleys.
    4. A topspin lob is often seen even in 4.0 level tennis.
    5. It takes much longer to learn an all court game than just a baseline game.
    6. Try if if you dare, don't expect to win too many.
     
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  26. luvforty

    luvforty Banned

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    at 4.5s ? come on

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uBtqj9yfONw

    all the progress in the pro game is irrelevant at the 4.5s, not to mention the 4.0s.

    do you have any idea how GOOD this guy's overhead, volley and drop shot will be?

    if he parks at the baseline, he wastes all that asset.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f8SZynE4N1w

    let OP decide, if he prefer to park at the baseline, or pick off all those floaters at the net.

    we are talking about OP, being a 5.0-5.5 equivalent in badminton! he should play badminton brand of tennis... and you want him to park at the baseline and play pingpong like all the other guys in the videos above?
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2013
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  27. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    He should try it, it might work.
    I do know a relative beginner at tennis who was a national level badminton player in Vietnam, and he was short and adopted a pure net game. He quickly, within 3 years, made lower level 4.5. But, he never got better! Without a baseline game, his lack of height is a shortcoming.
    I"ve played him maybe 30 sets, me being a strong 4.0 in at the time, and we came out overall very even in game and set scores.
    In other words, it CAN work, but not the recommended path.
     
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  28. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Oh, of his 3 sons, NONE adopted his grip or his net game. All 3 made 5.0's, played in college, and all use western grips and baseline style of play.
     
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  29. luvforty

    luvforty Banned

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    we are talking about low hanging fruit here.... get to 4.5 asap, then worry about topspin so he can hang baseline if he choose to.

    i don't think your friend would make 4.5 in 3 years by parking at baseline.

    the 3 sons... with no badminton background, that's entire different scenario.
     
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  30. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Actually, the oldest son is a better badminton player than his dad.
    He's still using Western grips, 2hbh, and chooses to stay back.
    But, he's Americanized.
     
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  31. luvforty

    luvforty Banned

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    5.0, college ball, sure, kinda difficult for conti only.... again, different scenario.
     
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  32. Dimcorner

    Dimcorner Professional

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    Hey thanks for all the feedback and opinions.
    I am actually a doubles specialist in badminton so hanging at the net is very comfortable for me, however I do know the shortcomings of it and I think at the 3.0 to 3.5, maybe 4.0 I can get away with it.

    I played a pusher and was up 4-0 but then I tried to hit harder to close out and lost the set 4-6 (I know!). Anyhow I switched to serve and volley and I then beat him 6-1 and 7-2 in the tie breaker.

    I don't think I want to specialize in ONLY serve and volley, but I do want to be comfortable with it to be able to use it. I do want to get better at the baseline as well because you kinda have to in case you have to hit 2nd serves right?

    Anyhow today I went out and tried to drop my arm more and it worked pretty good. I was getting WAY more spin on the ball. I have to work now on getting that as automatic and then the next step is placement. I can hit right now "leftish" and "rightish" angles but I can't exactly aim for lines yet. I also tried more speed and it worked ok. I have to get it more under control since I ended up banging my shin again :).

    Today I tried to hit with the crazy nadal grip on forehand and a more standard grip as well and they both feel ok to me. I seem to expend much more energy with the crazy grip but they do have quite a bit more spin! I can't decide on that one.

    Anyhow thanks for both of your views (leed and luvforty). You guys are great and have given me enough tips and ideas to consider to keep me entertained and have a plan for improvement/practice. I'll keep you guys updated!
     
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  33. luvforty

    luvforty Banned

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    i meant you go in on everything, that includes 2nd serve, return of serve, everything.... like this guy

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-O_UWfVeFVE&list=FLr98Y2RjF58s2NqbYXcr3Lw&index=6

    how do you bang the shin, you don't with the badminton smash.

    yeah, the topspin stuff, can come over time.... but you have the luxury to go up the ranks quickly... a rare luxury other people don't have.

    tennis is lot more fun when you go up the ranks :)
     
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  34. Dimcorner

    Dimcorner Professional

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    I bang the shin because I'm now swinging something about 4x the weight :)

    The momentum is a bit more than I'm used to so my leg gets in the way :D
     
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  35. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    You can strap on a soccer plastic shin guard for now.
    Once you change your serve to hit upwards at the ball, and also finish with a high hand, high elbow, the chances of hitting your shin get much smaller.
    And when you work on direction of your serves, it get's smaller again, until you only hit your shin maybe once a year or so, and that's when you're not paying attention to your serves.
     
