Finding my strokes after 20 years. Stroke video inside

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by Greg G, Jul 1, 2012.

  1. chico9166

    chico9166 Guest

    Would you agree that the face of the racquet at impact is what dictates the line of shot? If so, then from a neutral wrist position a player would primarily have to swing in the direction of the intended target. And as you most aptly put it, the swing is arching around contact.....in order to swing in an arc, the wrist would have to be laid back, or neutral, or anywhere in between to send the ball to different quadrants.

    The newest information (brian Gordon, tennisplayer) suggests that the wrist is not really a part of the whole stretch shortening cycle but is positional in nature... That is, the laid back wrist at the beginning of the swing provides a player with a substantial joint range of motion to postion the racquet at impact congruent to the target line. In fact, he maintains that the muscles controlling the wrist are resisting (to a lesser or greater extent) teh centripetal force created by the rotation of the arm around the shoulder...

    So what Im saying is , that if you want to swing in an arc, and create angular speed, BUT want to send the ball out on different quadrants, the position of the wrist (in a kenesthetic sense) is key...

    You ought to read his article in tennisplayer..its really good.
     
  2. Cheetah

    Cheetah Hall of Fame

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    GregG, here's the lockandroll video again. Have another look if you haven't seen it in a while. You can see all the elements I described above.

    Note how the ball is farther away to his right and how he brings the hand down close and then swings out to the right and 'goes out to get the ball'. Notice how long the butt points at the ball.
    Also look at his racquet flip back and down and behind the body, the ssc action and his contact made w/ a neutral wrist.
    Listen closely to what he says which is basically everything mentioned in this thread.
    Also note how he says "the racquet naturally sprints forward', and 'without any effort' and 'powerfully and effortlessly'.

    So if you do this right that racquet moves by itself. You'll see.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=endscreen&NR=1&v=EMNtq393tvo
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2012
  3. Cheetah

    Cheetah Hall of Fame

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    I've been a member of tennisplayer.net up until a few months ago. I agree it's an awesome site.

    I didn't read it but I'm aware of his comments/article on the wrist flexation not being part of ssc. That's fine. He's probably right.

    But I don't think he says that contact is made with a laid back wrist because of this does he? Because video evidence suggest otherwise. Unless as I said, going i/o. On cc or up the middle the big guys are contacting with a neutral wrist.

    Look at any slow mo fed vid. He makes contact for a cc with a neutral wrist. The difference is he meets the ball a little earlier than he does going up the middle. on up the middle he is also neutral. same with rafa. No laid back wrist.

    And heath does say something like 'and you can/might have a little bit of laid back wrist going up the middle but usually it's neutral'. something to that effect he said.
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2012
  4. chico9166

    chico9166 Guest

    No Cheetah, you are correct. The wrist tends to be more neutral on outside/crosscourt shots. (makes sense as a player is trying to get the tip in front of the hand) The inside out forehand would be the polar opposite though, and one would tend to see the racquet head lag a little behind teh hand. And of course, everything in the middle.....It's sublte but there..
     
  5. Cheetah

    Cheetah Hall of Fame

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    yes it's subtle there. i agree. :)

    bedtime now. 3am here. talk to you later.
     
  6. chico9166

    chico9166 Guest

    Sleep well.
     
  7. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Cheetah knows why I asked that question. Greg, in your previous post, did you imply that when you tried to go CC, the ball went out too wide? What was your experience?
     
  8. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    What about the 9th photo?
     
  9. Cheetah

    Cheetah Hall of Fame

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    Idk but after watching his videos for months now and have only seen maybe 4-5 inside out fh's total in all that time I'd say he was going up the middle.
    You can tell from image 7. You can't hit i/o that way. So if it went a little wide it was by mistake or late hit. He wasn't going for it.
     
  10. Greg G

    Greg G Professional

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    Well give me a little credit ;) I was aiming for, and hitting the ad corner for 3 whole baskets. The wide camera angle makes it look more down the center. But those were soft feeds to me.

