First ever film of my Forehand

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by GoudX, Apr 13, 2013.

  1. GoudX

    GoudX Professional

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    Hey guys,

    Videoed myself hitting forehands for the first time today, and while I am mostly happy, I realised that I am making a few mistakes. For instance: I appear to be setting up slightly late fairly often; my contact point/swing are sometimes too high and I am not bending my legs as much as I would like on most shots.

    I'm posting the video so that others can advise on any other improvements I can make. At 3:35 it switches from me hitting deep rally shots, to hitting short put away shots. Also, please ignore the errors, I am focusing on hitting out and controlling direction rather than on consistency in this clip (also ignore the terrible backhands I hit about a minute in - I got surprised by the ball machine setting!).

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w8mXnuqcot8

    Cheers.
     
    #1
  2. syke

    syke Professional

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    Lol... I was distracted by that dude on the left practicing his serves... Pretty nice serve motion.
     
    #2
  3. rommil

    rommil Legend

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    ^^I agree, no hitch, me likes his style:(
     
    #3
  4. JohnB

    JohnB Rookie

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    You appear to fire your upperbody before you fire your lowerbody. Maybe try to open your hips before you open your shoulders.
     
    #4
  5. GoudX

    GoudX Professional

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    Good spot, hadn't noticed that myself. oddly enough it looks more extreme on shots where I have time to set up! Because of that it is probably due to me focusing on timing the upper rotation and ignoring the legs. I wonder if it might be connected to the shallow knee bend, as that would reduce my hip flexibility.
     
    #5
  6. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    You seem stiff.
    Your shoulders are directly connected to your hips.
    If you look at vids of most good players, the shoulder turn leads the hip turn, as it's the first move once recognition of the side the ball goes responds in your brain.
     
    #6
  7. GoudX

    GoudX Professional

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    Are you saying I should be opening up the shoulders for the shot as soon as I know which way the ball is going? When I have tried that in the past I have found it has damaged my shot rhythm and limited movement speed, but I guess working through that is the way to get better preparation.

    It's sounding like the next step I need to take to develop my game is to separate the movement of the hips and shoulders. Any ideas how to achieve this easily?
     
    #7
  8. Fusker

    Fusker Rookie

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    In the putaway segment, you let a lot of those short balls start dropping before you hit. Tough to tell from the angle whether the ball machine was feeding them low or not, but for you to turn those into actual putaway balls, you've got to move quicker and more aggressively in and take those on the rise. You're forced to hit too many of them up to be effective. Take another look at that segment and I think you'll see what I mean.

    Grass courts? Where is this?
     
    #8
  9. GoudX

    GoudX Professional

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    Astroturf actually, like grass but without the massive maintenance problems. It's in the UK.

    Yeah I was late on quite a lot of those and I probably should have labelled them short balls rather than put away shots as they were only coming in a foot or so above the net. I was making sure that I was strictly retreating behind the baseline, and with the fast courts and inconsistent ball machine I often had to resort to topspin shots off of my ankles as there was no opponent to read. Some of the balls were bouncing before the service line and cutting right down, others were at shoulder height at the baseline.

    I'll see if I can get a bit closer in to the shorter balls in the future, but I think a lot of it was how hard I found it to judge the ball depth without an opponent to watch, until it was too late to move properly.
     
    #9
  10. Hollandtennis

    Hollandtennis New User

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    Use your non racket hand more. Facilitates turning of the hips/upperbody and coiling/uncoiling.
     
    #10
  11. fruitytennis1

    fruitytennis1 Professional

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    I wish i knew
    1. Head on the ball at all times
    2. Shorten up the backswing..even if you're "hitting big"
    3. A little bit late on every single shot..seems like you compensate with muscling that ball a bit.
    A few tweaks and i see a bright forehand in your future!
     
    #11
  12. dr. godmode

    dr. godmode Rookie

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    I would say bending your legs and exploding off them a bit more would help a lot. You seem to be relying on upper body strength to generate power, this can be tiring. Using your legs can help you last longer on court as they are stronger.
     
    #12
  13. Fusker

    Fusker Rookie

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    Cool - is that that people mean when they say they play on "carpet"? I haven't seen anything like that here.

    "Short balls" makes more sense. I couldn't see the height over the net but they seemed to be coming in low. I would venture a guess (having never played that surface) that they don't sit up very high either, so short ball practice is probably wise. I see way too many guys at my club that use the machine to groove a shot and never have to move. Those drills you're doing are much more effective in my opinion.
     
