How to pull the tweener

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by Vennemonster, Apr 8, 2012.

  1. Vennemonster

    Vennemonster New User

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    I'm at the high school level and have been playing as much as I can ever since I've picked up the game. I'm not saying I'm good enough to need to master an unnecessary shot, but if I could pull a tweener off in a match or even practice match... that would make me a legend since no one else on the team has ever done it either.

    So any advice guys on how to hit one? What set up I need? Any pointers are greatly appreciated!
     
    #1
  2. pvaudio

    pvaudio Legend

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    1. Don't overrun the lob

    2. Line yourself up perfectly with the ball

    3. Trust yourself to let the ball drop until just before it bounces. You'll think it's going to hit the ground, but it won't. Just look at Fed's tweener against Djoker and see how high off the ground the ball was, a foot maybe.

    4. Continental grip. This is purely a wrist snap.

    5. Snap the racquet through your legs as though you're going to hit your balls with your hand. This is the only way to make sure that you do NOT hit them. Reason is because you'll still be moving forward, so once you've hit it, your arm will be between your legs and underneath, and the racquet pointing straight out behind your butt.

    That's about it.
     
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  3. Vennemonster

    Vennemonster New User

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    Thanks! I feel like this is the ultimate show off trick unless you know any others.

    I've only seen it once in my lifetime in person and I think my jaw dropped
     
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  4. Rozroz

    Rozroz Legend

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    tried it a few times.
    frightening as hell to stick the racquet there while running.
    good tips though.
     
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  5. jacktyler627

    jacktyler627 New User

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    When you first start make sure the lob is not very high. That is a good key for first starting. Also remember if you want to adjust the height of the tweener, ball placement is important. The farther in front of the ball (or past) you are, the higher the shot will be.

    Out of the 10 guys on our tennis team, we have 5 that can hit tweeners, and other teams are in disbelief when we hit them
     
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  6. Devilito

    Devilito Hall of Fame

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    Hit it plenty of times in a match not because it’s a trick shot but because it’s often the easiest shot to hit running back for a ball. The “trick” is that you need to practice it like any other shot. Most people think it’s some magical shot you’re born with but even the pros that hit it well practice it.
     
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  7. Vennemonster

    Vennemonster New User

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  8. Vennemonster

    Vennemonster New User

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    well that's embarrassing, how do you quote someone?
     
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  9. EaGamer

    EaGamer Rookie

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    Just click quote
     
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  10. Sean-Topspin

    Sean-Topspin New User

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    Want a tip to make the 'tweener' easy? I pulled this trick off as a beginner tennis player years ago, but it wasn't anything in tennis that helped me build confidence in putting something between my legs, it was dribbling a basketball. Pretty much the same feeling really and truth is if you're a beginner b-ball player trying this, chances are you've hit yourself where the sun dont shine a few times inadvertently, lol. Get a basketball and practice and throw jumping motion in at the same time as dribbling it between your legs. Once you get comfortable, this will be an easy maneuver to pull off when you're running backwards to catch a lob or w/e.
     
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  11. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    You probably did it correctly but then inadvertently deleted 2 characters. See where you have QUOTE] at the end of your quote? There needs to a [/ preceding it so that it reads [/QUOTE] .
     
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  12. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    Just to be clear -- it is not the easiest shot to figure out. But for those who have mastered it, it is easier to execute since you don't usually have to run as fast or as far to hit the shot as you would for an alternative. For the tweener, you only need to catch up to the ball to hit it -- you are directly over the ball when you hit it. In order to hit the same ball with a FH stroke, you would need to run a bit faster in order to run past the ball so that you can twist and swing at the ball.

    I doubt that Federer actually practices the shot (very much). He probably hits it occasionally in his practice sessions but does not really actively practice the shot. He probably "learned" it just from seeing other players execute it (Agassi, Sabitini or someone else). After seeing it a few times, he just figured how to execute it. His subconscious mind might have figured it out after seeing a a number of times.

    This is the way that I've "learned" a number of my trick shots. It's not something that I had practiced. In the heat of battle, I saw/felt the shot in my mind's eye and just executed it. It was something of an a-ha moment, a creative insight, that I visualized and executed on the spot. I've even done this with a couple of shots that I've never seen anyone execute before.