    Anyway to answer your question suresh, I don't have trouble hitting crosscourt. No I don't hook it wide on a regular basis, just occassionally, when going for too much angle during a match. Cheetah is correct that the problem is the inside out forehand. Or to be precise, the current form of the stroke doesn't allow me to hit a proper inside out forehand.
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2012
  11. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    and that's exactly why you should play some ad court side doubles....
     
  12. Greg G

    Greg G Professional

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    LeeD, when I do play doubles, I always choose the ad side. I actually play much better in doubles, probably because it doesn't expose the footwork so much :)
     
  13. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    And you hit inside out forehands?
    Interesting. I"m lame (physical for sure), and need as much footwork in doubles as singles, because the target's are much smaller, and I need to be much more accurate.
     
  14. Cheetah

    Cheetah Hall of Fame

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    Those were inside out? or do you mean wide?
     
  15. Greg G

    Greg G Professional

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    I guess it's like parking the car. I like smaller targets. Give me a wide open parking lot and I get confused on where to go. Drives my wife crazy :twisted:

    Anyway, this is much better answered in video form. Sorry it's blurrier than usual. The attempts at IO forehands are in the 2nd half.

    http://youtu.be/uD3wk4PI234
     
  16. Greg G

    Greg G Professional

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    Wide middle :)
     
  17. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    What I see....
    You don't turn your shoulders enough for going inside out. You keep them pretty much aligned to the center of the court, but not more. And sometimes, your feet are closed, yet you're going inside out on the forehand.
    I think, on your takeback, you should turn the shoulder more to take the racket back for those inside out forehands.
     
  18. 5263

    5263 G.O.A.T.

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    I hope that's not you at net backing up more into no-mans land with each shot exchange:???:

    Looks to me like you don't get around in good position for a I/O.
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2012
  19. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Sometimes, when I play WITH a weak hitting, but consistent partner, I'll back up to behind center of service box to DARE the opponent's to hit to me.
    My partner's puff balls that land at the service line are no incentive for me to poach, since I'd have to leave pretty early, exposing my alley. Most players at 4.0 have no problems keeping such sitters well wide of the center tape, and I get bored just standing useless in place.
    Also, when the opposinig team is T ing off on my partner's shots, I'll either make a late poach or take 2 steps back and take a nap.
     
  20. Cheetah

    Cheetah Hall of Fame

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    yea i saw that too. wasn't gona say anything tho :)
     
  21. Greg G

    Greg G Professional

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    That wasn't the point of the video lol? But there was no way to get back in front of the service line, plus I think I was gassing out at that point? There's a similar one at the end where I do go back in :)
     
  22. 5263

    5263 G.O.A.T.

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    As Lee said, I guess there are reasons to do it at times.
    I just always wonder why guys start in there if they are just going to backup
    as the play progresses. I don't think you can volley as well moving back.
    Why not just start further back?

    sorry...lol, not the point of the vid :)
    I'll stop
     
  23. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    No no, let's continue.
    If your partner is pooping back sitters over and over, there comes a point when it's worthless to stand in, so you might as well concede the point.
    Standing at center of service line makes you a huge easy target.
    At least when you stand ON the service line, you have a chance to get a lucky reflex blocking shot to, hopefully, neutralize the point.
    Question of opponent hitting offensive shots, your partner barely defending with weak crap, so what are you going to do?
     
  24. PrestigeDave45

    PrestigeDave45 Rookie

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    Good luck with the tennis. Great to see someone coming back into the game from such a long lay off. I'm currently one year back after 20 years away.
    You seem to be doing really well, have watched ur youtube hitting vids and ur proficient for sure.
    Well done
     
  25. 5263

    5263 G.O.A.T.

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    If you want to continue, it should not be hijacking Greg's thread, but since I'm
    already responding, I'll remind you that I said there are some reasons to do that.
    I'll be glad to explain why I disagree with the above if you start a new thread on
    it.
     
  26. Greg G

    Greg G Professional

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  27. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    So, after 17 pages and 300+ posts, you are the only person who deserves to answer here?
    Did I hijack, or did I expound and explain something YOU wrote, about backing up from service box position? You yak about not backing up, and only a cursory attempt, feeble as it is, to say there might be a reason. I explained the reason.
     