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  36. luvforty

    luvforty Banned

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    is there a swing path issue here?

    is a badminton smash supposed to be 'up' swing?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9wJNX1IA4hQ

    here Oscar has a good explanation where you basically throw the racket tip towards a 'up' direction... so basically the energy should have released after impact, and the arm just falls down..... shouldn't smack the shin if you swing this way.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9QL1sglyouU&list=FLr98Y2RjF58s2NqbYXcr3Lw&index=23

    the first one, Gerald, you can see the racket head has released all the energy after impact and the whole thing just falls down.
     
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  37. Dimcorner

    Dimcorner Professional

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    Well badminton is a forward swing with a good amount of wrist rotation at the peak. Racquet ends up about waist level but you have to remember that the racquet is about 86g (or a hair about 3oz) so... yeah if I try to swing a tennis racquet at the speed I swing badminton I will de-socket my shoulder :)

    So I will practice swinging upward and finish with elbow high. If I'm swinging up how do you impart forward velocity?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eH6qFJoySf8

    This is Fu Haifeng. #1 ranked world doubles doing a smash. If you turn up the volume a little you can hear how WICKED that sounds. He is teaching how he hits it (in chinese thou). There is a slow motion capture in this clip.
     
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  38. luvforty

    luvforty Banned

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    oh you will get velocity forward :)

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

    swinging this way actually does not change the path that much geometrically... but allows you dump out all the energy..... and you swing more freely without worrying about smacking the shin.

    you get more spin too.. and a spinny / kicky ball is just as if not more difficult for the returner to handle.... you get more safety margin and more time to rush to the net.

    Edberg / Rafter - great serve/volleyers who play this way.

    that Fu smash.... WOW !!
     
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  39. Dimcorner

    Dimcorner Professional

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    That's a nice vid and explanation going "up the mountain". Will try it next session for sure!
     
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  40. Endless Met

    Endless Met New User

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    Do you push off the back leg?
     
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  41. Dimcorner

    Dimcorner Professional

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    Quick update...

    So I started just swinging up and according to my team-mate my second serves are coming in with much more spin and pace. This whole swinging up has made a DRAMATIC improvement to the 2nd serve as well as the 1st serve. Also my swing speed seems to have gone up thanks to the "reach back further" advice coupled with the swing upward (I'm not even close to hitting my shin now). Once I get comfortable and consistent with it I will post a video up.
     
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  42. Dimcorner

    Dimcorner Professional

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    I feel like I push off the back a little more than the front. I'll see if I can take a 3/4 serve view.
     
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  43. luvforty

    luvforty Banned

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    nice :)

    if possible, can you post one for volleys and groundies.
     
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  44. junbumkim

    junbumkim Professional

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    Very nice motion - good rhythm, toss, technique, etc.
    As far as technique and form are concerned, you should not try to bring any drastic change. Keep the foundation the same, and try small adjustments if necessary.

    Knee bend looks to be enough. What you want to incorporate is having more "hip stretch", essentially you want to try to stick your left hip out into the court as you get into the load up position. Serving is very much similar to throwing a vault upward, and in order to throw anything upward, you have to stretch your front hip.

    Do you feel more comfortable serving on the deuce side? You look more explosive serving on deuce side vs ad side - not sure if it's due to different view point...

    As you practice serve, practice with targets so that you can work on your placement as well as your speed.

    About height and serving, keep working on improving your serve by using your hip and shoulder turns, and staying very loose. Learn to mix up your serves.
     
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  45. Dimcorner

    Dimcorner Professional

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    Yes I actually feel weird serving from the ad side. Feels like I'm just going to launch that thing out the back fence! It's been better since trying out the swing up method. I have to figure out why thou because sometimes I feel like i'm just throwing the racquet up there and it somehow lands in the box!

    I'll get a video up towards the end of the week showing my flat and slice serves with some targets.

    As for volleys and groundies I'm going to see if I can take them this weekend when I go hit with my team. Be warned, my forehand just sucks!
     
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  46. luvforty

    luvforty Banned

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    already knew that lol..... just being curious about how a badminton player transitions
     
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