Forehand Question

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by Jeewalk, Nov 24, 2009.

  1. Jeewalk

    Jeewalk Rookie

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    how would i be able to to hit topspin with an eastern forehand grip?? im thinking of switching grips and my semi western isnt penetrating enough and my coach says i have to hit flat with it but to be honest its awkward
     
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  2. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    Simple. You would brush up the back of the ball with a low to high swing. The racket face is nearly vertical at contact for most shots. Were you looking for something more profound or detailed than this?
     
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  3. paulfreda

    paulfreda Hall of Fame

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    Well there is a problem hitting topspin with an EFH grip.
    So the technique is more complicated than just "brushing up" , even though this advice of course is true.

    The problem is that this grip along with the continental grip natually opens the face as you swing. So then adding to that swinging low to high to "brush up" can make it maddeningly difficult for a beginner to keep the ball in court. In fact most beginners when they decide that they want to start hitting the ball with more pace run in to this conflict.

    There are several techniques that deal with this problem for the EFH grip ........
    One of the fundamentals is to hit the ball later back near your body before the face has had time to open up.
    Another is to learn to "come over the ball" by closing the face as you swing through.
    Another is to learn the Windshield wiper swing which comes across the ball rather than driving toward target.
    Also a less low to high swing much like what Fed does wrapping around the body is more likely to be successful.

    Note that SW and FW grips allow you to swing low to high to your hearts content without fear of hitting long.
    This is because of the naturally closed face. In fact you need to swing L to H [in general] to get it back over the net.

    On another tach ....
    The OP said he has trouble getting pace with his SW.
    One suggestion I have is that before switching grips to EFH, try just taking the ball later.
    This will tend to force you to swing faster to get the face squared up and make it easier to get the pace you are looking for.
    Watch Djoko and Soderling how they take it late when they boom their FHs.
    Even Fed is hitting back by his right hip when he rips his off FH crosscourt.
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2009
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  4. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    One thing not mentioned here....
    EFH was an older generation grip! So CLOSE YOUR FEET and fully turn your shoulders. NOW swing fast and you get topspin AND ball speed.
    Mirror you 1hbh topspin drive.
     
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  5. user92626

    user92626 Legend

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    Actually the FH is profoundly difficult if you want to couple it with power and consistency. I play in a pool of 60, 70 players and only see less than 7 that know how to hit with any authority. The rest hits easier than the wall I play with!
     
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  6. fuzz nation

    fuzz nation Legend

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    Pay attention to your contact point - more or less far out in front of you - but also note if the ball is already dropping, just topping out, or rising off the court when you make your contact. The more extreme of a grip that you use should make it easier to go farther out in front of you after the ball, but not if you like to make contact at a relatively low point. That's when an eastern grip can make it easier to work the ball well.

    If you like to take the ball sort of early, your sw grip might be the better option, but if the ball usually has topped out and is dropping when you like to hit it, you'll probably find better penetration of the court with an eastern fh. See if your coach can tell you where you should be looking to make contact (more out front, farther back) and if you need to take the ball any earlier or later off the bounce.

    An eastern forehand may require you to set up more below the ball and then lift through contact to get enough topspin. It can feel different from the sw stroke that can seem somewhat more flat, yet still churn out some good spin. At least that's my impression of the difference in the feel between them.
     
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  7. sir_shanks_alot

    sir_shanks_alot Rookie

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    Jeezwalk, where do you finish? High, near the shoulder, or low, by the hip?
     
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  8. Geezer Guy

    Geezer Guy Hall of Fame

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    I hit my forehand with an Eastern grip and don't have any problem getting significant topspin on the ball. It's not (or doesn't seem to me to be) nearly as difficult as previous posters imply. You can really drive the ball yet it has enough topspin to dip down into the court. I hit with either an open or closed stance, depending on the situation. Normally, I prefer closed.
     
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  9. papa

    papa Hall of Fame

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    Well, the reason your not probably having problems is because your stroke mechanics are sound and your staying down on the ball. One of the problems many people have is the tendency to rise up through the shot - I think they conclude that this and an upward stroke are the same which of course they aren't.
     