  28. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Lots of players separate court sense from player strokes, but the two go hand in hand, even if the senses and the hitter are two different players on the same team.
    Your partner is hitting the balls. He's supposed to be on your team, so essentially, he's an extension of YOU. Your strategy is supposed to be geared towards winning. His strategy should be also. Both of you are supposed to think along the same lines, not exactly the same, but the same general concepts.
    Your partner seems to hit lots of weak, high floating balls waiting to be crushed, down your throat or for a clean winner.
    What do you do? You can tell your partner to hit harder. You can run around your side of the court senselessly, hoping to distract your opponent's. You can backup to a safer defensive position, which is being done.
    Which to choose?
     
  29. Greg G

    Greg G Professional

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    Last edited: Oct 18, 2012
  30. Greg G

    Greg G Professional

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  31. Cheetah

    Cheetah Hall of Fame

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    holy crap! nice improvement! I think I actually saw some sidespin in there! very nice. RHS took a nice a jump up too. and i/o fhs!
    Damn. I'm good.

    Ok, I know you feel good now and think you don't have to improve anymore but... gotta keep going. you still have more potential

    Good energy with the footwork but I say take 15-20% of that increased energy and put it into a better leg load. You are loading better but it's still a little loose. Often you load but then you unload it before the swing and hit off of your left foot. This makes you arm it more. You don't need to have a huge explosion off of your right leg where you're flying off the ground like a Fed highlight vid. Just a correct load and a decent push will do if it's loaded right and timing is right. It's all timing.

    So get MORE weight on your right and get a nice CONTROLLED, nicely timed push off of it. Take a big step.

    Watch this short vid. Note the part where he talks about how rafa loads. Just a big step and then a push. No need to rush it. rushing makes things tense.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sFrg3zSfnec&feature=g-user-u

    Swing path is starting to look good now. Try to work on making the arm even looser. It's better but I can see you're still using the arm muscles a little too much for the rhs and there could definitely be more racquet flip at the ptd stage although i can see it's starting to take shape now.
    A good leg push and a looser arm will still give you more rhs and more spin and power. If you can get your arm looser you will also get more radial / ulnar deviation for more spin naturally w/o effort.

    I see that you are swinging out to the right now. That looks way better don't you think? Looks much more mechanically correct.

    A good tip you should try is to hold the racquet quite a bit looser than you are now. A looser grip will make your arm looser. You don't have to make it tight on contact. Don't worry about that. It takes care of itself. I hold my racquet really really loose.

    It also looks like you actually have topspin now. Pretty cool.

    Remember to hit the inside of the ball on your i/o fh's. you did it sometimes but sometimes not. you want the i/o's to curve away. Your first few were pretty good. had sidespin.

    You hit a lot of good shots in those vids. That's the first time I've seen you hit where you were driving the energy into the ball like I kept saying. None of that fading to the left stuff. nice.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2012
  32. Greg G

    Greg G Professional

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    See now I know it's improved if I got a positive response from you! Big thanks! ;)

    I slid the grip ever so slightly further towards SW. From modified eastern, I may be a weak SW. Feels good though!

    Oh I know it needs more improvement! It's good on balls fed right to me, still kind of breaks down on rallies though. But that will come over time :)
     
  33. Greg G

    Greg G Professional

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    Need a bit of clarification regarding the sidespin component. Am I correct in saying that for a crosscourt forehand, I would be hitting more of the outside of the ball in a 5-11 direction, and inside out would be the inner part of the ball at a 7-1 direction?
     
  34. Cheetah

    Cheetah Hall of Fame

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    Hitting on outside on fh is 'hooking' the ball. yes it's sidespin but you can also make square contact on the back of the ball coming across it for sidespin in the other direction like on the i/o. And you can also hit the top half of the ball on the outside. i do that sometimes on short balls and it really curves away a lot. and you can also hit the inside on a cc which i do just to mix up the spin in a longer rally. but the last 2 are advanced shots.

    If I were you i'd concentrate on developing the up the back and across sidespin. That's the one used the most with this type of fh and it gives a little extra security and a nice kick on the bounce. It will also help you develop the angular momentum swing because to do it well you really have to be swinging on an arc.
     