    I figured out the tweener nearly 25 years ago when I was only playing at a 3.0/3.5 level. It was somewhat easier for me because I had already mastered the tweener shot in badminton. It's a bit easier in badminton because you don't have to deal with a bounce. On a clear (lob) shot, you turn your back to the net, move into position and let the shuttle drop directly in front of you. You then hit the shuttle shortly before it would hit the ground. For tennis, you need to hit the ball shortly before it would bounce for a 2nd time.
    .
     
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2012
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  13. alidisperanza

    alidisperanza Hall of Fame

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    Definitely let the ball drop. You're going for a fairly low percentage shot so you're not really losing anything if the ball hits the ground for a double bounce. If you aim high... well, you'll definitely wish you had lost something
     
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  14. vil

    vil Semi-Pro

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    Guys, I've been playing tennis for nearly 30 year and I feel like an idiot here.
    What the hell is a tweener??? I probably know the shot. Are you talking about lob? Please, somebody put me in the straight line.:)
     
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  15. Rozroz

    Rozroz Legend

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    [​IMG]
     
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  16. vil

    vil Semi-Pro

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    Ok, my bad I didn't read properly the entire thread. It's a between legs shot after a lob. It doesn't always come out the same but I believe if you practice enough you can get good at it and even direct the ball. I learned it a long time ago and I found the best way, after the ball bounces, just make sure you keep running, so you keep up with it and then as it falls low enough you make sure you snap the wrist. Once, I actually managed to play another lob out of it, which ended up as winner.:)
     
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  17. alidisperanza

    alidisperanza Hall of Fame

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    Indeed. The easiest place to put it is down the line though.
     
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  18. pvaudio

    pvaudio Legend

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    See above images for what I was saying.
     
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  19. SStrikerR

    SStrikerR Hall of Fame

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    Just practice it a few times. You'll feel stupid for a while because you won't be able to, but once you get it right a few times, it'll become fairly easy to pull off. I do all kinds of tweeners at practice just to mess around, and because it usually results in somebody else trying it when they don't know how to. Hilarious results.

    A word of caution though: Until you think you can make the shot a good 90% of the time, do NOT try it in a match. There are safer alternatives, and if you miss a tweener you will look (and feel) like the biggest ***hole.

    Trust me. I missed it one time, and that one time was enough to make me just play a safer squash-like shot.
     
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  20. pvaudio

    pvaudio Legend

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    That is HUGE. Do not pull this in a competition match unless you can hit every time regardless of how the lob is. You'll look like an idiot and a showoff if you do. You'll still look like a showoff even if you make it.
     
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  21. Nellie

    Nellie Hall of Fame

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    Start practicing by hitting the shot without running - face the back fence and drop feed the ball. It will be come obvious with a few practices (as said above, lower is better - you are usually getting to the ball and waiting for the ball to drop). Then you mix in the foot work - sprint pass the ball, take a couple of small steps, and then hit that same shot
     
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  22. Limpinhitter

    Limpinhitter Legend

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    You can definitely see Roger pulling his tweener in the second picture!
     
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  23. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    This is a very good idea. Toss the ball right in front of you, let it bounce and then get your body directly above the ball and hit it shortly before it has a chance to bounce again.

    The next step would be to toss the upward and a little bit (more) away from you. Move toward the bounce point but meter your movement to stay a little bit behind the bounce. Once the ball bounces, quickly move to catch up to the ball as it starts dropping again so that you are directly above it. You do not need to run past the ball. Or, perhaps I should say that you should not run past the ball -- just catch up to hit it.

    Note that the tweener can be executed without the extreme follow-thru that we see in the Federer photos/videos. I've hit scores of effective tweeners with a more abbreviated follow-thru. I've clipped my lower leg (shin/calf) a couple of times but have never come close to hitting my upper leg or the family jewels.

    I do not use a vigorous wrist snap either.
     
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  24. Sean-Topspin

    Sean-Topspin New User

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    Lol, I believe the OP wants to learn the trick to do exactly that. On the one hand, you don't wanna act to cocky, but one the flip side of things, tennis is about creativity and individuality. If doing things like this are a part of your personality it's going to come out on the court.