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  10. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    WHO derre Nelli !!
    Lots of coaches ADVOCATE rising up during the forward stroke of the modern SW gripped forehands. It's in all the current threads here, by knowledgeable coaches like BBill and SAn.
    Sure, EFH is not SW, but some players cheat between so it's not a clear delineation.
    It's not how you achieve it, it's the final result of low to high swing and barely closed racketface. BARELY CLOSED, not perfectly vertical.
     
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  11. Blake0

    Blake0 Hall of Fame

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    It sort of depends on how you're wanting to get power, from linear momentum or angular momentum. If you're trying to get linear, you'd want to stay down with a closed stance. if you're trying to get power from angular, you'd want more of an open stance, and load up on your outside foot and unload releasing up and forward.

    To OP, i'd recommend using 1 or all of the 4 paul mentioned in the 3rd post on this thread. Federer uses all of them to hit with heavy spin on his eastern forehand.
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2009
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  12. Ripper014

    Ripper014 Hall of Fame

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    You cannot explain it any easier than this... to get topspin you want to generate forward rotation of the ball... if you want more topspin it is a combination or two things... start lower and finish higher with your swing... and/or generate more head speed. Both should generate more rpms thus more topspin, if you want a more penetrating ball flatten out your stroke... or like we used to say... pretend you are hitting more than just one ball... assume there are 5 in a row and you need to hit all of them.

    And I would challenge the thought of open and closed racket faces... I am a big supporter of maintaining a square racket face on all shots other than lobs... why make things difficult. You will automatically adapt as you settle in, staying square has always served me well... closing the racket face you start to cover the ball and that is something I have never recommended, but then that is just IMHO.
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2009
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  13. user92626

    user92626 Legend

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    That's a difficult concept to go by if you plan to use angular momentum for power (the topspinboard hitting style). And angular momentum is ideal for topspin FH.
     
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  14. papa

    papa Hall of Fame

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    Well, let me restate what I said then if this is indeed the case which I find difficult to believe.

    I want players to stay down on the ball and keep their heads quiet - I do not want them rising up through the shot as a means of generating topspin for several reasons. Can it be done, yes but as a general rule, I don't care for it.
     
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  15. moroni

    moroni Rookie

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    Well this is coming from a guy who switched from an eastern to a semi western fore hand.... the only thing I liked about my eastern was that I didnt have to change grips when hitting backhandz or when volleying it was all one grip... but since most of the ballz you hit are forehands you will find a really big improvement in your game if you switch....anyway you will really have to give it time to adjust to the new contact point and change of grips ... It took me 4 months to fully adjust to the change ...So ust give it time
     
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  16. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    ONLY continental grips you don't change grips from serve to volley to forehand tops and backhand tops.
    I use SW, and never use the same side of the racket for forehand and backhands, or for volleys.
    Grip change is not the hardest skill to learn, so it's learned after 2 years.
     
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  17. papa

    papa Hall of Fame

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    Well this might be true about ground strokes but on the volley its different because you can cover a lot more on the backhand - range of coverage. You might want to experiment at home and you'll see what I mean. Forehand volley has a very limited coverage area as compared to the backhand.
     
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  18. papa

    papa Hall of Fame

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    Well, assuming you have the time to switch. If I see a player who changes his grip on a volley, you can bet I'm going to take advantage of it or try too anyway. On fast exchanges there is little time to make any kind of a switch.
     
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  19. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Sorry, I thought this thread was about FOREHAND groundies, not overall grips used for different shots.
    From the baseline, we have time to change grips, maybe not on fast first serves, but GROUNDIES.
     
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  20. ScoopsHaaganDazs

    ScoopsHaaganDazs Rookie

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    Yeah I have the same problem as you. All people ever tell me is to brush up to get topspin. You need a fairly different stroke to get a good forehand imo. If your EFH is really flat, you probably hit straight across and contact the ball when your racquet face is vertical. I just gave up on topspin because I can hit balls in with flat shots and topspin didn't really suit my game. Not everyone has to use topspin. At my level, topspin is not necessary(imo).
     
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  21. shwetty[tennis]balls

    shwetty[tennis]balls Rookie

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    Please, DO NOT SWITCH GRIPS!!!! There is a particular advantage to hitting with an eastern grip. All you need to do is pronate your hand through contact. You'll need to experiment where exactly to take the ball at contact.
    Also, bending those knees a bit more while finishing your swing over your head will give you added topspin.
     
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