    #13
  14. Gut4Tennis

    Gut4Tennis Hall of Fame

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    so was I..........lol
     
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  15. Gut4Tennis

    Gut4Tennis Hall of Fame

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    relax your grip. hold the racquet just enough to keep it from falling out of your hand. that might relax the rest of the body

    early relaxed preparation baby

    great video
     
    #15
  16. martini1

    martini1 Hall of Fame

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    What court is this? Grass??
     
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  17. KMV

    KMV New User

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    Excellent forehand hitting, very smooth and good pace..

    Backhand - you seem to be getting to close to the ball at the point of contact.. I play 1hb, so don't know it too well, but on the whole, looked like you were not in position for most backhands..
     
    #17
  18. JohnB

    JohnB Rookie

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    What could be happening is that your upperbody is stronger than your lowerbody. When you have the time set-up and want to hit hard, you fire the stronger upperbody. But when you just bring the ball back in play, there's no intention of hitting hard and then maybe, the perhaps weaker legs and glutes can also attribute.
     
    #18
  19. GoudX

    GoudX Professional

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    Cheers about the forehand, I've always though of my backhand as a much more steady and technically sound shot. When I expect to hit it. The machine was set up for a forehand drill and I occasionally got surprised by how far left it would hit them :oops:.

    Astroturf. It plays a lot like a grass court in terms of speed, but it is much more consistent unless the sand piles up (it is used for grit in the wet). It gives much more of an advantage to players who slice and approach the net than the hard courts I am used to!

    My upper arm does tend to tense up in points, while I usually tend to be more successful in keeping my forearm loose. That said, my overgrip was in dire need of replacement that day, I remember the racquet slipping grip on a few of the earlier drills so I might have been holding tighter than normal.

    I believe astroturf is a carpet, but carpet doesn't always mean astroturf. It's a pity that it isn't generally very popular outside the UK, as it is better for varied attacking play, it can be played on in the wet, and it is softer on the joints than hard courts. The shorter points and softer floor have been very useful for helping me recover from a peroneal injury (part of the reason my lower body is a bit inflexible).

    I have to be careful not to over strain my leg muscles as I am on the comeback from a Peroneal ligament injury, so I've been focusing on trying to generate power from the glutes and core at the moment. That said it's probably about time that I started to incorporate more leg action into my shots again.

    1. Is there a particular point where I look up or something? I couldn't work out where I was going wrong from the video.

    2. In actual play my take back is less exaggerated, I tend to emphasize things like that when practising to make sure I get a good enough take back under pressure. In matches I tend to block the ball fairly often, and some of my better opponents take advantage of that.

    3. Yeah I noticed that too :-?

    Cheers everyone for the feedback :)
     
    #19
  20. baba123

    baba123 Rookie

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    The one thing I noticed is that you seem to perform your quick step then stop, surely you should push off from your quick step to the ball

    Btw everyone outside UK AstroTurf is sort of a sand based artificial grass which can be played in reasonable rain (albeit heavy balls) slices skid through very quickly and kick serve bounce up quite high
     
    #20
  21. GoudX

    GoudX Professional

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    Good advice, which I follow when rallying against a person, but I didn't know when the ball machine was going to feed the ball. Thus, I couldn't time the split step to finish when I knew where the ball was going - as I would only be able to split step once the ball was flying, which would defeat the point of the step.

    Also Astroturf is pretty much the perfect surface for serves as the turf drags slice serves low and kick serves bounce relatively high off of the hard surface.
     
    #21
  22. Velvet Ga el

    Velvet Ga el Rookie

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    You it right in your analysis. You have a high and circular takeback with your right arm, which can give you a lot of power from a long, leveraged swing. But the issue is that it takes time to pull off and can make you late, especially when you're not seeing the ball well.

    I had the same problem when I first started, and I lowered the takeback by imaging a sheet of glass resting atop my shoulders and parallel to the ground. My goal was to feel like my hand (note, not the racquet head, which almost always has to go above shoulder level) never "broke" the glass. The result was a more compact, fluid backswing that didn't take so much time to execute. And my preparation, and thereby ball striking, was much better (and quicker) as a result.

    I'd also like to see you load into the right leg more, but I won't belabor that point because you seem to grasp it from your post. And I think that, as you level your swing, you'll start to be more aggressive with your bottom half because you won't feel late so often.
     
    #22
  23. mightyrick

    mightyrick Hall of Fame

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    Really nice forehand. Very smooth. Very good, easy tempo. Clearly you are in a comfortable groove with it.

    The incremental suggestion I'd make is to just to get that wrist low and loose at the end of takeback. Do everything else the same. So do what you do now, but just add the lowering of the wrist/hand to hip level.

    So when prepping... at takeback, say in your mind "takeback and down"... "takeback and down"... "takeback and down".

    The rest is really awesome.
     
    #23

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