  35. Greg G

    Greg G Professional

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    OK I'll work on square contact, up and across. Just clarifying the concepts in my head. Thanks!
     
  36. 5263

    5263 G.O.A.T.

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    I/O spin is more the 5-11 when observed from directly behind the balls target
    path or line of shot, for a righty and the ball will tend to tail down & right.
     
  37. Greg G

    Greg G Professional

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    Back from a 3 week non-tennis vacation in Florida! 5 pounds heavier. Ugh.

    Anyway, just getting my groove back. 22 hours on a plane takes a while to shrug off (well it used to be easier!) Didn't feel like drilling the first time out, so I did a long mini tennis warmup, then played half a set. Played surprisingly well, 3-3 (ran out of time). I didn't let my opponent control the center and run me ragged this time out :)


    Forehand: Form may not be as good as the last time out, but the placement seems better. The switch to a full SW grip from extreme eastern (not big a change actually) and spreading the index finger further away (more pistol grip) seems to have made the PTD position and the windshield wiper feel much more natural.

    I notice I need a bit more extension with the left arm, it's dropping early now. Plus I probably need to point the butt of the racquet to the ball more. Will fix that next time out.

    Serve: Meh. :/

    http://youtu.be/HzTAgCvnMbI
     
  38. Greg G

    Greg G Professional

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    Finally got back on court. A bit busy IRL, so I had to make do with shadow swinging for a week, just working the ulnar deviation/radial deviation part. People probably thought I was epileptic, doing that move while walking in public...

    I got out on court, did some drop hitting inside out forehands, just concentrating on the stretch-shortening cycle, relaxing the arm and dragging the butt of the handle to the ball. I think this is a great way to start, even before half court play. Really lets you focus on technique.

    Played a set with the usual guy I play with (and always lose to). I beat him 6-4! First time ever. The forehands had some pop in them, and I was playing without thinking about technique! Honestly, I have never ripped the forehand like this...maybe ever! Usually it's my backhand that causes the damage, but today I was cracking forehands to the smart targets crosscourt and inside out!

    Was making sure to catch the ball at the top of the bounce as much as possible, staying loose and relaxed, and striking with intent. On return of serves I could visualize what I wanted to do...and actually did them! All the hard work is starting to pay off! :D

    Anyway, here's some footage. I do see some issues when I get forced out wide to the forehand. Footwork needs improvement on these wide balls. I do get to hit it, but the recovery needs work. Suggestions would be most welcome!

    http://youtu.be/ySvw0VR4Ii8

    I also need to work on the reverse crossover for running around the IO forehand. Need a more positive first step, so I don't get caught late with the weight going left (Cheetah's pet peeve). :)

    http://youtu.be/kCFpf8_UgiY
     
  39. Greg G

    Greg G Professional

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    Played competitive doubles today, and at one point found I was missing forehands consistently long. Took a few games to figure out I was drifting back to my old modified Eastern grip from the SW grip. I guess it's easier to maintain a new grip playing singles. The faster pace of doubles points makes it harder to maintain the new grip. Ah well. Time to break out the basket of balls :)
     
  40. Greg G

    Greg G Professional

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    Been working on court sense more than tecnique the past few weeks- been doing well vs the regular guy, just controlling the play from the center of the court. Won again 7-6 (after screwing up a 5-2 lead).

    Anyway, all the forehand talk here got me excited to go have a hit!

    Hit for a while with a former Davis Cup player (10 years retired). Cooperative warmup for doubles, so we were just hitting crosscourt. Groundstrokes were holding up pretty well, though I'm sure he was holding back. After rallying with him for 30 minutes or so, I was really winded from the weight of his shots.

    Warmup
    http://youtu.be/qd_KjrpUcSQ

    Point play
    http://youtu.be/Pk8Dw2JOP6o

    I still need to keep the palm down for more PTD. I did some hand fed drills after the session, which kinda helped that. Unfortunately camera ran out of juice...