    Not so much in tennis, but in other sports I've been called a showoff for doing crazy things, but I was just being myself and truth is I try these things when nobody is around to see either. That's the fun part of sports, for artistic personalities anyways, lol. -Dare I say more fun than winning :p

    One thing I should mention Mr. OP. Believing you can do something is half or more of the battle. When you get out on the court and try a tweener, just do it :p ie: Just because others felt silly attempting it, doesn't mean you have to. Roger Federer gives this as the number one tip for young tennis players : Believe in your abilities :p
     
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  25. pvaudio

    pvaudio Legend

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    I mean that's true. I like hitting spinning volleys and tweeners for that matter. During friendly matchplay, I'll try these out every now and again. If it's a serious match, absolutely not. Why? The tweener is an unecessary shot. If you can get to the ball well enough to execute it, then you had enough time to hit a proper defensive stroke. The chances of missing that are much lower than the tweener.
     
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  26. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ZnC6jcRQRg&t=35s
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ZnC6jcRQRg&t=1m38s


    For the most part, true. But not completely true.

    In order to hit that "proper" shot, the player must outrun the ball to be able to turn/twist to take a swing at the ball. However for the tweener, the player must merely catch up to the ball to hit it. In this respect the tweener is often easier to hit. Notice, in the links above, that Federer slows down a bit after the high bounce in order to time the tweener properly.

    Federer's success rate with the tweener is quite high, I believe. He is able to place is quite well, with pace, often for a winner. From my late 30s to my mid 50s, my success rate with the tweener was also very high. I was usually able to place it well (but not with the same pace the Roger sometimes achieves). I ended up winning more than 2/3 of my rallies that included a tweener. It would often be an outright winner or it would elicit a weak response that allowed me to put the ball away. Not sure that my success rate with a "proper defense shot" would have been that high.

    There have been a few times when I had to execute the tweener on a full run. It was the only viable option that was available in the situation. Most of the time, however, I did have other options (requiring me to run a bit faster) -- but I suspect that they would have been more of a defensive shot rather than an outright winner.

    Another thing about the tweener is that it is a fun shot to execute, especially in a competitive match. A well placed tweener can provide a ego boost or a bit of a high. It can get your adrenaline going to the point where you win a high percentage of the subsequent points. A tweener that results in winning a point can also be somewhat deflating to an opponent.
     
    #26
  27. alidisperanza

    alidisperanza Hall of Fame

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    While my success with the tweener is about 45% (I rarely hit one), another way you can get a bit more comfortable and confident with it is learning to hit the between-the-legs volley. This is usually something you pick up teaching but it will help you get used to positioning the racquet in such a erm... precarious... position.
     
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  28. Rock Strongo

    Rock Strongo Legend

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    Well if you're good at it it's an easy way to wow the crowd.

    I just have to add, saw a kid whom I think is 12, successfully pulled it off THREE times during one point but missed the fourth.
     
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  29. jhick

    jhick Semi-Pro

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    It's one of those shots that takes a while to initially learn, but not super hard once you've executed it successfully.

    I used to hit it more often and more successfully than I do now. I've found that when I'm not successful, I'm usually rushing it. Generally, you have more time than you think you do to hit it.
     
    #29
  30. Nellie

    Nellie Hall of Fame

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    Because I serve and volley or doubles doubles, I end up having to hit this type of shot about once a week in response to a good lob.

    By the way, SA is absolutely right above about not running past the ball. I get turned around describing the shot because you are moving away from the net- the right footwork is to run right to the ball and weight for it to drop and then move over the ball when it is really low. This is the hard part to time because the lower the ball, the easier the shot, but you obviously don't want the ball to bounce.
     
    #30
  31. KTENNIS

    KTENNIS New User

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    Only Federer can pull off this shot and not look like an idiot. Even when he misses he does it with such grace it looks like he is giving the opponent a free point :).
    Only tip is that you have to hit it as when the ball is at the level of your shoes.
     
    #31
  32. anantak2k

    anantak2k Semi-Pro

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    Reading this thread is inspiring me to learn to hit the tweener!
     
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  33. pvaudio

    pvaudio Legend

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    Obviously given my advice, yes, I can hit this shot fairly well. But you cannot possibly sit there and think that a between the legs shot is the only answer to a short lob. I'm sorry, but that's just false.
     
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  34. vil

    vil Semi-Pro

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    You obviously haven't watched a lot of tennis. There are thousands and thousands of players that can do this shot to almost perfection. The thing is, they don't use it because it's a low percentage full stop. There are safer options. You probably won't see Federer playing it at important points. The truth is, you are facing the fence not the player. You have no idea where your opponent is. He has much higher percentage of knocking that ball for a winner.
    Yes, we've all seen some incredible winners out of this shot but they are rare.
    Believe or not, even I can pull this shot. Certainly not as good as Federer but I managed to pull some winners out of it. It's not really that hard to master.
    I can tell you right now, no coach will recommend you to play this shot in a match play.
     
    #34
  35. pvaudio

    pvaudio Legend

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    That wasn't his point, he was saying pretty much what you did. Of course the top players can hit it. The point is that it's obvious if you have enough time to slow down enough to get on top of the ball and let it drop to below your knees before you hit it, that you could have hit a defensive lob return. If you choose to hit the tweener, then you're either having fun or showing off. Sure it gives you a boost if you do it successfully. What about when you miss it? You look like an idiot. And I agree completely with your last point.
     
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  36. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    If the lob is short, I'd hit the overhead of course! If the lob is a little bit deeper, you should still have some offensive options w/o resorting to a defensive lob. You can sometimes run past the ball and hit an aggressive shot. If the ball bounces high enough, I can sometimes turn my back to the net and hit an over-the-shoulder Bucharist Backfire. Can hit a lob or a more aggresive backfire shot in this situation. TBC...
     
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  37. vil

    vil Semi-Pro

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    I was more or less reacting to his first sentence. My point is, Federer is not the only one who can hit this shot. And I partially disagree that you have to look like an idiot if you don't make it. If you play it technically correct as long as you hit the ball, to me it's still OK if you know what I mean. It's still a show off shot and you play it when you are having fun but missing the court by a certain margin is like missing a forehand or backhand. But if, in a process of hitting it you stumble, miss the ball, hit your knee with your racket, trip over or run into the fence, then you look like an idiot.:)
     
    #37
  38. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    If the opponent's lob ball bounces fairly deep in NML, I'd be more attempted to hit the tweener (not on a short lob). Given a choice between an offensive shot (an aggressive response or a placement shot) and a defensive lob, I'd go with the offensive shot if I felt that I could execute it well.

    Back when I could still run down half-way decent lobs, I would win better than 2/3 of those rallies when I executed a tweener. If I hit a defensive lob in the same situation, I would win 50% or less or those rallies. Of course, should probably use the tweener judiciously. If you employ it too much, it becomes less effective -- you get sloppy on your execution or your opponent starts to read it better.
     
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  39. SystemicAnomaly

    SystemicAnomaly G.O.A.T.

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    Dipped his bucket in that well one too many times. Have never hit more than 1 in a tennis rally but I did hit 4 successfully in a badminton rally. It was only a semi-serious game tho'.


    This is not completely true. Roger knows where his opponent is when he hits the tweener. His winners are not pure luck. When I have hit the shot, I knew where the other guy was. You can see you opponent's location and movement after they have hit the ball. By the time you turn around to chase down the lob, you should have a fix on where they are and where they are moving. You need to visualize the court and their position when you execute the tweener.

    I recall only one time where I did not have good fix on all the players when hitting a tweener in a doubles match. My partner and I were both at the net when the other team hit a lob over my partner's head. I called the shot as I started to run it down. The other team was one up and one back and I had a pretty good idea where they were when I executed the tweener. I placed my shot accordingly only to turn back to the net to find that my shot had hit my partner squarely in the back. Altho' I know where the opponent's were, I did not no where my partner was. I had fully expected him to change sides since I was running down a lob over his head. Instead, he stayed put and I hit him. After we saw that he was alright, we all had a good laugh -- and then I admonished him for not switching.
    .
     
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2012
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