    Anyway, would be nice to get some comments/pointers/reminders from you guys. To keep me on the right track.
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2012
  41. Cheetah

    Cheetah Hall of Fame

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    I think contact point on fh might be too late. Hard to tell from that angle.
    Needs to be more out in front like on your bh.
     
  42. Greg G

    Greg G Professional

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    This was all the footage I salvaged from the self-feed session, just before the battery died. Focusing only on the SSC and dragging the buttcap to the ball here. Look OK? This was at the very start. I think later on I flattened out the swing angle some more.

    http://youtu.be/_nN8fzL1OQA

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2012
  43. Cheetah

    Cheetah Hall of Fame

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    Yea that looks good
     
  44. Greg G

    Greg G Professional

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    Thanks! My serve is now sticking out like a sore thumb, will start paying more attention to it.

    Hey Cheetah drop me an email (click my name). I did promise a beer didn't I? ;)
     
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2012
  45. Greg G

    Greg G Professional

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    Again, the heat of battle, particularly return of serve in doubles, can cause the forehand to revert. Being able to analyze the video is awesome, I was wondering why that particular forehand was so way off....now I know.

    http://youtu.be/iIAlP59DcQQ

    [​IMG]

    While still not ideal, I had more PTD here and controlled the ball (slow second serve).

    http://youtu.be/qAj8_23sB3A

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2012
  46. Greg G

    Greg G Professional

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    Aside from my serve, I decided to spend some time with my backhand, since, it was starting to show signs of neglect, particularly my slice. It was pretty refreshing to spend time grooving it and not having to think too much.

    Topspin crosscourt. Arguably my best/favorite shot. This is the standard I hold the new forehand against...I want to be able to generate similar power from it, especially on weak balls.
    http://youtu.be/muDwXnd1Akw

    Topspin DTL. Hmm. Needs more shoulder turn...
    http://youtu.be/6R3ioWNwhYo

    The slice showed the most signs of neglect. I was chopping across previously, which LeeD noted. Hope I corrected it here. Still flies on me sometimes (haven't figured out the cause). Suggestions? Needs more shoulder turn?
    http://youtu.be/ptgtd6G_A-Y
     
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2012
  47. sunof tennis

    sunof tennis Professional

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    Yes, more shoulder turn. Should be able to see your back from the other side of the net. If you want some top spin you need to get the racquethead under the ball and brush up more.
     
  48. Greg G

    Greg G Professional

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    Merry Christmas all!

    Had to get out on court to burn off the holiday poundage... :(

    Did some work on the volley- 3 reflex, than putaway. Works well for improving reaction time and shortening the swing.

    http://youtu.be/JlTVBwX7DY0

    Also worked on touch with the backhand slice. Too a while to get the soft angles/ drops dialed in.

    http://youtu.be/5jOTIbr4XBg

    Of course I always work on the forehand. Still need to work on this wrist thing during takeback, though it is better than before. Not much sidespin though.

    http://youtu.be/97mJo0I8ZG8
     
    Last edited: Dec 26, 2012
  49. sunof tennis

    sunof tennis Professional

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    Can feel you on the extra holiday poundage. Holidays are rough on fitness.
    Not a teaching pro, so take everything I say with a grain of salt. On volleys:
    With the backhand it looked like you were taking too much of a backswing.
    On the forehand, you couuld use a little more underspin for control and to have it slice though the courts.
    On the forehand, you have a nice stroke. However, it almost looks like you are off-balance a little. I think part of it is that you are so concerned about hitting from an open stance that your feet may stop moving too early. Conversely, you movement on the backhand slice seemed more natural. Only thing I would work on is to make sure you drive through the ball on the slice.
     
  50. Cheetah

    Cheetah Hall of Fame

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    You seem to be off balance. You're not establishing a good stable base to hit from. You need to be set up and firmly planted and balanced before swinging. You're not doing this so when you swing the momentum is carrying your body all over the place. Your left foot is doing this little skip thing as you swing.

    Look at this nice djoko sequence here. notice how he gets set pretty firmly before he swings and after contact he's still balanced like nothing has happened at all. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iaJrIzLb1Ko&t=43s
     

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